Friday, April 27, 2007

New Troubles In Basra

By Queen Amidala
Basra, Iraq
Apr. 20, 2007

Things are getting worse than before -- apart from what's going on with governor.

First, one of the militias attacked Al Fayhaa Club, our club Fay [Fay note: A very well known Iraqi Christian social club]. They ordered the contractor not to open the club for weddings or any other celebrations.

On the second day of Easter, we had lunch there. I was thrilled to see our club again after almost two years. During lunch, I told my family it's a nice, spacious club with nice air-conditioning. I told them it would be nice to come here during hot summer days to feel the cool air and enjoy a nice lunch once in a while.
As simple as this is, the bloody militias didn't like to see it open.

Second, Unknown militias bombed four hairdresser shops in Basra. We used to go to one of them once a week. Thank God nobody got hurt as the militias bombed them early in the morning. A few days ago, the bombing reached the playstation shops too.

In Baghdad, it's literally hell. The news that they are forcing the Christians to pay jyzia are correct. They're also forcing the Christian women to dress like conservative Muslim women and wear the scarf on their heads. If they don't follow these instruction, they are forced out of their homes and leave their belongings behind [Fay Note: I believe this is specially happening in Al-Dora]. In general, Sunnis are leaving the Shia areas and vise versa.

Our relatives in Baghdad are very frightened of the whole situation. They are trying to leave Iraq but the new passport delimma make it difficult to get passports.

My younger uncle called us two days ago to ask my dad's opinion as to what to do. My uncle is VERY scared of the escalated situation. His daughter goes to college which, makes the situation worse for him in relation to security and finances.

All in all, it's hell. No one imagined this was going to happen to us. We went through a lot during Saddam's ruling and wars. But nothing can be compared to this one.

I'm scared and I can't even think what's going to happen next. I don't want to think about it anyway.

We're all in God's hands.. He is our savior.

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Blogger Mister Ghost said...

Hi Fay,
They're employing the same tactics
against the Christians as they did against the Jews in Iraq. Drive them out of the neighborhoods, confiscate their properties - eerily similar.

Even labelling the Christians as collaborators, is what they also called the Jews sixty years ago.

At one time Fay, Jews comprised a third of Baghdad's population - now there are about 8 of them left in the entire country.

How many Christians will be left
in Iraq by 2050? Or in the Middle East?

Did you know there's a video of the
Yezidis honor killing? A Kurdish website posted it - Personally,
I think it was irresponsible and inflammatory to show it - all it's done is increase hostilities - the
Yezidis were greatly wrong in their actions - but the Kurds are hypocrites. They engage in honor killing themselves.

I hope Queen Amidala and her family
members can find a way out of Iraq.
The madness isn't ending anytime soon. Tell the Queen, MG send his warmest hopes.

4/29/2007 11:10:00 AM  
Blogger Fayrouz said...

Hi MG,

You must be reading my mind. Lately, I've been comparing what's happening to the Iraqi Christians to what happened to the Iraqis Jews before them. The same old tactics; only this time it's a different minority. We'll be lucky if 8 Iraqi Christian families would still exist in Iraq by year 2050.

I saw still phots of the stoning. It boiled my blood. You know how I am when it comes to womem rights. It was originally posted on YouTube then removed by YouTube's admin.

Please, keep Queen Amidala and her family in your prayers. I'm really concerned for her safety. I'll pass your regards to her.

4/29/2007 12:58:00 PM  
Blogger Mister Ghost said...

Hi Fay,
I just read your latest post by
Queen Amidala, and was wondering if there was any way for her to get out of Basra? She would be safer in Iran actually these days. Before the Shah was removed from Iran, they used to smuggle Jews out of Iraq and in to Iran, before they made their way to England, Israel, or sometimes India.

What about the Queen moving to one of the Christian villages in the Ninevah area? I hope she can somehow move to a safer location. I'm praying for her safety.

Any ways, I've spent the last 8 months researching Iraq, Iran, and the Middle East, and what happened to Basra, to make things so awful for everyone, is when the war started, Saddam's forces and the police left and the armories were looted, so the Militias of the various parties and the Iranians flooded in, filling in the vacuum of the departed forces. Then the British took over, but they didn't have enough troops to maintain order and contend with the militias or the Iranians.

In Maysan, Fay, the British had exactly 72 border guards to cover the 200 mile Iranian border.

And Fay, here's another crazy thing
that went on - the Iraqis in the southern Iraq villages would use tractors and pull down the transmission poles - one tractor could take out 12 pylons at a time - then they would melt down the copper wire and sell it to Iran.

They would receive 10,000 dollars for 80 pylons of wire from the Iranians - then, LOL, the Coalition would have to rebuild all the pylons and it cost them 100 million dollars. Terrible.

4/30/2007 03:01:00 PM  
Blogger Fayrouz said...

Hi MG,

Leaving Basra isn't an option for the Queen right now. She has to take care of her old parents and continue to work to sponsor herself. We urged her to leave Basra long before things got really bad there. Her answer was always the same, "I can't leave my parents behind." She's a very strong woman.

10,000 vs. 100,000,000. I don't know if I should laugh or cry.

I'm expecting things to get worse with Prince Harry being sent to Basra soon. Basrawis have suffered for many years. I'm not sure how much more they can take.

4/30/2007 07:25:00 PM  
Blogger Mister Ghost said...

Hi Fay,
When I think of Queen Amidala's situation, I'm reminded of Nour,
Stephen Vincent's translator. Basra is like the Wild West, and the militias are the rampaging Indians seeking scalps. I can't see how the Queen can protect herself or her family.

Well, in the good news department, about a month back, I heard a radio interview with Nour and Lisa Ramaci - I laughed when I first heard Nour's voice, she sounded like a Middle Eastern version of Minnie Mouse from Walt Disney, but what Nour had to say was very powerful
and you could tell that she was a strong person. Nour mentioned that she had an interview upcoming with the State Department, and that she could be in the U.S. within six months time.

4/30/2007 11:43:00 PM  
Blogger Fayrouz said...


You may recall that the death of Steven Vincent made the Queen decide to write us from Basra. She's one of few people who understand that Steven died because he loved Basra and wanted to tell the world about its suffering.

Queen Amidala won't be able to protect her parents if a crazy militia decides to kill them. But, it makes her feel better to be with them. Also, leaving to any other place requires a lot of money and a unknown future in a strange place. No country has stepped up its refugee program. So, she's reluctant to leave the country.

I missed the first interview with Nour. But, Hootsbuddy has the details of her next interview on the 4th of May. Read the details here.

5/01/2007 07:28:00 AM  
Blogger Mister Ghost said...

Hi Fay,
I will have to remember to listen to that interview. Fay, you should pick up the book, The Wake Of War by Anne Nivat. She went to both Afghanistan and Iraq after the wars, and interviewed both Afghanis and Iraqi people, everyone from Kurdish authors to your favorite father, Brother Yusuf Thomas. She has an entire chapter devoted to him. When I originally read the book, I said to myself, that name sounds familiar, LOL.

She talks about -- among many things -- how he wears
a leather jacket and jeans after conducting mass, and then goes to the Al-Rif cybercafe.

He oversees a library of 7000 volumes in Assyrian, English, Arabic, and French.

He had to file bankruptcy after the Iran-Iraq War.

And he gives his thoughts on Eastern and Western concepts of time, Arabic language, early Islam,
those in the East are communitarian in nature, while those in the West are individualists, but suffer from loneliness and egoism.

Fay, your Father Yusuf is a very deep thinker.

5/01/2007 11:13:00 AM  
Blogger Fayrouz said...

Hey MG,

Thank you for the tip. He never told me about it. I wonder if he knows himself.

Yes, he's a deep thinker. I have many of his lectures on cassettes. I listen to them when I'm feeling down. He can make you laugh while teaching the deep concepts of Christianity.

I wish to meet him when he visits the States this year. I hope my finances will be in good shape then.

5/14/2007 08:24:00 AM  

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