Monday, January 31, 2005

Life in Iraq: Some Blogs from the Frontline

Continuation from the previous post...

Most people I have interacted with, seem to take one of these two stances about the current happenings in Iraq:

  • either they have next to no interest in Iraq, apart from as a news item (which is not "real" in the real sense)... Almost as if Iraq is something which is happening on a different planet, and to people of a different species, while the life on planet earth goes on as if nothing is "happening",
  • or they have an opinion about Iraq - was it worth it or not? Is it right or not? Wasn't-it-better-to-get-rid-of-Saddam-Hussain vs. Isn't-Bush/USA-trying-to-act-like-imperialist?

To be honest, I also have an opinion about Iraq (in fact, I recently mentioned to a friend that listening to Bush's inaugural address reminded me of "The Feuhrer", and he told me to consult a psychiatrist for harbouring such delusions :0)....

Later, I checked on Google and found that apparently, like me, there must be some millions of people in the world who need urgent psychiatric care![1]... I felt particularly vindicated by this letter from one of the holocaust victims[2]... Iraq of today can as well be the Poland of 1930s...

That, in a way, is also the source/reason of my interest in Iraq. The tsunami waves of history also travel invisible till they are about to strike the distant shores, even though they may take a few years to strike...

Someone sent me a mail about the last post about Riverbend's Blog "Baghdad Burning" saying: "My first reaction was .. Anne Frank , but with more grisly details..." - I agreed, and was also struck by the subliminal imagery behind this observation. Diary of Anne Frank!!! What was the historical context in which she wrote that diary!!!

For those who may be interested, here are a few of my other sources/links for keeping track of the day-to-day life in Iraq. These is not a complete list, but some of those Iraqi/Arab blogs which I visit more often:

Life in Iraq:
  • The Baghdad Blogger's Blog
    Salam Pax's original blog - Where is Raed - which got translated into a film (which screened in the International Film Festival in Vancour a few months back). Though it's latest entry was in April '04, this perhaps is amongst the oldest Iraqi blog which started a few months before the Iraq invasion/liberation. The best way to get a feel of history in making would be to go back in archives to the first entry in December 2002, and read it forward... Salam Pax was able to attend the Vancour Film Festival, and now has another new blog

  • A Glimpse of Iraq
    This blog, maintained by Abu Khaleel, has some of the most unique anecdotes, which are simultaneously touching and surrealistic. A very dispassionate view of a slice of the absurd reality.

  • Diary from Baghdad
    Rose, a 27 year old woman, a civil engineer, writes about "the current events in Iraq in my point of view and as I hear from people living here around me and the way they see things here. Not as you hear from the news, but the way we feel and live with and how it affect us."... A cross-section of individual private life with history-in-making

  • Life in Baghdad
    One year old blog, maintained by Ahmed Khuraffa - he didn't like Saddam, and he doesn’t like occupation either... A very personal and authentic view things as they are... By a person who is directly impacted by them.

    The following four blogs by "The Blogger Family" - mother and three sons - is an intimate view (view?... Makes one seem almost like a peeping tom!) of the personal life and aspirations getting intertwined with history:
  • Mom's Blog: A Family in Baghdad
  • Khalid: Tell Me a Secret
  • Raed in Middle: I guess this is the Raed who wrote with Salam Pax!
  • Majid: Me vs. Myself

    News/Reports from the Frontline:
  • Dahr Jamail's Weblog
    Dahr Jamail's Iraq Dispatches are the reports from the trenches. He is a professional journalist, who, disenchanted by the mainstream media, decided to be on his own

  • Healing Iraq
    Maintained by Zeyad, this has some detailed posting about the events and happenings in Iraq, and his views about them.

  • Free Iraq.. It should actually read "Let's Free Iraq"
    A daily collection of news items about Iraq, specially about the US actions in and against Iraq.

    ... there are many more blogs, of course... maybe I will post them in one of the later posts...

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