23 Aug 2008
In my private classes , I came to know many new girls, and they are all nice and co-operative. I like them and they like me, we took photos together and we keep talking for along time with each other about different things . these friends told me stories I see I should mention here.
S, Z and A, are good girls indeed, and they live in a neighborhood in Mosul, this neighborhood will be named here as X.
A told me that she had left Iraq for the years 2006 and 2007 –April/ 2008, moved to Syria (where many Iraqis headed for in the hard times, there is safety and comfort, Syria doesn’t ask for visa and it is cheap for most families there. families who moved there absolutely were threatened by terrorists, or were about to be kidnapped or murdered or ..), and she was so thankful to go there, she could miss the most horrible times that X as well as the other quarters of Mosul witnessed.
Once, Z and S were in the class, when many veiled guys entered their school forcedly( high schools in Iraq are divided into two kinds, schools for boys and schools for girls, so boys shouldn't enter girls schools and girls shouldn’t enter boys schools), and entered the classes and began to shout madly. They came with the name of religion , saying that they were there to teach the girls the true teachings of Islam, and they were seeking girls who didnt wear hijab, and every girl who didn't wear socks , in addition to the cover of hair, would be punished and beaten ( it was summer, and most girls wear sandals so, but those guys wouldn’t agree with that, the true hijab as they believe is that the girl should wear socks, cover of hair and black gloves, she must only show her face, or to wear Burqu' to hide the face too !!!). Girls began to scream and cry and teachers turned very angry, but no one could speak. The guys were armed, and they were angry for no main reason, just thinking that with anger everyone would obey and submit.
Later, the headmistress came to them and asked them to leave the school peacefully , she promised them that every girl will wear the true hijab and everything will be ok as they want, and they will be pleased.
Then, the guys left school.
Z and S said that they had cried bitterly at that time, they thought they would be killed in any moment, many armed guys around them , and any one could press the trigger!!
Z said that after that event, her parents wouldn’t let her go to school for a month, she said
'' Oh Soleil, you don’t know what happened to me at that time. you know? I could bear the horrible scenes, every day I was seeing a man bleeding heavily, killed people and injured ones asking for help and no one was moving on my way to school, no no, everytime when I want to have a look at the street I see bodies in front of our house!!But I decided to bear that all. Not after that event, and my parents' insistence was unbreakable. I kept stuck at home for 1 month and a half, and every day I felt that my fear was increasing, I always saw very bad nightmares in the night, and imagining my family to be killed. I was so terrified, but gradually, it went away. Thank God!! It went away!! After that, I decided to be stronger, no matter and came back to school, the guys were coming from time to time there, but not these days. " ok, I really admire Z for her courage. Woww, maybe I would be died in the same moment.
I kept silent while they were talking, actually, I was terrified only with words, how about if I lived those moments?!!!She said that those happenings made many people lose hopes, many people left , just like A's family. She said that she knew a family lived in their street, and all this family members died as martyrs under their house debris when a car bomb exploded near them, and other Shia families left the neighborhood too, there is no one Shi'i there now .
"all the shi'it families left my neighborhood, but the all, sunnis and shi'its were victims of the main wicked direction, we all believe so, and we all hope to see our friends , sisters and brothers taking their way back home" Z added.
" but nowadays, the situation is so much better. Although there are many checkpoints on the roads, and this causes jams and make us miss lectures sometimes, but it's ok, it is greatly better than without checkpoints. But you know what Soleil? I hope the situation is better without checkpoints. I wonder, shall we live with checkpoints for life??!!!" S added.
I answered with no word.
" were the families there satisfied with this religious calling as those guys came with? What do the families say? Why couldn’t you all stand against the bad guys? If you were all together, hand in hand, you would overcome them all" I asked
" NO!! the families were always deeply sad about this but no one could speak, , it was unbearable. Soleil, you asked to be together against them? Oh!! Who will be able to stand against them?? They all were completely well armed ,and they had a secret power to support them, and actually we didn’t want to lose our fathers and brothers. We needed policemen and national guards, and thankfully they are here now. Although the situation is not perfect, we hope it will improve soon" they answered.
" but I don't like hijab, what about you Z?" I asked.
" Soleil, I dislike it but once, I was taking my way home, I wasn’t wearing hijab that time, an old man , with heavy bear saw me, I was 13 years old, and he slapped me and said that I had to wear it" She answered.
The saddest thing is that those guys came with the name of religion. It is all lies, it is all false. Religion doesn’t come with force. " there is no force in religion"/ the holy Koran.
Ok ,talking about hijab, my thought is that we shouldn’t force women to wear al-hijab, and we shouldn’t make them take it off if they want to wear it. Hijab actually is one of the most personal issues. I believe they didn’t have the right to do that.
Let me mention, that in school a teacher came to me and asked me to wear hijab, and she actually brought me one as a present, and began to explain the idea for me, that without hijab all my faith is untrue. I felt so embarrassed at that time, I didn’t want to refuse her request, I admire her so much and couldn’t say no. so I took it, and kept wearing it on the way home-school and home-market, because all the girls wear hijab and everyone would notice that I'm different from them, and many inquiries could be asked, I don’t want this to happen.
But I kept telling the teacher saying
" miss, please , listen, I love to explain my idea for you, although I'm going to wear it as you like, but I just want you to know the truth that I won't wear it forever. I don’t dislike hijab, I see it is ok, but I also see that personal freedom is the most important. Miss, religion for me is not hijab, it is deeds to do , sayings to tell , symbols to make and stories to take the morals from. Miss, the important thing for me is that I love others, do my best to stand by their side and to help them, I love to learn, learning leads me to do the best for the others, my country and lead me to create more, religion is also to do God's orders because I believe that everything Gods asks me to do is true, say truths and keep others' secrets, these are the main teachings of Islam. ", she hugged me after that and answered with no word but " Soleil , you are more beautiful with hijab :D.
99,7% of girls at school wear hijab and many of them intervene in others' personal issues by saying that who doesnt wear hijab all her deeds will be unacceptable. And I was always explaining my thoughts for them, but they don’t listen.
I know a girl in my class who always intended to refuse the idea of hijab, and she said that she would always stand by my side and we both would explain our true thoughts for the others, but suddenly I found out that she agreed with the idea of wearing hijab( agreed to oppose herself)!!!! and she told me once " ok, I went to our relatives' house wearing it, and they were surprised by my new look, they liked me with it, I will wear it always. It is fine Soleil, I read a book about it and decided to change my idea" then I knew from another friend of us, that she bought an abaya to wear it in the market!! And she had already told me that no one in the world would make her wear abaya!!! It is an example I mention to tell you that the circumstances and force can make the person change all his/her ideas and didn’t obey his/her conscience , but obey the general desire , so where is the freedom??
But today, it's ok, last time I went to the market without hijab, it was fine.
In Baghdad, there nothing like this, better freedom than here.
And to talk about the security today, it is better too, although I heard two explosions today, but it is improving, lately, Mosul airport was opened by the minister of transportations. And najef airport had been opened before this time. it is my pleasure to hear about this, it leads me to imagine our future in our blessed country.
I have also heard in the news that the US offers scholarships for the Iraqi smart students to continue their studying in the west. It sounds fine, because Iraqi education procession needs to be improved, many of the good doctors left Iraq, teachers, engineers, actors, poets, artists and …
So, within next few years everything will be ok, especially if we put our hands in each others'.
And if we remember the other part of talking " all th shi'it families left my neighborhood, but all, sunnis and shi'its were victims of the main wicked direction".
I one of my friend's cousins(who is shi'it) has married a sunni guy and they live now in al-adhmiyya in Baghdad.
Many of my uncles have married women from different sects.
The great thing is that the true, cultured and educated Iraqis believe that the gang who dislodges people from a shi'it quarter is the same who does the similar thing to other people in a sunni quarter. Actually MOST Iraqis have already believed in that, the sectarian fightings are SOOO much less than before, actually there is not anymore. I know many friends who had come from Basrah to Mosul as displaced ,and the all came back home, and while they were here I have never heard them that Shia in Basrah made them go, no, I know a man very close friend to daddy and he said once " all my close friends are Shia, and when they heard that i had been threatened they all gathered money to give me to give to the terrorists and offered me to stay at their houses, they would protect me and my family, and I'm here now after i let my house under their control" .
Sometimes I am asked by some men whether I'm sunni or Shi'I, my answer always come as " I wonder, was Muhammad –may peace and God's blessings be upon him- born to be sunni or shi'i? or was Jesus Christ was born to be Christian?"
All the religions and all the sects come for one reason, bringing the benefit for the humans. I have learnt that all the religions call for one main aim, that we all should live peacefully.
And with every new day, we see that, how many cultures are there in the world? So many indeed, and we are all on the same planet. Should who differs with us in liturgy leave to Mars? No, we are all the children of God .
I feel that the great time is so near, even though there is something bad here or there, but it's ok, we are on the true way…