Friday, August 24, 2007


by Mohammed

2 days ago , At 4:00 pm I came home from a trip to buy my wife something beautiful and elegant as a graduation gift (which is impossible to find) I came home empty handed , I was so annoyed that there are few good shops in Baghdad and with stuff that has no taste at all , I was so sad that I couldn't find anything that is good enough for this great occasion (My wife's graduation).

As I reached home and changed , the bell rang !! who would come to visit us?I haven't heard this bell for a long time now!I thought it is not working any more , I immediately went to the kitchen to see who's on the door , There was 5 American Soldiers and Two Humvees on my door!! Oh , God , I wish that there is nothing wrong , I walked through the garage and as I reached the outer gate wearing shorts only , I noticed the troops smiling I was relieved because as I think this means that it's a normal routine check , My house hasn't been checked before.

I opened the gate they said "SALAM O ALAEKM" I smiled as they said so , I told them that I speak English so I don't need an interpreter , some of the interpreters are dangerous they work as double agents, they work with the Troops and at the same time they give information either to a militia or a gang , but the interpreter came in with them , one of the troops said :"We wish you don't mind if we came in?" I told him that there is nothing wrong , I'm glad and asked him for one minute just to tell my wife so she can be ready.

They waited in the garage and I told my wife to be ready , then I came out to them and asked them to come in , they walked through the house just looking around , it was obvious that I'm a peaceful man , they were so civilized and very nice , they did nothing that bothered me , they were very nice , in fact , I had fun talking to them , as one of them was kidding with me "If I were you , I'd throw parties here , with lots of whisky ...Do you have whisky?"I laughed and said no , there were amazed by the home the lieutenant asked me if I had worked before as an interpreter, and i said no , "where did you learn this American accent?" , he asked.later we sat down in the kitchen I gave them Soda , and the lieutenant who was a very nice man started talking to me about the electricity issue and that they are trying to improve it specially in this good , peaceful neighborhood as he said , he said that they have a plan to block this area from the neighboring areas with blocks and main gate guarded by people from within the neighborhood not the police or the army , I though this is a good idea but they should be careful when selecting these guys , that's what i told them.

Then he talked about how they are going to rebuild the schools of the neighborhood , and we had a few laughs as we were kidding with each other , I figured out that they want to be friendly with this neighborhood and build good relations , as he said it has been 6 months we haven't been targeted in this neighborhood "WE LOVE THIS NEIGHBORHOOD" as he shouted , then the lieutenant gave me a mobile number and asked me to call if anything wrong is happening or if i saw a false checkpoint , or any other security issue I face.

They talked about how bad Adhamyia is , as one of them said I hate it there , we are attacked all day long , we can't do things like what we are doing now , then they left the house and started to check other houses in the block, I figured that it's better for both of us , It's better for the US troops to be friendly with the people in the neighborhood as they will be safer , and better for the civilians if the troops feel safe in their area so they will stay there so this means that the neighborhood will be safer , that's my opinion but many disagree with me , such as my neighbor who said that they are the root of every trouble in Iraq , they caused everything , i told him that if what you say is true , then you should blame the US government not the soldiers they are people like you and me , they do what they have been told , they didn't choose it , he didn't agree with that , he asked me , what about the people who were killed by the US troops only because they were in the street the minute they got attacked ? I was unable to answer this question , but i told him that you are right , but I'll give you their excuse , they say that they are in a hot zone , they got attacked they are scarred so they started shooting everyone because everyone is a suspect to them and in this way people will hate and prevent anyone who want to attack the US troops , I think this is the plan , I have nothing certain , but what I found out that those guys were very nice and polite , I wish that all the US army is like them but it's impossible to have such a large number as the American Army and all of them are good guys.

Mohammed is a dentist living in war-torn Baghdad.For security reason he writes under a pseudonym.

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