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Iraq's Women Fight to Hold Things Together.

Our Houses are Burning! Shall We Remain Silent?

A female Iraqi engineer laments the hopeless situation in her country and calls on the nation's women to rise up and expel the American and coalition forces, describing them as arsonists who have burned their land, their property and their livelihoods.

By Nour Al-Houda Al-Furaati

Edited by Rob Gibran

July 25, 2005

Original Article (Arabic) Translation provided by    

Baghdad: Itís been three years now, Iraq is in a complete vacuum, and Newtonís Law says that in weightlessness nothing has a value. That is the situation today in my country:† Everything is worthless Ö things keep changing, and no one can see through the thick fog.† Promises, thatís all we get, and plans, many plans Ö tons of papers and tens of international conferences. For the price of this paper and these summits, we could feed the Iraqi people for months.

Some of the Rations Given Out In Iraq

Unfortunately, this has been the Iraqi condition since the fall of Saddamís regime, and yet we keep hearing that tens of billions of dollars are being spent on Iraqi reconstruction.† Thatís what the Iraqi satellite TV channel says in its news bulletins and its political talk shows. But weíve only received rotten wheat and an empty ration card, and now our esteemed economics committee is threatening to discontinue even that!†

I wonder if Mr. Habib Al-Sadr, the manager of the Iraqi satellite channel, has heard the desperate cries of hungry Iraqi families for the ration card. Has he heard how the poor people are dressed these days? We wish he would tell us, when he appears on TV in his elegant black suit. I could almost smell the expensive French cologne through the screen!

This is the regrettable situation weíre in. Ever since March 19, 2003, when the American match lit the fire in Iraq, each day has become worse than the day before it. All has collapsed, and no one has stepped forward to put out the fire and the flames that have reached every corner of our land. Isnít it time that we save our lives and our identities?†

Of course it is.† And that is why we should all get to work, especially you, my Iraqi sister:† You are the pillar of this house, and your house is surrounded by deadly fire and flames.† Will you remain silent, or will you fight back?

First, you must safeguard your children and your husband. Second, you must maintain your identity as an Arab and an Iraqi, and defend this identity against any falsification.† Remember that your house is all of Iraq. Third, and after protecting our lives and our identities, we start to extinguish the fire.

The first principle of firefighting is to remove any fuel or combustible material from the vicinity of the flames to prevent them from spreading. Our fire is being kindled by the occupier, so we must figure out how to stop this kindling, which is comprised of all the occupierís allies who came with him and by his blessing.

Fire In the Hole. U.S. Troops on Duty

Your first priority is to move quickly from silence into action. You must warn your neighbors, especially your next-door neighbor, so that she will follow your example. Fire will not wait for an invitation to come in. Your first weapon is your voice, so shout loudly, at the top of your voice: FIRE FIRE FIRE!† You should then ask for assistance, but be sure to know who youíre asking help from. In times of crisis, thieves move in to steal, and they steal everything: your valuables, your honor, and your values.

Once the fire is put out, you must find the causes so that you can prevent future fires.† The best way to prevent fires is to be careful when using flammable items, and better yet not bring them into your house in the first place!

My fellow Iraqi women, in Iraq and outside it, our house is burning. Let us all work together to put the fire out! Let us reinforce our Iraqi citizenship and our Arab identity with national unity. Let us not allow anyone to falsify these tenets. Let us drive the occupation and all who supported it out of our land, because the occupier is the real arsonist, and the legitimacy of his supporters ended before this even began.

Prepare the fire extinguishers everywhere in Iraq, because the Iraqi national army is the only entity to be trusted with our land, and not some imported army. Start shouting out warnings at home, in the fields, in schools and universities. (We wonít say in factories, since there are no factories left in this new Iraq!)† Rise up, my fellow women, and speak out against what is taking place. This is not the time and place to remain silent.

Can you remain silent?† I doubt it, because you are the daughters of this noble land!


— Egyptian Television: Kidnapped and Held captive by al-Zarqawi, July 17, 00:02:37, MEMRI

“These are the purest people I've met. May Allah help them to deal with the injustice ... This is all I can say: injustice, injustice, injustice.”

Kidnapped and Held By al-Zarqawi

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