On Wednesday, June 19, 2013, The Hanoudi Letter site reached the 200,000 mark. This was a great thrill and a wonderful accomplishment, not because I deserved that honor, but because it was a genuine acknowledgment of the blog’s usefulness and its fairness and honesty in the way it presented the news and the facts it provided during its four and a half years of existence, but I would like to emphasize that this modest work has been to a great extent the result of the selfless and very generous encouragement and support from a countless number of people,who with their interest and backing kept the spirit alive and helped me survive the very turbulent and stormy last years of my life, to all these wonderful people I would like to say, thank you very much and god bless you and protect you. Now, I am going to say few words about the story of the birth of TheHanoudi Letter, and go back to four updates which mean a great deal to me personally, because they represent my attitude and reaction to the problems our very troubled world.
When I started contemplating this blog, I was very hesitant and extremely worried. I was hesitant because I imagined that I would not have the stamina and the time to keep it going. I was worried that what I would be talking about would not to be good enough to the intelligent and sophisticated audience to whom it was mainly directed. But I was greatly encouraged to go ahead by four outstanding people, a lady, a radio journalist, two American army officer and one of my nephews who is an excellent computer specialist, these astonishing persons werevery kind, and very supportive and helped me make up mind,and now after four and a half years my worries seems to have been needless and unwarranted, the blog has in fact been a reasonable success. Now I am including excerpts from four previous updates, because of its great significance and their meaning to me. The first is the one which appeared on the blogon January 2005, which was called, America and the Current Iraqi Mess.
Do not agree with everything the gurus of the Bush administration or the pundits from the major media organizations or even the great experts in international relations tell you about the situation in Iraq, because these people are not in touch with the realities of the situation on the ground, what they are saying is not emanating from the field. The current situation in Iraq is very dangerous and absolutely chaotic, it is a total mess and is affecting every facet of the lives of the Iraqis. It is posing incredible dangers to the survival and future of the country and to the Americans as well. The future is worrying and totally unpredictable. There is a great deal of suffering and death and destruction. All of this pain and agony could have been averted had the Bush Administration honored the promises they repeatedly pledged to the Iraqis when they were planning Operation Iraqi Freedom.
The second abridgment is from the update which appeared onJuly 2007, which was called, The Middle East: A Boiling Cauldron, very tense and explosive.
The Middle East is a large stretch of land which is made up of varying size countries almost all their societies are polarized and seething with conflicts and violence, a boiling cauldron. Thesecountries are mostly Arabic speaking, unquestionablyinterconnected which makes dealing with them separately and in isolation a very naïve and an inadequate approach and tends to complicate and inflame an already very tense and potentially highly explosive situation. And this is exactly what happened.
On December 17, 2010, a young street peddler, driven by despair by the local police in the Tunisian city of Sidi Bouzid, 265 kilometers south of the Tunisian capital set himself on fire, this act of self-immolation triggered days of unrest, which spread all over the country and forced the Ben Ali the country’s president to flee the country on January 12, 2011 and seek asylum in Saudi Arabia. The desperate act of the young Tunisian and the horror it triggered spread to the whole Middle East and set it ablaze in an appalling conflagration.
On February 11, 2011, the eighty two years old Hosni Mubarak of Egypt was forced after thirty years in power, after resisting a very vigorous uprising against him by defiant crowds who were occupying a major square in downtown Cairo, Mubarak was forced to resign and was later put under arrest. This was followed by similar events in Libya and culminated in arresting,Moammar Qaddafi who has been in power since February 1969 and murdering him. And then the fever spread to Syria two years ago which is currently going through a self-immolation which is involving the whole country, which has already claimed unbelievable numbers of dead, injured and hundreds of thousands of people who were forced to leave their homes and seek refuge in neighboring countries.
I would like to emphasize now that these events did not erupt out of thin air, they had deep historical roots. The Arabs have been fighting for their rights for more than a generation against their rulers who were kept on their thrones by foreign masters, in the beginning of what the western powers call, the Arab spring which was a very genuine struggle by the people to regain their lost rights has turned into a real mess as result of the interference, subtle and overt of very powerful Middle Eastern and foreign powers who are now in danger of losing their huge interests in the Arab world and trying desperately to keep those interests by siding with the despised rulers like what they are doing now in Syria.
The third update I am coming back to is called, The Hanoudi Tragedy: Part Three, There Was No Miracle, it was inserted in the blog on October 2012, few months after the passing away of my son Nazar who has been during the last eight in a vegetative state which he went into after he was shot indiscriminately and without any justification, by an American soldier in Baghdad on the fateful morning of Monday March 29, 2004, my son’sstruggle for dear life lasted for eight years, his condition was a very difficult and extremely complicated one, a patient in a vegetative state is not dead but he is not alive like other human beings, it is extremely difficult to manage in a classical medical approach, so we were always hoping for a miracle, but it wasfutile and on December 21, 2011 he died in the hospice of William Beaumont hospital in Royal Oak/Michigan. There was no miracle.
And now for the last of the previous updates, the one which appeared on March 2013, which was called, The 2003 Iraq War: Two Anniversaries and the War’s Legacy.
March 19, 2013 marks the tenth anniversary of the Iraq War, the war was started by the second Bush on March 19, 2003. March2013, also marks the ninth anniversary of the shooting by an American soldier of my son Nazar in Baghdad on the 29th of March 2004. The Bush administration started the war, they said, to save the world from the menacing stockpiles of Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destruction and to free the Iraqi people from the jaws of his murderous regime to be followed by some kind of a Marshal plan to help the Iraqis rebuild their country which was crumbling after the long years of Saddam’s cruel dictatorship. The Iraqi people have always been dreaming about a miracle like that, but were never in a position to realize their dream because of the paralyzing fear which was inculcated in them by the police state which Saddam has created, very sadly the dream turned into ordeal and the hopes became a cruel deception. But I am not talking about the anniversary of the nightmare, into which we were plunged as a result of that terrible incident now, because I have already written a book about it , The Hanoudi Tragedy. I am going to say few words about the legacy of the war, and what it has done to America’s prestige and its standing in the world.
The United States celebrated the departure of her troops from Iraq, on December 2011, but as the Iraqis prepare to mark the anniversary, which they call the "Day of Sovereignty," the celebratory tone has been replaced by a more somber one. One year after U.S. troops left, much about a post-war Iraq remains unclear, the Iraqis who are supposed to be recovering from the long war are still facing bombs and battles, the returning Americans soldiers who are trying to re-adjusting to life in the United States and very large segments of Americans are wondering whether their involvement in that country and the heavy cost they paid for that involvement was worthwhile.
Thursday, June 20, 2013