I got this message via an email:
“Dr. Zaydan has written to
In 2003, shortly after the U.S. invaded Iraq, Dr. Zaydan, a successful Baghdad doctor (pharmacist) and business woman sold her pharmacy and created an organization that networks homes, food, and supplies for widows and orphans in Iraq, Palestine, Afghanistan, and Lebanon. Dr. Zaydan also cared for her four children and her aging parents. Her youngest, not twelve, has suffered this war since she was eight. Her husband, a successful engineer, is very supportive of her peace work despite their own struggles in
In March 2006, Dr. Rashad Zaydan was one of only five Iraqi women given a two week visa to come to the
More about the Iraqi Women’s Tour HERE. This tour was arranged by Code Pink.
Code Pink has made a DVD about this tour, called Iraqi Women Speak. I bought a copy, watched it, and passed it on to the local progressive radio station. Dr. Zaydan spoke about her young daughter in this DVD, and how she called home and her daughter said she was so proud of her mother for trying to get peace for the people of
Below is Dr. Zaydan’s letter to
A year has passed since my last visit to your state. I tried my best during that long trip to reach you all: statesmen, representatives, peace makers, teachers, students, ordinary people, VIPs, religious men, parents of US soldiers and even children. I tried hard to tell you the truth about what was happening in my country
. I was far away from any watching eyes of politicians or media. Iraq
I have spent my life with the eyes of a mother watching her children growing up healthy, well educated, and useful to their people. I hoped their future would be great. Their dreams would come true. They would find promising jobs. They would be happily married. But, I find that my country has been occupied by foreign forces, with hundreds of thousands of civilians killed and some more thousands detained, and millions of unemployed, in addition to the destruction of all infrastructure. My hopes and dreams may not come true.
, there are three million widows and some more orphans, along with a sectarian government supported by the occupier and neighboring countries. It was very painful for me to see for many times bodies of dead people thrown in the streets without being able to do anything other than crying. The medical oath I have sworn when I graduated from college to help any needy people seems as a dream from the past. Last year, many people asked me if I was concerned about the sectarian war that may break up in case the Iraq would pull its troops. I always answered, “If this sectarian war is possible, it would have happened three years ago during the first days of the invasion when there were no authority in the country.” That did not happen. Our state was not built that way since it was born in 1921. The principles of the new state made by the present occupier do establish for this sectarian violence. Moreover, the borders of my country have not been well guarded. Fighters from different countries with different agendas kindle the fire of violence and keep it burning on and on. US
What I did during my visit was to ask all of you to help stop this crisis and to listen for a while to the voices of widows, orphans, handicapped, wounded, grieving parents and all other victims of this mad war. I hoped your press would change something in our life. I hoped 2006 would not end before my country becomes free. Then, I will be able to take my children to school safely. I’ll be able to say “Hello” to my neighbors without being afraid of the shootings or bombings. I’ll see my son being wed in an ordinary ceremony with all my relatives and friends attending the wedding and celebrating late at night without being worried lest the curfew starts without being able to go back home. But my dream did not come true. I only see the number of widows sky rocketing, the orphans crying louder, the dead bodies scattered over pavements and garbage, the sick people getting worse with no hope of improving, resources shortening thin, houses being emptied of their inhabitants, universities emptied of their professors.
I heard that the voting of some of you changed. But I didn’t get any tangible results from it. On the contrary, some more 21000
soldiers are packing their gears to come. Some of them have reached, while the others are supposed to come during these two months. US
I was asked by one of my American friends who helped me last year to write a letter to you on the fourth anniversary for the invasion of my country. I can’t find more words to say. I just have one more thing to add. Try hard to stop this tragedy for the sake of yourselves, your families, your human rights principles, your true belief in freedom and democracy. All this violence will reverse on you and your generation. I once heard a professor in English said, “Violence breeds violence.” This is what your government is breeding. Try hard to convince your government to use your money in a wise way. Let it spread education, improve health care, achieve peace instead of killing and bombing civilians. Now you are paying for the deaths of your sons, for the disabilities of your brothers, for the misfortunes of your daughters, for the destruction of your resources. Let alone the death, disability, misfortune and destruction of my nation.
Dr. Rashad Zaydan
– 5th March, 2007 Baghdad
A Video of Dr. Zaydan speaking in the USA in March 2006 can be found HERE. It is called "A Call For Peace." This talk includes pictures from
And here is a story about another one of the women that Code Pink brought to the
Speakers: ‘Leave Iraq to the Iraqis’
The words rushed out of Faiza Al-Araji. She called the Bush administration "criminals," new Iraqi leaders puppets and the media guilty of keeping Americans "ignorant and blind. The mission of the war is not a noble mission," she said. "It is a dirty mission. Saddam Hussein took people away. Now we are suffering from new criminals." Al-Araji is a civil engineer who managed a
water treatment company before the war began. She later paid ransom to free one of her three sons — whom she said the Iraqi Ministry of the Interior jailed without filing a charge — then fled with her family to Jordan. Baghdad
Their message is clear – the
The website Alive In Baghdad, not at all connected to Code Pink, has a video clip of another women doctor from
"I want the American people to understand something, don’t be fooled. The democracy your government claims to bring to other countires is a lie, it’s untrue.
......We don’t want the US Government’s democracy. Spare us its evil.
......So please leave our country."
Also, over in Afghanistan things are not so good. Demonstrations were held there over the recent killing of civilians by US forces. One man was carrying a sign that said:
Killer Bush! Stop the Killings of Innocent Afghans. Down Down
As regards to
I am very clear on what the
I am really losing patience with the Americans who claim we should stay in
Today, about 2% of the Iraqi population is dead from the invasion and occupation. That would be equivalent to 6 million dead in the
Today, between 8% to 12% of the population of
Here are some photos of that show the current suffering of Iraqi people. If you are under the impression that no Iraqi civilian deaths are from
Dr. Zaydan talks about the poor state of health care in
It is genocide. The definition of genocide is the deliberate and systematic destruction of a racial, political or cultural group. The culture of
The only freedom we are bringing the Iraqi people is the freedom of the grave. The only democracy we are bringing the Iraqi people is the democracy of death.
bush/cheney and their administration does not care one whit what happens to the people of
They are in
On Saturday, March 17th please gather in