An incredible story from Iraq

As far as I know, the following story has not been picked up by the US media, and that is definitely a mistake. You will see why shortly. Out of all places, I found this amazing piece in one of the most virulently Anti—American newspapers in Paris, Le Monde, in the June 25, 2004 issue.

The French reporter tells the story of an Iraqi from Tikrit, Saddam's hometown, who recently saved the lives of four US soldiers.

This hero wants to be called 'Ahmed' because he does not want his true identity revealed. Ahmed fears that if anyone found out, his house would be hit right away by a rocket. He adds that he can only speak to the reporter because he is in a café in Baghdad, and not in Tikrit. Ahmed is very upset by the terror instilled by the insurgents. He remarks that even in mosques, imams cannot speak about non—violence —— otherwise their lives are threatened. 

Ahmed then explains what happened on a Friday in June around Tikrit. He was picnicking with his sister and nephews when they saw an overturned US Humvee. They approached the vehicle and saw that four American soldiers injured, including two unconscious ones. At first, the soldiers were scared because they were quite certain that Ahmed was going to kill them. But then when they saw the whole family around, the soldiers grew less worried.

Ahmed doesn't speak a word of English, but nevertheless remembered the word 'relax ,' and tried to explain with his hands that he would take them to the hospital. But the soldiers began yelling 'NO, NO,' and asked Ahmed to take them to the US base. So, Ahmed took the two unconscious soldiers in his car and drove them to the nearest American base, while his sister stayed with the other two.

Upon arrival at the base, Ahmed was arrested, because the American soldiers obviously did not understand his Arabic explanation. But a translator soon sorted out the situation and told the soldiers from the base to go with Ahmed to fetch the two injured remaining soldiers. And they did. The GIs wanted to thank Ahmed with money, but he refused categorically and told them that he did not need any reward. Ahmed wanted more than anything else that his identity be kept secret because otherwise he would be killed on the spot by the insurgents.

Ahmed's wisdom about the situation in Iraq is incredible. He is very grateful to the US. That is what he had to say: 'The Americans did not come alone and without support in Iraq. Four million Iraqis residing abroad and millions of Iraqis inside the country were totally behind them. The proof is that nobody fought to save Saddam's regime. Today, an honest Iraqi citizen can only call for the American departure. But I believe we have to help them leave in a peaceful manner. The guerillas only sabotage. They are the biggest obstacle to the reconstruction of Iraq.'

This incredible story should be used by the Bush administration to show that Iraq is not a one—way street, as the New York Times or Washington Post reporters would want us to believe.

There are still a lot of Iraqis ready to risk their lives to save our soldiers. Even more of them are grateful for what the Coalition did and are tired of the guerillas attacking Americans and Iraqis alike. The new hospitals and schools built in the past months by the Coalition are also a huge morale—booster, but unfortunately this does not make it to our media.        

Antoine Sfeir, one of the leading experts of the Arab world, who cannot, according to himself, be considered as a pro—American individual, just came back from Iraq. He affirmed that there is no quagmire and that he thinks that the US is winning the battle of Iraq. He is tired of people in the European media claiming that Iraq is the New Vietnam or Somalia. He added that Iraqis are living their lives and making do, and are especially happy to be rid of Saddam.

So, concerning Iraq, I would rather believe Antoine Sfeir —— who does not like President Bush at all —— than the New York Times.

As far as I know, the following story has not been picked up by the US media, and that is definitely a mistake. You will see why shortly. Out of all places, I found this amazing piece in one of the most virulently Anti—American newspapers in Paris, Le Monde, in the June 25, 2004 issue.

The French reporter tells the story of an Iraqi from Tikrit, Saddam's hometown, who recently saved the lives of four US soldiers.

This hero wants to be called 'Ahmed' because he does not want his true identity revealed. Ahmed fears that if anyone found out, his house would be hit right away by a rocket. He adds that he can only speak to the reporter because he is in a café in Baghdad, and not in Tikrit. Ahmed is very upset by the terror instilled by the insurgents. He remarks that even in mosques, imams cannot speak about non—violence —— otherwise their lives are threatened. 

Ahmed then explains what happened on a Friday in June around Tikrit. He was picnicking with his sister and nephews when they saw an overturned US Humvee. They approached the vehicle and saw that four American soldiers injured, including two unconscious ones. At first, the soldiers were scared because they were quite certain that Ahmed was going to kill them. But then when they saw the whole family around, the soldiers grew less worried.

Ahmed doesn't speak a word of English, but nevertheless remembered the word 'relax ,' and tried to explain with his hands that he would take them to the hospital. But the soldiers began yelling 'NO, NO,' and asked Ahmed to take them to the US base. So, Ahmed took the two unconscious soldiers in his car and drove them to the nearest American base, while his sister stayed with the other two.

Upon arrival at the base, Ahmed was arrested, because the American soldiers obviously did not understand his Arabic explanation. But a translator soon sorted out the situation and told the soldiers from the base to go with Ahmed to fetch the two injured remaining soldiers. And they did. The GIs wanted to thank Ahmed with money, but he refused categorically and told them that he did not need any reward. Ahmed wanted more than anything else that his identity be kept secret because otherwise he would be killed on the spot by the insurgents.

Ahmed's wisdom about the situation in Iraq is incredible. He is very grateful to the US. That is what he had to say: 'The Americans did not come alone and without support in Iraq. Four million Iraqis residing abroad and millions of Iraqis inside the country were totally behind them. The proof is that nobody fought to save Saddam's regime. Today, an honest Iraqi citizen can only call for the American departure. But I believe we have to help them leave in a peaceful manner. The guerillas only sabotage. They are the biggest obstacle to the reconstruction of Iraq.'

This incredible story should be used by the Bush administration to show that Iraq is not a one—way street, as the New York Times or Washington Post reporters would want us to believe.

There are still a lot of Iraqis ready to risk their lives to save our soldiers. Even more of them are grateful for what the Coalition did and are tired of the guerillas attacking Americans and Iraqis alike. The new hospitals and schools built in the past months by the Coalition are also a huge morale—booster, but unfortunately this does not make it to our media.        

Antoine Sfeir, one of the leading experts of the Arab world, who cannot, according to himself, be considered as a pro—American individual, just came back from Iraq. He affirmed that there is no quagmire and that he thinks that the US is winning the battle of Iraq. He is tired of people in the European media claiming that Iraq is the New Vietnam or Somalia. He added that Iraqis are living their lives and making do, and are especially happy to be rid of Saddam.

So, concerning Iraq, I would rather believe Antoine Sfeir —— who does not like President Bush at all —— than the New York Times.