Friday, February 23, 2007
Baghdad: Living in fear
My friend has lived in
How his life has changed.
I spoke with Rashid on the one year anniversary of the bombing of the Golden Dome al-Askariya mosque in
Rashid’s best friend was Shia, one of about 20 Shia friends he had in his neighborhood. Rashid and his buddy would get together almost every day. “We would share a coffee, a cigarette, a game of cards. If we couldn’t meet face to face, we would always find a way to talk on the phone.” With the
Rashid’s friend picked up his family and left the neighborhood five days later. They still have not spoken since February 22, 2006, and will likely never speak again. Years of friendship vanished in an instant.
A year later, life in
Rashid worries constantly, even if he can hide that pain from his face. His two girls go to the same school. Recently, a mortar landed close by, shattering the school's windows and terrifying classrooms filled with young, innocent girls. His wife and young son stay at home, protected by a neighborhood watch that has grown from two guards to 14 armed men in the past year. His wife sometimes tells him to stay away, afraid that the death squads will come to their neighborhood again, take him away and turn him into another of the unidentified bodies found floating in the
Rashid is desperate to leave
“The bloodshed will continue,” he says. “We are close to all-out civil war. All it will take is for something else big to happen … And it will happen.”
From CNN Producer Terence Burke
ABOUT THIS BLOGHear from CNN reporters across the globe. "In the Field" is a unique blog that will let you share the thoughts and observations of CNN's award-winning international journalists from their far-flung bureaus or on assignment. Whether it's from conflict zone, a summit gathering, or the path least traveled, "In the Field" gives you a personal, front row seat to CNN's global newsgathering team.