Saturday, April 28, 2007

a sad place

We walked from Shields to the Baghdad Police College, which is adjacient. There are shots in the distance; they seem to take even less notice here than we do on Slayer. I guess for the Americans it's still something different, the whole deal of being here and the explosions and the fighting. We keep it separate in our minds because we know - we want - something apart from here to be able to go back to. This place is just a long interuption to our real lives back in the world. That's part of the key to it all - for most of us, that real world still exists. For the Iraqis there is no R&R, no rotations home after 12 or 15 months. I think when Americans start to cross this real world line - when they forget the "other" place they came from - that is when you start to live the war, instead of just visiting.

They are converting some old dorms into housing for the new Iraqi judiciary. The mortality rate for those who serve on the bench has sky-rocketed over the past year or so, and I guess grouping them all together here makes it easier to protet them. In the shadow of the MOI building. Rule of law, and all. My opinion is that it makes for one big, fat, juciy target.

Just behind the building is a walled-in spot of grass - not too big, really, but any grass is unusual here. It's a playground with little play ground things - painted tires and monkey bars and stuff. And fours guys carrying AK-47's in the corners. This is for the children of the judges who will live in the dorms.

And as I stare at it, I realize that this little rectangle of real estate represents yet another reality - that of the children at war. That of a childhood punctuated by gunshots and check points dangerous shadows in the night and relatives who disappear and never come back. Suffer, little children.... I wish that I could bring you to my world.

I don't think about it.


Post a Comment

<< Home