It has been a long 7 and a half years since the fall of Saddam, but Iraq is still facing terror, although in different forms and with no one person to blame. Attacks on infrastructure, civilians, governmental institutions and individuals have continued almost unabated (I don’t think there is one single day where there was no terrorist-related violence in Iraq). The numbers of dead and injured are horrifying, the cost to the economy depressing, but I am compelled to say something angrily despite all this; Iraq is still alive.
For years now there has been a sustained attack on all aspects of Iraq, by both Iraqis and foreigners. The damage has been great, yet arguably we still have more freedoms than the rest of the Middle East, we have an infantile democracy and we are still there. No other country in the world has been subjected to as much violence as Iraq has these past few years. No other nation has been brutalized in absolutely shocking ways for such a long period. I do not discount terrorism in other countries, but if 11 September is a marker for such a spectre, then we have had 20 of those in Iraq so far.
I argue that no other country would have been able to withstand such a sustained attack, to limp along so far despite heavy wounds, to still try and stay upright despite the blows from all sides. The motives for the terrorism are wide and varied, some political, some religious, some just evil. Yet it is remarkable that the majority of Iraqis still get up in the morning and try to live normal lives, to do the best they can for themselves and their families, when their pain is so much. So a message to everyone who does not want a prosperous Iraq, you did your best but we’re still here and we aren’t going anywhere.