Sunday, April 4th, 2004
From Baghdad Burning:
There’s also a new ‘Mukhaberat’ or “National Iraqi Intelligence Organization” (or something to that effect). The irony is that while the name is new and the head is Ali Abd Ul Ameer Allawi (a relative of the Puppet Council President Ayad Allawi), the faces of the new Mukhaberat promise to be some of the same as the old. They’ve been contacting the old members of the Iraqi Mukhaberat for months and promising them lucrative jobs should they decide to join the new Iraqi intelligence (which, we hope, will be an improvement on American intelligence- Id hate to have us invade a country on false pretenses).
The weather is quite nice lately (with the exception of dust every once in a while). We spend the electricity-less evenings out in the little garden. We pull out plastic chairs and a little plastic table and sit around gazing at the sky, which is marvelously clear on many nights. E. is thinking of starting a count the stars project. Hes going to allot a section of the sky to each member of the family and have them count the number of stars in their designated astral plot. Im thinking of starting a cricket choir with some very talented six-legged pests located under a dried-out rose bush…
In a few days, Ill have to go up and wash out the roof or sattih. Last year, wed sleep on top of the roof on the hot nights without electricity. We lay out thin mattresses on the clean ground and wet some sheets to cover ourselves with. Its not too bad until around 6 a.m. when the sun rises high in the sky and the flies descend upon the sleepers like… well, like flies.
These last couple of weeks have been somewhat depressing for most people. You know how sometimes you look back at the past year and think to yourself, What was I doing last year, on this same day? Well weve been playing that game constantly lately. What was I doing last year, this very moment? I was listening for the sirens, listening for the planes and listening to the bombs fall. Now we just listen for the explosions- its not the same thing.
Even in the heart of it, the night sky is a reminder of order. In such a case, how far away is that sky?