Keeping hope alive in Baghdad

Mohammed of Iraq the Model is back in violence-racked Baghdad after a week at a blogging seminar in relatively-peaceful Cairo. Perhaps it’s the triumph of hope over reality, but he has some interesting things to say:

It may sound a bit odd but that’s really what I felt in Egypt that I don’t feel in my war-torn city; for the first time in 3 years I felt the restrains of government…I told one of my colleagues I feel safe in Baghdad despite the dangers, I may feel afraid of terrorists or random violence but I never fear the government and that’s not only how I feel, Iraqis are not afraid of expressing their differences with the authority because we in Iraq have more or les became part of that authority the day we elected our representatives while terrorists and militias are nothing more than temporary phenomenon that unlike constitution and elections have no solid foundations.

Of course our democratic foundations need a lot of work to meet our aspirations but we are walking this road and none of us is willing to go back and maybe the three thousands that were murdered last month tell that Iraqis are ready to pay the price and fight to preserve and improve our achievements. The magnitude of the change explains the confusion in some of our steps but we have not given up and we’re not ready to surrender, not yet.

I suppose some will read these words and conclude that the constant violence has driven him out of his mind. Or maybe, having lived through the horrors of Saddam Hussein’s regime, he is able to perceive some glimmer that you and I can’t.