Do Something!,  Iraq

Help Iraqi orphans

As a result of the sectarian and terrorist violence unleashed by reactionary and anti-democratic forces in Iraq, there has been an increase in the number of Iraqi orphans. However, resources for orphans are insufficient in Iraqi at present:

As violence finally fades and U.S. troops prepare to withdraw, sociologists and health experts say the children’s reactions to such trauma could threaten Iraq’s fragile calm just as it needs stability to rebuild.

“The issue is not a place where they can sleep and eat,” said psychiatrist Haider Abdul-Muhsin. “More important than that is whether they can find peace inside themselves.

“It is to be expected that when you have a high percentage of orphans and deprived people in Iraq, you will have a corresponding increase in crime and violence in the future.”

No one knows how many children had parents torn from them by the war, or the conflicts waged by Saddam against Kuwait and Iran. Some fathers were hanged or shot under Saddam.

Samira al-Moussawi, head of the women’s, children’s and families’ committee in parliament, said if there are a million widows in Iraq, there are probably three million orphans.

The number of orphanages by comparison is small, and scant money is spent on the children by the government. Each orphan registered with the Labour and Social Affairs Ministry — and not many are — is allocated 15,000 Iraqi dinars, or around $12, a month.

Helping Iraqi orphans is one way of securing the future of Iraq as a peaceful and prosperous nation. Here are the words of one child:

Saif Salah Hisham, an eight year-old boy, also lost his parents to an explosion. He was four at the time.

“I feel comfortable in this house,” he said. “I say to the terrorists who killed my parents, ‘God forgive you.’ I want to be a policeman when I grow up to protect my country and stop the terrorists from killing people.”

The Uk registered charity Iraqi Orphans Foundation exists to help Iraqi orphans, and seem a legitimate way for UK citizens to help:

The war on terror has had negative effects on Iraq and its people. Terrorists and suicide bombers have caused several deaths of innocent civilians on an almost daily basis. No one is spared in these deadly events, no man, woman or child. For children who lose one or both parents, becoming an orphan is a bleak prospect. No father to feed them, no mother to wipe their tears.