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  Is the Price Worth It?
 

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 By: Nadine Fazza, Lana Haddadin and Lina Naim*

* ninth graders at the National Orthodox School, Amman

 

The Iraqi people used to live happily and safely before the Gulf War. Since then, that great and successful country turned into a mourning place due to the merciless and irresponsible actions of the allied forces.

Every ten minutes, an Iraqi child dies as a result of the disastrous sanctions. People in Iraq are nowadays suffering severely from the lack of food, medicine and clean water. About twenty million people live in Iraq. Five hundred to one hundred thousand Iraqi children die every year. In the first eight months of the year 1991, forty seven thousand children died. Nothing whatsoever can justify the death of such a great number of people.

The Americans have devastated every aspect of Iraqi life, its economy, its educational, electrical and water systems. Iraqis are suffering from water borne diseases, malnutrition and many other “ incurable” diseases. The Iraqis are cruelly being tortured.

During the Gulf War, the Americans bombed the shelter where Iraqi civilians were hiding, and killed hundreds of men, women and innocent children who were fighting for a better life away from all kinds of violence. This shelter that was destroyed without mercy is known as “ Al-Ammeriah Shelter”.

The children in Iraq are the real victims; the allied forces have destroyed their future and that of their country. When Madeline Albright was once interviewed, the interviewer asked,” we have heard that half a million children have died, that is more than those who died in Hiroshima. Is the price worth it?” The U.S. representative answered,” we think the price is worth it.”

Everyone has the right to be educated; this right should extend to all people. Unfortunately, the Iraqi children study in schools that have leaky roofs, broken windows and few supplies. Others are supporting their families by running in the streets in request of subsistence.

Three hundred fifty nuclear wastes were thrown on Iraq. These fatal wastes caused a tremendous increase in cancer rates. Furthermore, the Iraqi people are deprived of basic anesthesia to ease their pain. Drug houses also have few supplies of medicine. The situation in Iraq is intolerable and the suffering is unimaginable. We all have to contribute in helping the Iraqis through their ordeal and try to stop the embargo and sanctions against them.

What happened in Iraq will be imposed in our memories, and whenever we remember how Iraqis were, and still are, mistreated, we will ask ourselves, “ Is the price really worth it?”

 

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