Tuesday, August 07, 2007

An Iraqi Interpreter

This Iraqi Interpreter who calls himself Hammer has a sad, inspiring story.

Hammer: Because of the few bad Iraqis who work as interpreters for the U.S., no one trusts us. But if you give me a gun I will fight harder than the Americans. You can go home. I can’t. I have to live in this country. If the Americans don’t give a Green Card to me and my family, I have to stay in this prison.

At Camp Taji the First Cavalry Division thinks interpreters are the enemy. They decided that interpreters who aren’t American citizens have to take the American flag off their uniforms before they are allowed to enter the dining facility.

I cried that day.
His perspective on the Iraqi people is interesting. He paints the picture of a nation "in jail" that we freed. Like a man on a forced diet let into a candy shop, the country is binging on wanton greed. I can't imagine that this is the first of this attitude or opinion that the military supervisors have heard. In fact, I know this can't be true because of this quote:
Hammer: If you give average Iraqis electricity right now it will be enough. This is the most important thing. Give them power for seven days in a row and there will be no fights.

After the US came and Saddam fell they earned 3 dollars a month. Now they earn between 100 and 700 dollars a month.

Giving them electricity would reduce violence. If you don’t believe me, ask yourself what would happen to this Army base if the power was cut off forever and the soldiers had to spend the rest of their lives in Iraq. Do think think these soldiers would still behave normally

Iraqis are paid to set up IEDs. They do it so they can buy gas for their generator and cool off their house or leave the country. Their hands do this, not their minds.
This ties directly into Petraeus' strategy of "normalcy" that has been shown to work. The majority of Iraqis crave normal, peaceful lives -- and they're being manipulated by the cruel and the power hungry.

If you take the incentive away from following AQ, you remove its base, and its power.