We had a nice change of pace during the past three days of Eid here in Baghdad, even though there's not much to do outside the house. It was mostly a time to gather up with family over a nice quzi dinner, and to see people we haven't been able to see during Ramadan because of the short days and the early self-imposed curfews. And of course to catch up on old news.
On the second day of Eid, we had my husband's maternal family gather at our house for a potluck Eid lunch/dinner. We usually hold this dinner at Aunt W's house at the outskirts of Adhamiya, but because of the security situation there, we decided to have it at our house.
Aunt W was telling us about how a car bomb that exploded right in front of their house shattered all the windows in her house about ten days ago, and destroyed her doors. Her 19 year old son was taking pictures of the damage done with his cell phone, and then decided to go up to their roof to take a picture of the car skeleton. Iraqi army officers saw him and stormed the house, to arrest him. They were afraid that he was trying to get their location on film for a possible attack against them (he had no such plans in mind). They tried to get him to admit right then and there that he was a part of the insurgency.
His poor mother went crazy. She was telling me how she screamed at the officer and told him, "I won't let you take him. You'll kill him. Do you have a mother? What would she do if you were taken from her?" He told her, "I promise I'll bring him back to you." She pleaded and pleaded, but the officer had to take him in.
Thankfully, an hour or so later, the kid was let out, without any harm done. The officers actually apologized to him and his mother, told her they made sure to bring him back safely because they felt sorry for her.
Another aunt was telling us that her house in Amiriya was searched at 1 am the night before Eid by American soldiers looking for certain names in the area. Her story will follow in a coming post- the Sunni aunt married to a Shiite husband, living in now Sunni-only Amiriya.