Saturday, October 14, 2006

Update on Kidnapped Brothers

As I mentioned in my previous post, since arriving in Baghdad after a three and a half month hiatus, I've noticed that things have changed for the worse in so many way. Everyday you hear sooo many stories of people murdered and kidnapped and forced out of their homes, and you see signs of a dying city.
One of those sad stories is that of our neighbors who I reported were kidnapped two weeks ago from the computer store they work in in the Sina'a district. I visited the family when I got here last week to give them some support. It turns out, things are much worse than I knew. Not only were their two sons kidnapped, but their daughter's husband was taken along with the two brothers. Their 27 year old daughter is staying with her parents now, along with her 14 month old baby boy, also awaiting news of her husband's fate.
Sadly, the family has not yet heard ANYTHING from the kidnappers. That usually means the worst in the kidnapping game. It's been two weeks, with no one asking for a ransom or a demand to be met. Allah yustur. During the family visit, I was shaken by how the boys' parents were almost talking of them as if they expected the worst. The mother was quite patient, and kind, asking about how my daughter and I were doing, even managing a smile here and there. But she mentioned how she believed in God, but such an end for her sons, who she bore and gave birth to, and raised and watched marry, was so difficult. I saw the father's usually cheerful face, still attempting that cheerinees, but with a horrific look of one who has seen death, and who has been searching for his sons' bodies. In fact, he has been making his rounds in the past days to hospitals and medical examiners' offices, looking for his sons bodies. How heavy and difficult, to say the least. I really did see the look of horror on his face, more so than his wife; a heavy look, so strange on his usually kind face. One of the pregnant daughters in law was there as well, with her tear streaked face, and puffy eyes. The other daughter in law could not stand living with her husband's memories all around her, and is staying at her parents' house.
Four of the men who were taken were let go, with no 'strings attached' except that they keep their mouthes shut about all that had happened to them, or fear for their life. They were not involved in the store's running, as the boys' mother told me; one a janitor, the other a customer, etc. And they are hiding out in their homes, refusing to speak to anyone, refusing to give details of what they went through, scared to help out the poor families awaiting news of their loved ones.
This is how my street now looks: one house with a young father murdered about two months ago, the next house with three kidnapped sons, the next house with a father who has to watch his every move because of his political position, and the fourth house with a son in law who was kidnapped and let go for a ransom payment of $30,000.
Sadly, looking more and more like a typical neighborhood in Baghdad.

7 comments:

tima #2 said...

la hawla wala quwwata illah billah.. we'll be praying for them at tahajud today inshaa Allah. May Allah protect them, and give their families strength and patience.

Shafi said...

SuhnanAllah, this post really hit me hard, it puts faces on the daily news from Iraq that has become just background noise now in our privileged existence while it must feel like the sky is falling down on your neighborhood. What kind of iman must this mother have to render a smile, even if it is weak, to a guest while not knowing the fate of the very child she adored in her youth? The waiting must be agonizing, even when you know the answer deep down. The thought of the fear these men must have felt; blindfolded, hustled into waiting trucks with hearts racing brings a terrible knot in my throat. What must it feel like for a father to awaken each morning hoping that this would be the day he finds his son’s corpse? Not in the wildest dreams of my youth did I think I would grow up in a world this heartbreaking for our ummah. I wonder how these parents find any peace in the night, sometimes even a pillow can feel as if it is made out of concrete, but this is what makes us believers, and theirs will be a victory in the hereafter insha’Allah, may ALLAH make it easy for them. I can only imagine you probably feel like the walls around you are crumbling, but stay strong, a good heart recently reminded me that if we put all our trust in ALLAH, as we should,it would suffice. May ALLAH protect you and your family insha’Allah. Give my Salam to all and a kiss to “Maya” (and let her know she isn’t the only one that bobs her head like a Paki when happy. :)

white rose said...

salam fatima,
i guess i should first say hamdollilah 3ala alsalama & Allah ye7fathkum!
I hope Allah (SWT)gives their families patience & the courage to get past their tragedies..

this is a bit personal so plz forgive me, do you know a girl named hiba abdulrahim? she came to iraq with her hub i think in 2004..
if not, never mind no biggie :)

Fatima said...

Shafi,
JazakaAllahu khayran for your words, they moved me. Keep the family in your duaa.
White Rose, ummm, yes, why? you can email me at thoughtsfrombaghdad@gmail.com

Halla said...

Fatima, I am glad you and your family is safe! Those poor people, I do not know what to say and how to express it......its just so tragic! If only the Bush administration can read your blog and see what is happening to the people in Iraq, maybe then, they will wake up!!!!

programmer craig said...

If only the Bush administration can read your blog and see what is happening to the people in Iraq, maybe then, they will wake up!!!!

What would you suggest they do, Halla? To make the situation better, I mean.

Anonymous said...

do you know Riverbend? She hasn't posted for more than 2 months, and many of us are worried about her.

could you possibly email me if you have any news. vbkathy@yahoo.com