Friday, February 09, 2007

The Nightmares We Share

It was April, the most gorgeous month of the year; earth was covered by fresh green grass and wild flowers. Trees were blooming and apple orchards looked like a carpet of white and pink colors. A pleasantly warm sun was shining and sky was so peacefully blue. It was one of those days that God takes pride in his creation. Amir, Maziar, Hamid and I were walking up the road, 4 middle school students we were 13 years old. Nature was beautiful.

A sharp noise and then far away explosions…angry air defense guns began to fire… And out of sudden the peace was but an illusion. The reality was war; somewhere in east thick columns of smoke blackened the beautiful horizon. Hamid said: “today they got Tehran’s refinery” somewhere a low flying Mig broke the sound barrier. War was reality; war was all we knew.

I still remember that day. How could I forget? In my dreams I am but a teenager walking down a road by an apple orchard with my friends, and there are airplanes, missiles and bombs hanging from sky and we are wondering when they would fall down. I am 32 years old now; my childhood is ages and ages ago. But I still have the same nightmares, waking up happy that bombs did not fall that night.

Nikahang Kowsar an Iranian cartoonist and reporter who lives in Canada wrote yesterday: “last night I dreamt of being in Tehran in a shelter and bombs were falling ....what an ugly nightmare.” He is not alone; many have experienced the same nightmares: many who are in their late 20’s or early 30’s, many who are now in their 40’s, women who are in their 50’s. Millions of Iranians share the same nightmares.

For one it is a charge up the hill and machine guns firing, for one is boot camp and then explosions, for others are missiles, bombs, shelters and those moments when death and destruction were hanging over one’s head. In our dreams we all are children wondering when bombs would fall.

We still open papers to read about bombers waiting to bomb, missiles waiting to be fired, politicians ignoring all calls to diplomacy and humanity dreaming of victories, of using their brute force and their mighty Armada to please their vanity, to prove their righteousness. But bombs would fall on children walking by apple orchards wondering how beautiful life is.

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