Baraa’s Dream


TO GO WITH AFP STORY BY BRYAN PEARSON An Iraqi refugee girl leans on a bag upon her arrival from Syria to an international bus station in Baghdad's al-Likaa square, 28 November 2007. For one of Baghdad's top restaurateurs, returning to Baghdad from exile in Syria means setting up a roadside burger stall; for a farm equipment trader it means hunting for cash to start again. Iraqi refugees streaming back to their homeland are starting to pick up the pieces of their violence-shattered lives. AFP PHOTO/ALI YUSSEF (Photo credit should read ALI YUSSEF/AFP/Getty Images)

Enab Baladi Issue # 101– Sun, Jan. 27, 2014

أحلام براءI was shocked by what I saw once I arrived at my house; three bags put next to the door where Baraa, my child, was standing wearing his jacket and shoes ready to leave. He was waiting for me to come back – to say goodbye!

–      “Hey Baraa, I see you have bagged, where are you going?”

–      “These are my toys and my clothes; I’m gonna visit grandma in Turkey; I wanna live there so I can go to school … There is no shelling in Turkey, right Mom?”

–      “Yes baby, but you can’t go there; the road is all checkpoints; there is a sniper also… won’t you take me with you?”

–      “I’m just a kid; I am 7, I don’t have an ID yet; they’ll let me pass, right?” … “You stay here because I don’t want the officer to arrest you.”

–      “Turkey is so far away… you’ll get lost!”

–      “No, I won’t. I’ll ask until I get there; grandma is waiting for me… I am a grown up now…  don’t worry Mom”

–      “Don’t you need some money?”

–      “Ya, I opened my piggy bank and I got 3 thousands. I’ll rent a house for my grandma and me with 1 thousand, and I’ll buy lots of candies with 1 thousand.”

–      “And the third one?”

–      “I’ll buy fresh bread, plenty of white fresh bread so you can eat, you and all the people here, you won’t be hungry.”

I hugged my child tightly hiding my tears and cursing the siege that crushed Baraa’s dreams…

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