In Memoriam

Remembering innocent Iraqis lost in the war

| September / October 2003

Discussion of the Iraq War on all sides downplayed the violence to everyday people. Let us now mourn Iraqi civilian casualties, estimated (conservatively) to be 6,058 to 7,711 dead (as of mid-July). Here are stories of some who died.

March 26: Faris El Baur made cushions for car seats, working in his shop in Al Shaab market in north Baghdad. Because schools were closed for the war, his 11-year-old son Saif was helping him. When two rockets struck the market, father and son were crushed and burned. More than 20 other people died, including a mother and three small children, incinerated in their flipped-over car, and a young man named Tajir, decapitated in a water-heater shop.

March 29: Failing to realize that their village was inside a 'kill box,' a free-fire zone designated by the U.S. military, cousins 12-year-old Ibrahim and 17-year-old Jala walked to their neighbor's house for lunch. A U.S. pilot bombed and killed them.

March 30: With two friends, 14-year-old Arkan Daif was digging a trench in front of his Baghdad house to protect his family from bombing. A bomb tore off the back of his head. He was a boy 'like a flower,' his father said.

April 1: Razek al-Khataj was driving north with 15 members of his family to escape fierce fighting in Nasiriyah, south of Baghdad. A rocket from an Apache helicopter blew their truck apart. Razek lost his wife, six children, his father and mother, his three brothers, and their wives.

April 2: Eight-year-old Aisha Ahmed was playing in the garden when a missile struck her family's farm in Radwaniyeh, near Baghdad airport. Her 4-year-old brother died. Her mother, father, older brother, and sisters were critically injured. Aisha lost an eye; her face and body were peppered with shrapnel. She kept asking, 'Mommy! Where is my mommy?'