Talking About Iraq
One: From the Washington Post, Kayt Sukel writes about her experience delivering a premature baby in a German hospital and being unable to communicate effectively with the staff about her son's condition, and about the nurse who stepped forward to help her. Sukel's husband has served in Iraq and probably will again; the nurse is Iraqi. The article is a good read; I encourage you to check out the whole thing.
One day, after a visit from my husband in uniform, Sylvia came in to check on my son.
"Your husband," she asked as she tested the baby's reflexes, "will he go to Iraq?"
It's a common enough question these days, but my husband's job and the war were among the few things that Sylvia and I had not talked about. I replied that he had just returned from deployment in Baghdad and probably would go back eventually.
"Ah," she said. "I am Iraqi, you know."
I did not know. Though Sylvia's dark hair and eyes didn't match the blond, blue-eyed stereotype of old, I had been in Germany long enough to see that Germans come in all shades and ethnicities. That she was of another nationality simply hadn't occurred to me.
As I listened to Sylvia speak of her homeland, I desperately wanted to ask her view of the war. Did she find America's actions in Iraq justified? Or did she condemn the fight, vilifying the policies executed by soldiers like my husband? I wanted to inquire, to start a dialogue, yet once again I could not find the words.
Two: From Jesus' General, a brief photo essay.