Greetings in the name of Allah!
In case you don't remember who I am, I am Wisam Ali al-Mahoodi. I am 11 years old. I live in Iraq with my family (my father, my two mothers, my grandparents, and 19 brothers and sisters; I used to have two more brothers, but they died in 2009 due to a bomb that went off at the side of the road. They were 18 and two. I still mis them both very much).
I used to go to school, but I no longer do. Too many dangers; it is not safe to be outside for long. You never know who might be lurking outside; you cannot trust anybody anymore these days. We've been at war for the past eight years now, and it doesn't look like it will be ending anytime soon. It is all a big, giant, political mess.
I was just born when the war began, so I really don't remember anything.
The Americans and Allied forces want to help us get our freedom; meanwhile, the insurgency keeps threatening to destroy it (and us) in the process. There are no easy answers; too many innocents have been killed right along with the enemy and the Allied forces.
I pray to Allah every night, asking him to keep us safe from harm. We've already lost two family members: we cannot lose any more!
I am tired of staying indoors all the time. I am bored, very bored. I want to visit my friends, but alas, it is no longer safe. I could easily get killed (or badly wounded) myself. Instead, I try to entertain myself by reading or writing poems or stories (mainly about my wartime experiences or life here in Iraq). This is only the second time I have written in my personal journal; too scared to divulge too much in the way of personal information. You never know who might be reading this; this is why I have to be so careful.
If this gets into the wrong hands, it could be detrimental for me and my life. This is why I do it in secret or don't write in here as often as I should. I hate having to do this, but for my chance of surviving this war, it is the only way.
My family is very good to me. We have always been extremely close. I even get along with my Other-Mother, the one named Omari. My real-Mother's name is Fatima. She was the one who birthed me and most of my brothers and sisters; the younger children belong to Omari. Already Mother ... my Real-Mother ... knows sadness: she lost my brother Omar over a year and a half ago. If he had lived, he would have been thirteen in November. Now he will always be 12, forever and ever. Even if I grow up, Omar will always be a child because that was when he died.
On Fridays, we have our prayer time. We pray five times a day, as any good, dutiful Muslim family should. We pray for the safety of our land, our people, and the soldiers fighting enemy troops. We even pray for the good Americans or Allied forces who are trying so hard to help us.
Well, I have to go. I hear more artillery fire in the distance; also think I hear planes. Don't know if it is enemy or not, so I'd best hide and make myself scarce. Just pray for me and pray for the Iraqi people; I would be happy to see this horrid war end!!
~To be continued.~