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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Asia (02/26/09)

TITLE: The Secret of My Country
By Allison Egley


I like my portion of the country. It is peaceful here, though you'd never know it unless you lived here with me. You see, I live in Iraq. I know what the news sources in the United States say, and I know what many Americans want. It scares me.

You see, what you may see on the news isn't the real Iraq. Oh, I'm not saying that the stories aren't true. But most of Iraq is not as violent. Most Iraqis don't mind the U.S. Troops. In fact, most of us like them.

They promote peace. Things are good here. But now... Now I am afraid. I have heard of the plans. They want to withdraw the troops. I wish they'd listen to the people like me. Or even to the troops. We know that while things are improving in Iraq, any change could upset the precious balance.

I am afraid the new government will not yet be strong enough once the U.S. troops leave. I am afraid that Iraq will go backwards rather than forwards, and we will be worse off than before.

I wish that the rumor that many believe was true. I wish that Iraq had no connection to the terrorist attacks that fateful September morning. And, well, I suppose I don't know that there was a connection, but I fear it is true. There are terrorists in Iraq. That much I know. Whether they are connected to Al-Qaeda, I don't know. They use a different name, but that doesn't mean much. They are training new recruits.

You may be wondering why you've never heard this, and why I can say it's peaceful if there are terrorists. You may be wondering why I can call it peaceful when in other parts of my country there is a war going on. You may be wondering why I want the troops to stay. You see, as long as the troops are here, the terrorists are afraid to act. They like us to think they are strong and mighty. But they are cowards.

I fear that the moment the troops leave, the terrorists will unleash the fury pent up for many years. I fear what the world will look like after this.

How do I know this, you ask? You see, I am one that the terrorist are training. I have been given my marching orders, to be executed once the troops leave and an unstable government is all that's left to keep the order. I don't want to die on their time. I want to die on His time. Please. Save me.


Author's Notes:
This is a fictional account, and the views in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of the author.

The opinions expressed by authors may not necessarily reflect the opinion of FaithWriters.com.
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This article has been read 737 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Sheri Gordon03/08/09
I really like this piece--your last paragraph is very compelling.

In light of your author's note, I personally think you did an excellent job representing the feelings of many people in that country. Nice job.
Connie Dixon03/08/09
This was really an interesting perspective, and I wonder how much truth there could be to it. Creative idea!
Carol Slider 03/08/09
You make an excellent point, and I'm sure you do express the opinion of many Iraqis. Surprising point of view, very well done.
Catrina Bradley 03/08/09
I wish you could hear me applauding. I've heard this same viewpoint so many times, but never from the media..never "publicly." The twist at the end was awesome. I do wonder who being referred to in "I want to die on His time." A Muslim terrorist would (I think) be speaking of Allah, but it sounds more like a Christian speaking of the One True God.
Joanne Sher 03/09/09
Absolutely fascinating perspective. Gives us much to ponder - and that twist at the end is something else!
Ruth Ann Moore03/09/09
A very haunting story. I liked your point of view.
Lyn Churchyard03/09/09
Well written and a very interesting POV. I think you, or rather your MC is right. Not all Iraqis are terrorists. I know some Iraqi Muslims, and they are gentle, loving family men and women. Good job on this entry, Alison.
Carolyn Crook03/09/09
I also liked the twist in the ending. Never saw it coming.

Having never written before I came to FW (beginner) I am learning amazing techniques, especially from the Advanced and Masters.

Thank you for the example of great writing skill, and a new dimension concerning the Iraqis to think about.
Karlene Jacobsen03/10/09
I was wondering what the secret was, then you revealed it. Oh my, it gave me the chills. I imagine there are probably young people trained to "sacrifice" themselves in the name of their god, who question in their heart. I imagine they cry out silently for help. I imagine there is some truth to this we haven't seen or heard yet.
Jan Ackerson 03/10/09
Very thought-provoking, and an authentic voice.

I think the disclaimer at the end sort of pokes a hole in the balloon. Let your piece stand on its merits!

Thanks for writing this--it gave me a lot to mull over.