By Hanif Garmabi
I remember In 2009, the Iraqi government attacked Camp Ashraf for the first time, killing 11 residents and abducting 36 others. The hostages were kept in the Iraqi government’s prisons for 72 days while they were on hunger strike. We were all concerned about their fate and didn’t know what would become of them.
At last on the 72nd day, when the campaign for their freedom came to fruition, it was my mother who gave me the news of the hostages’ release. I still remember how happy she was.
Four years later, the same Iraqi forces attacked Camp Ashraf for the third time. This time my father was murdered and my mother was abducted.
And now she’s been hostage in the hands of the same Iraqi forces for 72 days. I keep on asking myself, “Who will give me the news of her freedom?”
Who will fill my heart with joy this time? Who will break the bars of her prison and bring her back to safety? Who will grant me my only wish?
Every day, I wake up from my restless sleep, hoping that today, I’ll be hearing of her freedom. And every night I go to sleep, knowing that I have to try harder on the morrow, reminding myself that every moment that passes, she is enduring more torture at the hand of Maliki’s forces.
Every day, I call on President Obama, reminding him that he had promised to protect my mother, that he is responsible for her safety and her freedom. I don’t even know whether he’ll read these lines or not.
Am I demanding too much of him? Maliki’s forces murdered my father because of his government’s silence and inaction. Will my mother share the same fate?
Will President Obama finally come to his senses and decide to prevent another tragedy before it takes place? Will he listen to the demands of hundreds of Camp Liberty residents and Iranians across the world who have gone on hunger strike in protest to his idleness, calling on him to put pressure on the Iraqi government to free the seven hostages?
Will he give me the news of my mother’s freedom?
- Hostage’s son will share his story live on Twitter (freethe7.wordpress.com)
- Fact or fiction? (freethe7.wordpress.com)