Sep 4, 2008

Slowly, Iraqi Refugees and their Story Receive Attention

A few weeks ago, Aaron Brown, in his new reincarnation on PBS, had an excellent documentary on the plight of the Iraqi refugees in Jordan and Syria. In my own small way, I have been making joint presentations with a colleague at small community meetings talking about our visit for almost two weeks in May, to Jordan and Syria. Some traction, I thought, is being gained.

Now, the latest issue of The Progressive (volume 72, no.9) has arrived, and the cover story is about the refugees. As we all know, the Progressive, Democracy Now!, or Wide Angle on PBS are hardly a presence in the national media. But who knows what further publicity the story will receive. We must keep paying attention to these refugees, who, I can tell you, dress like you and me, have sons and daughters like you and me, have no work, have aspirations for safety and success and a peaceful home in a country where they can make a living and raise their children in peace.

Many thanks to The Progressive and Elizabeth DiNovella for giving attention to this terrible situation, which would be similar to having 60 MILLION Americans (think Texas and California) fleeing to Canada, Mexico, and the Caribbean or internally migrating to other states. The United States has done little to alleviate the suffering and deprivation of the majority of these refugees in Jordan and Syria, nor has the Iraqi government, with all of its surplus, assisted its citizens.

Let us hope that the people of America will understand the situation and speak out for correction and reparations.

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