By danderma | February 26, 2011
21 years ago on June 1990 we left Kuwait for our summer vacation in Austria and UK. Planning to return to Kuwait on 2 August 1990.
20 years ago on June 1991 we finally returned back home. It was surreal… returning at last to our home land after being refugees in the UK. Looking back, what i remember most about that trip coming home was my new bronze shoes from BHS and my fathers best friend picking us up from the Airport Allah yer7omah. Then i remember us arriving at our ransacked house and us trying to run up to our rooms while both my parents screamed not to touch anything at all for fear there were weapons or mines left around.
You see the Iraqis had stayed in our home. Their military filth was in our haven. They didn’t just stay and leave, they turned the place upside down, stole whatever they could steal, whatever they didn’t need they had strewn it around the place and in the garden. Why? Beats me. They were savages. It’s a good thing my mothers gold and our electronics were taken out of the house by family members for safe keeping.
We wanted so desperately to touch what’s left of our toys and books. Those were our worldly possessions and we thought they were lost forever, now that we are back for real, we were inches apart, so close yet we cannot touch them. Stories of limpless children who had touched a pen or a harmless object only to discover it’s an explosive mine thing that tore them apart were flying all over the country… stories of how schools and stores and streets and open areas were rigged with mines to kill as many civilians as possible were scary…the pictures of children, men, and women who had actually encountered those mines and had lost limps for ever filled our imagination with fear. Imagine arriving at your home but being afraid to touch anything for fear of your life.
It makes you wonder how sick was the person who invented a toy or a pen that was actually a mine in camouflage is. Allah yenteqem minkom insha2 Allah.
We didn’t sleep at our home that night. We stayed in our grandmother’s house for a few days while the house was put back in order.
and When it was time to go back to school, i remember spending the night before going back thrashing in bed, scared to my core of going back to school when there could be mines every where. I knew they had combed every where for mines but then they never know do they? Maybe they had left something here or there? My parents had again asked me not to go walk in the backyard or touch any objects lying around however innocent they seemed.
My fear of the mines never went away. 20 years on and i am still afraid of mines. Afraid to my core. I am afraid to walk or drive in the dessert or over a sandy area for who knows? Maybe i am the first to drive there for 20 years and i will encounter a mine? Stories of mines found years later from the Invasion’s leftover artilary make me shiver and sends the fear spasms through my body again. It proves that my theory is right. There are still mines around.
I was afraid. I am still afraid. and I will always be afraid of the Iraqi mines… until the day i die.
7asbya Allah wa ne3ma el wakeel. We will never forget. EVER.