September 14, 2007
It is Friday, the second day of Ramadan. The last week and a half since my return to Amman has been full of visits, some more “formal” as with the UNHCR or colleagues from the states, but for the most part with Iraqi friends and families. Too many stories to recount. Too many emotions still churning within me. There has been a lot of movement in the four and a half months since I was here.
Several families have moved to other areas of the city, and I need to track them down. One 18 year old lad decided to return to his family in Baghdad. It seems he could no longer bear to be alone, and decided to go back into the fiery furnace. I had hoped we could find a way to get him to the states on a student visa, to live with a loving family and finish high school; something concrete to give his family in Baghdad hope. A father who lived down the street was forced to move to Syria with three of their young sons in order to be reunited with his wife and their youngest son. The mother and two year old child had gone to Baghdad earlier this year as her father suffered a heart attack. When they tried to return to Amman, they were refused entrance. I often wonder how they are faring in Syria? For some time now the border between Jordan and Iraq (by air and land) has only been open to Iraqis with residency or for important business people or officials. Since Sept 10th, we hear that Syria is requiring visas from Iraqis to enter.