Iraq: what lies ahead? As many Iraqi people struggle for survival, world leaders shape plans for their future. (News Special).Since March 19, when U.S.-led forces began a war against Saddam Hussein's regime, Iraqi civilians have had to contend with bombings and bloodshed blood·shed
The shedding of blood, especially the injury or killing of people.
Noun 1. . For many, the war is simply more misery that the world has rained down on their country. But many others have held out hope that the presence of coalition forces (U.S. and British troops and their allies) will mean freedom from a repressive government.
One New York New York, state, United States
New York, Middle Atlantic state of the United States. It is bordered by Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and the Atlantic Ocean (E), New Jersey and Pennsylvania (S), Lakes Erie and Ontario and the Canadian province of Times reporter, traveling with the 101st U.S. Army Airborne Division, wrote of an encounter outside Baghdad with an Iraqi child.
The boy, about 6 or 7, approached the reporter and said the two words that were uttered over and over: 'America. Good.' Then he kissed the reporter on the cheek, shook his hand and pointed to the sky, pleading for water."
A Humanitarian Crisis A humanitarian crisis (or "humanitarian disaster") is an event or series of events which represents a critical threat to the health, safety, security or wellbeing of a community or other large group of people, usually over a wide area.
For more than a week, the boy's town, Najaf, had been without water. Fierce battles there and elsewhere kept the United Nations (UN), Red Cross, and other relief organizations from distributing aid.
"What concerns us most," said a Red Cross official, "are the threats to [the] safety and health of civilians. The two things are closely linked."
Iraqis have already suffered for years because of a UN trade embargo. Meant to punish Hussein's regime, the embargo has reduced the amount of food and medicine available to the Iraqi people.
Prisoners of War prisoners of war, in international law, persons captured by a belligerent while fighting in the military. International law includes rules on the treatment of prisoners of war but extends protection only to combatants.
While working to distribute essential supplies to Iraqi civilians, the Red Cross has also visited Iraqi prisoners of war (POWs) held by coalition forces. However, despite negotiations with Iraqi authorities, the Red Cross has had trouble gaining access to coalition soldiers captured by Iraq.
The 1949 Geneva Convention Geneva Convention Declaration of Geneva Global village A standard established in 1864 regarding the conduct of the military towards medical personnel, and obligations of medical personnel during acts of war. authorizes the Red Cross to visit POWs and monitor their treatment. According to according to
1. As stated or indicated by; on the authority of: according to historians.
2. In keeping with: according to instructions.
3. the international agreement, POWs are to be treated humanely during their captivity and are to be released to their homelands once a war ends.
Many Americans were angered when Iraqi television broadcast footage of U.S. POWs in distress. The U.S. soldiers, who were from an Army maintenance unit, were killed or captured after an Iraqi ambush. U.S. special forces later staged a dramatic rescue of one of the captured soldiers, 1 9-year-old Jessica Lynch Jessica Dawn Lynch (born April 26, 1983 in Palestine, West Virginia) is a former Quartermaster Corps Private First Class (PFC) in the United States Army. Lynch became famous after her widely publicized recovery by U.S. special operations forces. of Palestine, West Virginia Palestine is an unincorporated community in Wirt County, West Virginia, in the United States. It is located along the Little Kanawha River, at , at an elevation of 682 feet (208 m). Its ZIP code is 26160. . Although wounded, Lynch is expected to recover completely.
A War on Islam?
The war continues to draw condemnation from Europe, Asia, and several Arab nations. Protesters have staged angry demonstrations in Jordan, Egypt, Saudi Arabia Saudi Arabia (sä`dē ərā`bēə, sou`–, sô–), officially Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, kingdom (2005 est. pop. , Syria, Bahrain, and other countries. Although many Arabs distrust Saddam Hussein Saddam Hussein
(born April 28, 1937, Tikrit, Iraq—died Dec. 30, 2006, Baghdad) President of Iraq (1979–2003). He joined the Ba'th Party in 1957. Following participation in a failed attempt to assassinate Iraqi Pres. , they view the war as a battle against Islam.
But, says U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld: "Coalition forces have taken extraordinary measures to protect innocent civilians in this war, [while] Saddam Hussein has sent death squads to massacre innocent Iraqi Muslims. Indeed, Saddam Hussein has killed more Muslim people than perhaps any living person on the face of the earth."
One Iraqi Muslim now living in the U.S. says that the U.S. had no choice but to attack Hussein's regime. "No one likes wars," she said. "But this is the only option."
The Road Ahead
Bringing democracy to postwar Iraq will be difficult. The Iraqis are divided into several groups that do nor get along (see sidebar).
World leaders For a list of heads of state, see .
World leaders is a MMORPG. The game involves creating a state, joining an alliance and going into war. It is mostly played by players from Israel, China, USA, Britain, Brazil and Saudi-Arabia. must also agree on a way to share the responsibilities of rebuilding the war-torn nation. Experts say that repairing roads, hospitals, schools, oil wells, airports, roads, and other infrastructure will cost more than $100 billion.
France, Russia, and even Britain, the U.S.'s staunchest ally, believe that the UN should play a central role in the rebuilding process. But President George W. Bush and members of his administration disagree.
"Having given life and blood to liberate Iraq," said National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice, "the coalition intends to have a leading role" in rebuilding.
As for the Iraqi people, they will at last have a say in how their government is run.
"The problem was with Saddam Hussein, not with the Iraqi people," said one Shiite leader who returned from exile when the war began. "We want real democracy."
RELATED ARTICLE: Who Are the Iraqis?
In order to establish a democratic government many group of people in Iran must work together (see map) The Iargest groups are
SUNNIS: Mainstream Muslims many of them loyal to Saddam Hussein Sunnis make up most of the Iraqi government and workforce.
SHIITES: The largest non-Sunni group of Muslims in Iraq, They live primarily in the south. The Sunni leadership has suppressed the Shiites economically and politically because of Shiite opposition to Hussein
KURDS: Kurds are a non-Arab ethic group of Sunni Muslims Noun 1. Sunni Muslim - a member of the branch of Islam that accepts the first four caliphs as rightful successors to Muhammad
Sunni Islam, Sunni - one of the two main branches of orthodox Islam who live in an independent region in northern Iraq Hussein's regime has killed more than 200,000 Kurds. Some Kurdist groups have worked with coalition forces to dismantle local terrorist networks and guerrila bands loyal to the Iraq leader.
The Home Front
With U.S. troops at war in Iraq, watching news reports can be especially tense for military families.
"Whenever the news is on, and they say another soldier was killed, I cross my fingers and pray that it wasn't my brother," says Elizabeth Gruchy, 12.
An eighth-grader in Quincy, Massachusetts Quincy is a city in Norfolk County, Massachusetts. It bears the nicknames "The City of Presidents," "City of Legends," "Birthplace of the American Dream." A major part of Metropolitan Boston, Quincy is a member of Boston's Inner Core Committee for the Metropolitan , Elizabeth is Elizabeth I, queen of England
Elizabeth I, 1533–1603, queen of England (1558–1603). Early Life
The daughter of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, she was declared illegitimate just before the execution of her mother in 1536, but in waiting for the safe return of her brother Tommy, a lance corporal lance corporal
1. Abbr. LCpl A noncommissioned rank in the U.S. Marine Corps that is above private first class and below corporal.
2. One who holds this rank. in the Marines. Life at home has changed now that Tommy is not around.
"My house is very quiet," Elizabeth says. "He always used to tell jokes and make everyone laugh."
While she waits for Tommy to return, Elizabeth tries to think about happy memories. Each winter, for example, the two would snowboard in their backyard.
What would Elizabeth say to Tommy if she could talk to him now?
"I would tell him that when he is fighting [he should] not give up, and to know that he will be coming home soon.
To learn more about Elizabeth and other teens whose relatives are stationed in the Gulf region, go to: www.scholastic.com/militarykids