I have an idea. Let's pretend that the conflict in Iraq is not really a sectarian war. Let's pretend that only Americans murder Iraqis. Right. Let's pretend that there were no problems before 2003. Yes, let's pretend that Saddamists had nothing to do with the current situation in Iraq. Let's pretend that Saddamists and their "mujahideen" did not intentionally blow up markets and police stations in order to PROVE that life was better for Iraqis before 2003. If only those damn Americans would leave, the "resistance" would stop blowing up markets. Everything would be hunky dory! Just like before 2003.
Many Sunni Arabs miss the good old days. So do the Iraqi Shia, I am told, probably because they're sick of being blown up. Saddam never blew up markets before 2003. Look what's happening now! This is "democracy" brought to you by the Americans. Fvcking Americans! The Iraqi Shia want to return to days when there were no tensions between the sects, when all was well in our beloved Iraq.
Sectarian Toll Includes Scars to Iraq Psyche
BAGHDAD, Sept. 16  — Violence swept over the Muhammad family in December, taking the father, the family’s house and all of its belongings in one chilly morning. But after the Muhammads fled, it subsided and life re-emerged — ordinary and quiet — in its wake.
Now they no longer have to hide their Shiite last name. The eldest daughter does not have to put on an Islamic head scarf. Grocery shopping is not a death-defying act.
Although the painful act of leaving is behind them, their minds keep returning to the past, trying to process a violation that was as brutal as it was personal: young men from the neighborhood shot the children’s father as they watched. Later, the men took the house.
“I lost everything in one moment,” said Rossel, the eldest daughter. “I don’t know who I am now. I’m somebody different.”
They are educated people, and they say they do not want revenge. But typical of those who are left from Iraq’s reasonable middle, the Muhammads have been hardened toward others by violence, and they have been forced to feel their sectarian identity, a mental closing that allows war made by militants to spread.
“In the past the country lived all together, but now, no,” Rossel said. “I don’t trust anyone.”
"Part of the sensitivity comes from trauma inflicted by Saddam Hussein’s government: years ago, Hashem’s grandparents were forced out of their homes by local Baathists and died in the desert. "