Last Saturday

You would think that I would be a more efficient blogger since my job here is centered around PLC’s blog. I’m sorry I haven’t posted about what I’ve been up to these past weeks. So I’ll just write a lot today!

Last Saturday (the 4th) we all went to Amna Suraka, or in English “Red Security.”Amna Suraka was built to house the Kurds during Saddam’s regime, it operated from 1979 until 1991 (at which point the Kurdish Peshmerga (armed Kurdish fighters) attacked and won control of the prison from Saddam’s party). 
The first room you walk through is covered in broken glass pieces- a piece for each 182,000 victims under Saddam (an conservative estimate). The room’s ceiling is covered in 5,400 small light-bulbs– each representing a village destroyed by Saddam Hussein. On Saturday I was sure this place was the most evil place I could ever have visited.
After the prison we walked to a park (Parki Azadi or Freedom Park). It use to be where public executions took place. Now it’s where families go to picnic, children come to play, and an amusement park is running (and taking all of Iraq’s electricity I think). Isn’t that beautiful that instead of allowing Saddam Hussein to ruin this land, they turned it into a place where life can be happy and celebrated?

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