Edward I. Baba
2008. A new year often means new beginnings. Keeping that in mind, we must refresh and cleanse ourselves of our past mistakes and misfortunes and start with a fresh slate. With that said, we must begin to pinpoint our problems in order to better understand the necessary steps we must take to obtain a solution.
With the continuous disruption of our political needs, I have witnessed the â€œleadersâ€ of our religious groups assist in the crumbling of our successes bringing us one giant step back instead of one step closer to our solution.
As a contractor for the US Government stationed in Iraq, I have seen firsthand the atrocities and the hardships faced amongst our community in Iraq as a whole (housing, churches, etc.). I have seen the rape, the oppression, the persecution, and the constant states of fear. I have seen the tattered homes, the emaciated bodies, the orphan children suffering, and the women weeping with the uncertainty of life for the husbands, their sons, their daughters, their mothers and their fathers.
I am utterly disgusted. Disgusted at how some of these religious leaders observe with tinted eyes, blinded by the fortunes obtained through the division of our nation.
On June 8th, 2007, one of the most prominent religious figures, Pope Benedict XVI, held a meeting with the President of the United States, George W. Bush. During this meeting, the two renowned leaders discussed the current situation of Iraq as well as our humble Assyrian minority in Iraq in regards to the Nineveh Plains region. The pope asserted that the scattered Assyrian communities in Iraq are content with their situation and do not wish to be relocated. Content? Has he not seen or heard of the bloodshed and the persecution of the Assyrian Christians in Iraq? Has he not seen or heard of the destruction of the churches? With all due respect to the pope, but he is not a representative of our people in Iraq and therefore, cannot speak for them. Furthermore, I believe that the pope has already caused us enough brutality with his offenses towards the Muslim community when speaking of the prophet Mohammad. The consequences of his slandering words hit us the hardest with the rapid bombings of our churches in Iraq following his speech. Many of our people suffered as scapegoats for the pope.
(For further information, go to: http://www.aina.org/news/20070622144501.htm)
Following this, a closer religious figure to our nation, Mar Delly of the Chaldean church in Baghdad, held a meeting on December 18, 2007 in Baghdad to discuss, amongst other things, the Nineveh Plains with Christian clergymen. A few hours later, a conclusion arrived that the administrative region is not crucial for the Assyrian people in Iraq.
So, I must ask: Did we lose our religious institutions or did our religious institutions lose us? For centuries we have entrusted our churches with power over our nation, yet all we seem to see is the asphyxiating of the truth and the hope that we had within us for our rights and our freedoms throughout the globe.
The Simplest Solution:
A famous band, Rage Against the Machine, sang, â€œWe need a movement with a quickness, you are the witness of change and to counteract, we gotta take the power back!…
â€¦With lecture I puncture the structure of lies installed in our minds and attempting to hold us back, we’ve got to take it back. Holes in our spirit causin’ tears and fears. One-sided stories for years and years and years. I’m inferior? Who’s inferior? Yeah, we need to check the interior of the system that cares about only one culture. And that is why we gotta take the power back.â€
We put these figures where they are now and we have to keep them in check. We employ them, and thus, they work for us. We are their employers, not their employees. Hence, we must not allow them to dictate our life, but restrict them on their religious teachings, for that is what they are employed to do.
George Carlin once said, â€œI’m completely in favor of the separation of Church and State. My idea is that these two institutions screw us up enough on their own, so both of them together is certain death.â€