Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Wonderful Sunshine

Whether it rises on a lake in North Bay, Canada or
on the Tigris River in beautiful Mosul, the sun is ours to stay,
bloody wars or not.
Her name is Sunshine, she was born on a glorious January 29 in 1992, in Iraq.

Considered to be the Best Young Iraqi Blogger at age 14, Sunshine from Mosul has experienced a few cloudy days recently with her mother in need of an operation, her Great Grandmother passing away during surgery, and her friend losing several family members in a terrorist/insurgent attack. However, despite the recent difficulties, toils and troubles, of being a young woman growing up in a rebuilding Iraq, Sunshine, like the sun, rises warm and sunny every morning, each day a new learning experience for this bright studious girl, a cornerstone of Iraq's future potential.

Sunshine From Mosul, Days of My Life - Best Young Iraqi Blogger

MG : Hello Sunshine, how are you?

Sunshine: Hello sir, I am fine thanks.

- Can you tell us what a typical or average day for Sunshine is like?

Sunshine: Well, I wake up early in the morning, I go to school at 7:30, & come back at 1:30, I take my lunch & study till bed time …. In the holidays or weekends I sometimes wake up early too if we have electricity, I work on computer (& of course if the voltage is high enough), & I like reading, I am not too interested in watching TV, actually I don't have enough time, but I like Oprah show, Dr. Phil, & the reports.. I love reports...

- Can you describe some of the changes that have occurred for your family and you since the War began?

Sunshine: Since the war we spend most of the time at home, no more fun, no more picnics, no birthdays with guests, my parents discusses policy in most of the day, and watch news many many times during the day...

- What is the most important thing to you in life and why?

Sunshine: I believe that the most important thing in any ones life is education, Iraq needs re-building, & I want to share in rebuilding my country...

MG: Sunshine, what does Love mean to you?

Sunshine: Well, I don't know, I am still too young, but I think if you love someone you should trust, respect, & to be honest with your lover... Love is important in humanity to make life peaceful … Life without love makes people the same as dolls...

MG: You mentioned during the recent Iraqi Election that you would have voted for Allawi, List No. 731. Can you tell us what you liked about Allawi? And were you happy with the election results?

Sunshine: Yes I would have voted for Allawi, because he is educated, courageous man, as well as the other members with him & that what we need. I am not happy with the results I am very upset...

- Sunshine, are you worried that Iraq is heading down a more Fundamental Islamic path? Five years from today, will you have to wear a Abbaya when you venture outside?

Sunshine: Well the word " worried" don't describe what I am feeling now, but "terrified" does… but I assure you that no one in this world can makes me wear al-Abbaya...

-Does the World Media (Television, Radio, and Newspapers) present an accurate view of what's happening in Iraq?

Sunshine: NO, they don't. I hear many explosions everyday, many people die, sometimes people we know, but the media don't show that, and don't give a related view... Few days ago, a suicid bomber exploded himself in our neighborhood, all the windows were broken and no one mentioned that at all. In my mid-year exam there was a mine near my school, no one talked about that too, so many things happen every day and no one talk about them... No one show the real people's condition, not even in the Iraqi media, I don't know why?! When they make a questionnaire, for example, they ask poor, uneducated people such as an old woman with Abbaya or a cadger... They don't ask a doctor, professor, engineer, they don't do that in universities or in hospitals... I can barely recognize my country, while listening to the news or see reports about Iraq...

- Do you feel that the present conditions in Iraq and Mosul restrict your ability to learn?

Sunshine: Yes sir, absolutely. Sometimes I can't reach school and I miss classes, sometimes I can't concentrate, I keep thinking about tomorrow; my safety, orI think about my parents' safety or about sad stories I heard...

- Iraqi Schools and Teacher Qualifications: You are critical of the Iraqi schools and the educators. Can you discuss some of the problems you've experienced or heard about concerning the schools and teachers?

Sunshine: Well, most of the teachers, but not all of them (I can't generalize) are not qualified to teach. Sometimes intelligent pupils amend or correct for the teachers!!! Few months ago I saw an interview in Al-hurrah TV, with the Iraqi minister of education; he said that most of the teachers are not qualified morally nor vocationally to teach!!! When I heard that, I was shocked. Let me give you an example, I have a relative who is my dad's cousin. She is 19 years old, she didn't pass the third class for so many years, so her parents decided to send her to the teaching institution!! I talked to her few times, I saw that she has not been unenlightened at all and she can't even make a conversation!!! How could anyone imagine that she will elevate a generation!!! That what I can't understand!! The other thing that is annoying to me is that unfortunately some teachers are very extremist, especially the religion teachers. This year, I had problems like that. I had to talk to my mom and she talked with the headmistress. My teacher used to tell me that I would go to hell because I don't wear al-hijab. She always hurts my feelings and treats me like I am a bad person. My sister who is 7 years old, feels terrified from the religion teacher, she don't want to go to school and she cries a lot, because her teacher keeps telling them stories about agony and death. My sister complains from nightmares all the time!!!...

Click on the picture for the complete In T View.

Interview by Mister Ghost

Most photos are Sunshine's, Days of My Life
Sunrise on the water, sunset from photo-montage Leap Frog
Women's Rights are Human Rights, Amir Normandi - Testing Human Rights
Layout and photo-montage "Bébé Sunshine dans les Fleurs du Canada"
& Sunshine's finger in the Sunset, Diane - Arts for Democracy

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