Let me tell you about Nadia, a friend and colleague in Iraq. From May 2003 until last April she worked for a newspaper in Baghdad. Then two of its reporters were killed and its editor, after receiving repeated threats, fled the country. So Nadia was out of a job. She tried to keep busy doing translation work for various foreigners, but one was assassinated and two were kidnapped. Almost all the others left the country or were afraid to leave their homes.
Nadia’s family is Christian—members of the Chaldean Catholic Church, one of the oldest churches in the world. In that they are a bit atypical, since most Iraqis are Muslims. But in many ways their story is representative of families in Iraq’s middle class. They knew better than anyone the evils of Saddam Hussein. They thought that things could only get better after he was removed from power—that the greatest superpower in the history of the world would leave behind a new Iraq.