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June 29, 2007


Rebecca del Rio

I had to skip ahead in your narrative because I was so afraid this had gone badly--and could not bear the tension. Such a small taste of what you were made to endure.
Thank God your daughter and her classmates were safe.
I hope that by sharing this with us some of the residual tension and fear has been relieved. You are never far from my thoughts, friends.

A Woman in America

You dear, dear woman. I am so, so sorry for what the American government has done to your country.

As hard as it is to read your heart ache, I know it is so much harder to live than I would ever know.

I pray for you and your family, that God would protect you all, guarding you mind, body and soul. I have no strength, but He does. You are not forgotten, and there are people here who care about your lives. You do matter. Your life is important, and so are your daughter's hopes and dreams.

Harry Barnes

I am relieved that no one was physically harmed. But your experience tells us a great deal about the stress of daily life in Iraq. I hope that the students still did well in the exams.


I'm so glad it all turned out to be nothing much. I know that heart in your throat feeling. It's hard being a mother and a daughter. You deserve an award for bravery just taking care of your family.


My heart was in my throat as I read this story...thank heavens there was a happy ending this time. But what a reminder, too, of the constant stress people live under, the unthinkable thoughts lurking in the back of one's mind, all the time. The cascade of stress hormones that release at the first sign of a problem. And the discomfort. You didn't mention your daughter's experience of sitting in a darkened, hot, stuffy room, proctors not allowing folks to leave. Food? Ha! Water? I hope so, but recalling similar exams it's been my lot to take, doubtful. And the stress of this final, difficult exam!

Finally, your story reminds us of all the times that parents gathered at the gate are NOT relieved by the news. The devastation of hearing--as some high school parents did last week--that their children are gone forever. It's enough to make an angel weep.

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"Inside Iraq" is a blog updated by Iraqi journalists who have worked for McClatchy Newspapers. They are based in Baghdad. These are firsthand accounts of their experiences. Their complete names are withheld for security purposes.

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