Friday, September 4, 2009

Oregon Air Show II: My Mom's Memories of War

An American may be proud of the US Army, the US Air Force, the US Navy and all the other military forces but what about my mom and me as non-Americans? It was the Oregon International Air Show. Many people were there to visit the "strength" of the US. Almost all of them seemed to be Americans. Mom and I were probably the only Iranians there; from the Middle East, a region full of foreign interferences and wars, one after another during its long long history. Sometimes I think this part of the world is a "war zone" for ever.

It was the time for the Air Force Thunderbirds show. I think it was a F-16 Falcon or maybe a F-14. I don't know exactly. A plane was approaching the croud. We could just hear a regular sound as other planes. Then it became closer and closer and its sound became louder and louder. The Falcon passed the croud and that was the time when people were holding their ears while smiling but my mom was holding her ears and crying. I saw tears in her eyes. Our burnt memories were lightened up after many years. My heart started beating faster and mom's tears began falling.

It was April 1988 in Tehran when an Iraqi war plane, a Falcon or a Phantom, dropped a bomb on our back street. Both the plane and the bomb were made in USA. The sound of the plane and the explosion wave broke all our windows. We hided in our underground basement. It was our shelter when we were attacked. Lightless and fearful. I was only 3 and my brother was 7 years old. He was just about to go to school and I was a little kid. We were held by mom's arms in darkness. Her arms were full of love and worriness. Dad was out at work. Phones were dead. After the red alarm went down, we ran out to the street. Mom just took a bag of my "baby supplies" and we were trying to get to a relative's house. People in the street were shouting at mom that why she is out with two kids at this time. We should find a safe place. Less than a month after that, we moved to Mashhad.

This time it was August 2009 in the US. I ask you Americans. Please stop your country exporting weapons, bombs, war planes, tanks, war ships and etc to all around the world. Please stop it, please. You may like your strength. You may smile at the sound of your war planes in a happy show in the US but we don't like them. We couldn't smile at them when they were dropping bombs on us. Please stop it. No one can bring peace to our world with war. Thank you.


Dina said...

What a hard day for you two. But we thank you for sharing the feelings and memories.
I know how your mom felt. The safety of my kids was the most awful worry I suffered during the 1991 Gulf War. The Scud missiles from Iraq fell near enough to our apartment to rattle the windows and make a huge boom as we sat in our sealed (with masking tape) room, wearing gas masks.

I know how you feel too, and agree that it would be great not to have to make and buy and sell weapons. But unfortunately, if we did not have jets from America, we would have been "pushed into the sea" years ago.

Greetings to your mother. Please Green, take her somewhere fun today.

Lynette said...

Meead, you're a brave, articulate young man. I know your mother must be proud of you.

Anonymous said...

The jets were two F-15s from the Oregon Air National Guard.

Kim said...

Just catching up with your posts today (putting off my studying :-)

This post touched me very much. Have we, the USA, every aknowledged or apologized for setting up the
Shaw in the 1950s, for turning Saddam Husein to attack Iran, all in the name of protecting "our" oil interests? May I say that many Americans are appalled at what has been done in our name. We've been hoping the new president's policies would be a breath of fresh air and truth, but changes are slow in coming. I will be calling the White House tomorrow to leave a message that the American people do not see any wisdom in escalating troop numbers in Afghanistan but wish to replace military presence there and elsewhere in the Middle East with diplomatic advances and international humanitarian aid presence not overseen by any military. It is my hope that this administration will turn from the fear and greed-based policies we've been led to and to seek normal relations with all nations in the region, seek resolution for the Palestinian people and the Israelis, and stop kidding ourselves about the USA having a "war on terror." Your presence, you relationships with Americans, your speaking into our lives with your experiences and those of your mother. . .this is how change comes. It must be so hard for you living among us, as we must seem so ignorant of how we affect Iranian lives and lives of people everywhere. Thank you for your counsel to speak out against war.