By Zahed Haftlang, Najah Aboud, Meredith May
Khorramshahr, Iran, might 1982—It used to be the bloodiest conflict of 1 of the main brutal wars of the 20 th century, and Najah, a twenty-nine-year-old wounded Iraqi conscript, used to be nose to nose with a thirteen-year-old Iranian baby soldier who was once ordered to kill him. as a substitute, the boy devoted an brilliant act of mercy. It used to be an act that a long time later could store his personal life.
This is a notable tale. it's gut-wrenching, crucial, and mind-blowing. It’s a battle tale. A love tale. A page-turner of significant ethical dimensions. An eloquent and haunting act of witness to horrors past grimmest fiction, and something of towering good looks. extra importantly, it's a tale that needs to be advised, and a richly textured view into an missed clash and misunderstood zone. this is often the good untold tale of the kids and younger males whose lives have been sacrificed on the whim of vicious dictators and unnecessary, barbaric wars.
Little has been written of the Iran-Iraq conflict, which used to be one of the so much brutal conflicts of the 20 th century, one fought with chemical guns, ballistic missiles, and cadres of kid soldiers.
The numbers concerned are staggering:
—All instructed, it claimed 700,000 lives—200,000 Iraqis, and 500,000 Iranians.
—Young males of army carrier age—eighteen and above in Iraq, fifteen and above in Iran—died within the maximum numbers.
—80,000 Iranian baby infantrymen have been killed, usually among the a while of 16 and seventeen.
—The nations spent a mixed 1.1 trillion cash combating the war.
infrequently does this sort of reportage be triumphant so energy- absolutely as literature. extra hardly nonetheless does such searingly exceptional literature—fit to face beside Remarque, Hemingway, and O’Brien—emerge from in the back of “enemy” lines.
yet Zahed, a toddler, and Najah, a tender restaurateur, are infrequent men—not simply survivors, yet masterful, wondrously proficient storytellers. Written with award-winning journalist Meredith may perhaps, this can be literature of a truly excessive order, set down with ardour, urgency, and consummate ability. This tale is an confirmation that, in any case, it's our humanity that transcends politics and borders and saves us all.
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Additional resources for I, Who Did Not Die
Then I did something I’d only dreamed about. I took my first vacation. Casablanca lived up to its reputation—I walked off the plane and into a swirling bazaar of delicacies, of both the edible and the female kind. I wore a tight suit with wide lapels, just like John Travolta, and bought drinks at the bar for everyone around me. The Moroccan women I met were extremely generous with their time and attention. They didn’t cover their heads with hijabs or concern themselves with family honor, which was all right with me.
I danced and dined and kissed a different girl each night, like a prophet in paradise. In fact, I was contemplating extending my vacation by a second month when I turned on the TV news in my rented apartment one morning and discovered that I was suddenly a wanted man. Saddam had ordered all Iraqi men outside the country who were of fighting age to return immediately, which included those born in 1952 like me. The Iraqi government was getting increasingly worried that the Islamic Revolution in Iran would spill over the border and create a similar Shia uprising against the Baathist ruling party.
Material damages added another combined $350 billion. Together, the belligerents lost 5,000 tanks and 500 combat aircraft. In the aftermath, the economies of both countries were plunged into multimillion dollar debt, economic development came to a standstill, and much of the oil industry throughout the region was decimated by air raids. In the end, nothing changed. Both sides eventually wore down and agreed to a ceasefire that included no reparations or boundary changes. And, unlike any conflict before it, prisoners-of-war were held indefinitely by both sides; more than 115,000 broken and forgotten men slowly released over a ten-year period after the war.