Writing from the outpost of Iraq yesterday, Carolyn Cole produces beautiful images of still life in Iraq, like this photograph of Iraqi’s yesterday.
Cole sends her pics with these words from Baghdad and Najaf:
“When I was last in Iraq, summer of 2004, the country was in a violent downward spiral. U.S. troops were fighting insurgents for control of the city of Najaf and indications were that things would only get worse.
Going back to cover the exit of the last U.S. combat brigade has given me a chance not only to witness the end of a chapter in U.S. military history, but also to visit with the Iraqi people who have suffered greatly over these last seven years.
They continue to be plagued by gas and electricity shortages, making the high temperatures unbearable. One way to cope is by jumping into the Tigris River, once off-limits in the downtown area where Saddam Hussein’s headquarters used to be.
Some neighborhoods are now safe enough for a foreigner to walk, but entire sections of the city are walled off behind concrete barricades making it difficult to see or enter. What I was able to see appears mostly unchanged.
At every intersection, police and military checkpoints stop traffic to open trunks and check passengers for proper identification. They use mirrors on long poles to scan the underside of vehicles for bombs. Cameras should be kept out of sight to avoid being detained or confiscated. After demanding to look through all of my pictures, one Iraqi police officer reminded me, “This is not America.”
See more of Cole’s photographs during the earlier years in Iraq and those of the last U.S. combat brigade to leave.
Thanks Carolyn for the quality work abroad.
~Posted by Horiwood.Com, Hollywood California USA. 9.1.10~
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