I was struck this week by the letter purportedly from deposed Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, in which he urged the people of Iraq not to hate Americans, but to hate our leaders. It is a reminder, in a way, that the people who make up a nation are often quite separate from the government of that country. Just as many of the Iraqi people were quite different from Saddam, there are many Americans who disagree with the administration and its policies, especially as they apply to Iraq.
But the real price of armed conflict on the innocent civilians of a country is most evident in this photo, republished today on MSNBC’s Photo Blog. It is devastating to think that thousands of people once lived in these buildings. How many of them died, simply because they were in the wrong place — or they were of the wrong nationality — at the wrong time?