Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Chat over a smoke

I was in an FE college last week as an examiner. Taking up my pariah post outside during a break, I was approached by two men for a light. We got talking.

They were Kurds, and have been here since well before the fall of Saddam. They talked a little about what life had been like in the Old Country and Saddam's tactic of shifting his people to Kurdish areas as a surer method of controlling them than military means. I asked if it mattered whether the newcomers were Sunni or Shia. They said it made no difference; it was not about religion, but about greed.

I asked if the Kurds in Iran were giving that government a hard time, but they avoided the question. So I wondered what would happen if the Americans pulled out. The older one looked at me for a bit, and said,

We would be - I'm sorry for the word - in the shit.

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