"Listening to Iraq"

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A moving column from Ann Friedman (aka "one blogger") about the human stories of Iraq fading from view:

The news outlets that still report from Iraq rarely publish accounts of daily life there. Rarer still are narratives from outside the confines of the Green Zone. Sure, we get snippets of information from Iraqi reporters working with Western journalists, but most of the time, Iraqis' voices come to us in the form of react-quotes after a marketplace bombing or sectarian uprising. We don't see what it's like for Iraqis to walk home from the scene of the violence, then make dinner, then put their kids to bed. We lack the humanizing power of detail. [...]

But between 2006 and 2007, almost all of those bloggers, Riverbend included, left Iraq out of fear for their safety. Some continue to blog about the war, but do so from places like Philadelphia or Amman, and primarily rely on news accounts and updates they hear from relatives still in the country. Meanwhile, day-to-day stories of life under occupation have become much harder to find, especially for readers who don't read Arabic.

There's more there, read the whole thing.

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Matthew Yglesias is a former writer and editor at The Atlantic.

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