Wikipedia entry: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amiriyah_shelter_bombing
Dedicated to the Memory of L.A.S. (For full post, scroll down to the Sunday, Feb 15, 2004 post in the link)
“…The sirens would begin shrieking- the women and children would pause in the midst of eating or scolding, say a brief prayer in their heart and worry about their loved ones above the ground- the men who refused to remain inside of the shelter in order to make room for their wives and kids.
The bombs fell hard and fast at around 4 a.m. The first smart bomb went through the ventilation, through the first floor of the shelter- leaving a gaping hole- and to the bottom ‘basement’ of the shelter where there were water tanks and propane tanks for heating water and food. The second missile came immediately after and finished off what the first missile missed. The doors of the advanced shelter immediately shut automatically- locking over 400 women and children inside.
It turned from a shelter into an inferno; explosions and fire rose from the lower level up to the level that held the women and children and the water rose with it, boiling and simmering. Those who did not burn to death immediately or die of the impact of the explosions, boiled to death or were steamed in the 900+ º F heat.
We woke in the morning to see the horrors on the news. We watched as the Iraqi rescue workers walked inside of the shelter and came out crying and screaming- dragging out bodies so charred, they didn’t look human. We saw the people in the area- men, women and children- clinging to the fence surrounding the shelter and screaming with terror; calling out name after name… searching for a familiar face in the middle of the horror.
The bodies were laid out one beside the other- all the same size- shrunk with heat and charred beyond recognition. Some were in the fetal position, curled up, as if trying to escape within themselves. Others were stretched out and rigid, like the victims were trying to reach out a hand to save a loved one or reach for safety. Most remained unrecognizable to their families- only the size and fragments of clothing or jewelry indicating the gender and the general age.
She was a retired schoolteacher who quit after the Amiriyah bombing. She had no thoughts of quitting but after schools resumed in April of 1991, she went on the first day to greet her class of 2nd graders. She walked into the classroom and found only 11 of her 23 students. “I thought they had decided not to come…” I remember her saying to my mother in hushed tones, later that year,”… but when I took attendance, they told me the rest of the children had died in the shelter…” She quit soon after that because she claimed her heart had broken that day and she couldn’t look at the children anymore without remembering the tragedy. …
My mother’s friend shook her head sadly, “They tried, but she just refuses to leave. She has been taking care of the place since the rescue teams finished cleaning it out… she lost 8 of her children here.” I was horrified with that fact as the woman approached us. Her face was stern, yet gentle- like that of a school principal or… like that of a mother of 8 children. She shook hands with us and took us around to see the shelter. This is where we were. This is where the missiles came in… this is where the water rose up to… this is where the people stuck to the walls.
Her voice was strong and solid in Arabic. We didn’t know what to answer. She continued to tell us how she had been in the shelter with 8 of her 9 children and how she had left minutes before the missiles hit to get some food and a change of clothes for one of the toddlers. She was in the house when the missiles struck and her first thoughts were, “Thank God the kids are in the shelter…” When she ran back to the shelter from her house across the street, she found it had been struck and the horror had begun. She had watched the corpses dragged out for days and days and refused to believe they were all gone for months after. She hadn’t left the shelter since- it had become her home.
She pointed to the vague ghosts of bodies stuck to the concrete on the walls and ground and the worst one to look at was that of a mother, holding a child to her breast, like she was trying to protect it or save it. “That should have been me…” the woman who lost her children said and we didn’t know what to answer.
It was then that I knew that the place was indeed ‘maskoon’ or haunted… since February 13, 1991 it has been haunted by the living who were cursed with their own survival.
1 hour 20 min Documentary
2:154 And call not those who are slain in the way of Allah “dead.” Nay, they are living, only ye perceive not.
May ALLAH accept the martyrdom of Naik Ashraf and shower His blessings on the brave warrior. The cowardly indians once again showing their depravity and bloodlust. The first soldier martyred was a Pakistani in a cross border raid by the indians. When Pakistan offered an impartial United Nations inquiry into a subsequent clash, the indians in typical fashion refused the investigation for fear of their lies being exposed.
No PR6/2013-ISPR Dated: January 15, 2013
Rawalpindi – January 15, 2013:
Indian troops again resorted to cease fire violation and carried out unprovoked firing this evening at Line of Control in Hot Spring and Jandrot sectors from 2200 to 2300 Hours. Resultantly Naik Ashraf embraced Shahadat at Kundi Post due to unprovoked Indian firing. Naik Ashraf is survived by a wife and 3 daughters.
On September 16, 1931, Umar Mukhtar the famous and courageous mujahid who fought against the Italian occupiers was executed at the age of 70.
“I shall not cease to fight against thee and thy people until either you leave my country or I leave my life. And I swear to thee by Him who knows what is in men’s hearts that if my hands were not bound this very moment, I would fight thee with my bare hands, old and broken as I am …”
— As narrated by Muhammad Asad (Leopold Weiss) in his book “The Road to Mecca” as Umar al-Mukhtar’s reply to (the butcher of Fezzan and butcher of Ethiopia) General Rodolfo Graziani of Italy.
As Italy’s forces unleashed a barbaric campaign to colonize Libya/Cyrenaica, brave souls rose up in Jihad against the oppressors. Indiscriminate killing of Libyan men, women & children was carried out by the Italians to realize their goals. A whole people were imprisoned as thousands were sent to concentration camps by the Italians to suffer in squalid starving conditions. But brave warriors waged a Jihad of self-defense and watered Libya’s soil with their blood. These mujahids live on as Martyrs.
On February 11 , 1984 Maqbool Bhat of Kashmir was sent to the gallows by the Indian occupiers of Kashmir. This hero and son of Kashmir still lives on as a martyr who refused to choose personal liberty over his people’s liberty. He could have found a haven away from Kashmir and built a nice cosy life for himself. Instead he choose to sacrifice his own well being for FREEDOM. A touching tribute by Mohammed Hussain Khan Altaf can be read @ The Great Martyr
Some words of Maqbool from above link,
“Freedom cannot be limited and compartmentalized; I however, cannot be made to compromise on my basic belief of a complete freedom for my homeland”
“Struggle is the best criterion to judge not only who is for and against the truth, but also to expose the hypocrites”.
“the end of communication is the beginning of all violence; where communication stops, beating, burning and hanging takes place’. For the fulfillment of my desire for my land and my people, I have gone through ‘the beating and the burning’ at the hands of those who deny truth. Having failed to break my spirit, only ‘hanging’ is left for them to try. May the Almighty strengthen my resolve and fortitude and bestow upon me the patience that I may not waver in this final test.”
To stand up to and defy the standard bearers of tyranny is the greatest honor of humanity. The history of ripping off from tyrants their democratic robes’ and exposing their monstrosity is as old as the history of man.
Nations survive because of that (strong) spirit, that abiding passion for liberty, which according to our Holy Prophet (PBUH), “emboldens one to recite the Kalima-e-Haq (the call for the truth) before a tyrant, and that too with the conviction that this is the greatest Jihad”.
In this never ending conflict between truth and falsehood, those who respond to their conscience and identify themselves with the standard bearers of truth, covet no rewards and desire no praise. This long and trying struggle sees many crests and troughs. The passage of time and unfavorable circumstance may affect its intensity but cannot put and end to it. It is the greatest duty of every upholder of truth to continue this struggle in all its intensity.