It is not uncommon for OPB to be playing on my car radio. What is uncommon is for me to be listening to it during my lunch break. As luck would have it, my Lean Cuisine looked utterly unappealing by the time mid-day rolled around, so I decided to run out and get a caesar salad instead. I left the parking lot just in time to hear most of the Fresh Air interview with Pulitzer Prize winner, Anthony Shadid, who was talking about his book, Night Draws Near: Iraq's People in the Shadow of America's War. If the book is half as interesting as the interview, which can be found here, it definitely demands to be read.
Shadid, who is the Baghdad correspondant for The Washington Post, has a ready store of anecdotes about the Iraqi people and what our war has meant for them. Some of the stories are enlightening and are just horrifying and sad. People do and endure some ugly things during times of war. It's difficult to imagine what it is really like to live in such situations.
I've heard some pretty similar stories about Nazi Germany (and later communist East Germany) from my mother and grandparents. Their neighbors actually turned them in to the Stasi, but I'll have to write about that another time. This time my focus is simply on pointing out that the interview can be heard at OPB's website and that the book definitely sounds worth looking into.