A Letter from the people of Mosul

To his Excellency, his Holiness, Pope Francis

I hope that this message finds you at your best of health,

I am writing to you about a nation being crushed by wars, dying everyday on the hands of a guerilla group claiming they carry the faith, invaded my city and destroyed it into ruins, they killed the human being, and displaced the rest, and a great number of my people are captives under their rule, while others are out in the open, nothing covers them of cold or rain.

Your Excellency Pope Francis,

I didn’t write to the King of Mecca, instead, I am writing to you, for I know you never returned a man’s hands empty, and the unjust finds their justice on your hands. We do not forget how the holy father his Holiness Pope Benedict XV during the first world war when he drew his holy care to Mosul and sent his Apostolic Curte to Mosul to honor the people and thanking them for their role in establishing peace.

I am writing to you, asking you and wishing that you call to assist in treating our wounded, sheltering our displaced and your help in sending the necessary medical and humanitarian assistance to them.

We are confident that your Holiness will respond to our plea, and our plea will reach you, and we are hoping that you will help what is left of my people that was torn by wars.

May peace be upon you

Mosul Eye 

Dec. 4th ….

​I’m writing today and I am away from Mosul, away from my love. I was compelled to leave my beloved city, and I have no idea if I will ever go back one day, maybe not .. but I left behind me a city that death has hijacked its soul and people.

I left my city seeking the old wisdom, in the hope’s to find a cure to cure whas is damaged of its soul.

The last scene my eyes lied on was a corpse hanging of a power pole.

I tried to lool behind me to have my last glimpse of the city, but I didn’t dare to look back .. I was telling myself that this maybe the last time and I want to save the last scene of the city in my eyes

Yes, I am safe now, but my heart and soul are back in Mosul.

Cycling against the Islamic state

​Biking Vs. Islamic State 

This is how we challenge the caliphate and its preachers!

When the Islamic State came and invaded our Mosul, they brought all the destruction with them, and they said “we came to you with the death and slaughter”

But, see what we brought to you?

The Bicycles to challenge the caliphate

I challenged ISIL once by listening to violinist Itzhak Perlman at the heart of Mosul, and that was a great hit to them, but now, another challenge of a different kind … A friend of mine, went to Mosul today and rude a bicycle challenging the caliph, the caliphate and the Islamic State.

My friend Jumana Mumtaz , went to Mosul, wearing her jeans, riding a bicycle, in a statement to declare to the caliphate that “we will not allow Mosul to become the land of the caliphate, we will play music, sing, and celebrate in Mosul, and will not allow you to kill our dreams”

Thank you Jumana

Mosul, Now and Post-ISIL – Part II

​Mosul, Now and Post-ISIL

Part II

Suggestions of resolving the unsolved issues of Nainawa tribes: 

A couple of day ago, I posted the latest of news from Mosul and promised a second part of the report. In this part, I would like now, to start talking about the next steps required to take place after liberating Mosul:

1- Total reconstruction of the city’s infrastructure, specifically the government buildings.

2- Contracting with international construction companies to rebuild the University of Mosul after all the destruction it encountered by ISIL.

3- Constructing a big museum for Mosul by the International coalition in cooperation with the Iraqi government to reconstruct all the ruins destroyed by ISIL and distribute them throughout the city.

4- Rebuild Jonah’s shrine for its social and historical importance to the Mosulis, as it is not only important to Muslims, but, it is important to all Abrahamic religions: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.

5-Supporting youth initiatives and train them to participate in building the future for Mosul, especially the initiatives that encourage peaceful coexistence and renounce violence, extremism, and Hardline rhetoric.

The resolution of the tribal issue in Nainawa and our vision to resolve those unsolved issues:

First and foremost, it is a must to distinguish between “Mosul” and its historical identity as I explained it in my interview with the New Yorker (http://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk/the-secret-eye-inside-mosul). Mosul’s identity has no relevance to the identity of the tribes. Mosul is not “tribal society” as it is being rumored about it, but a civilized and urbanized city, does not have the tendency to religiosity, and neither the city’s Christians, nor its Muslims have identified themselves as religious, but as Mosuli urbanized citizens. 

The tribes are considered a massive human and economic power, and it has its effective negative and positive role in the Iraqi society, and in Nainawa’s society in particular, it can provide to Mosul’s future great opportunity to reform the social and economic systems of the city. It is important to point out that invoking any effective change on those tribe through the suggested recommendations below will not only affect the Sunni tribes in Iraq only, but their effects will ripple beyond the Iraqi borders, to the tribes in the neighboring Syria, which will cause an economical effect over large swaths of land expanding between Iraq and Syria due to the strong and deep bonds among the tribes, specifically the tribes populating the borders, in addition to ISIL’s invasion of Nainawa has led to direct interaction between the Arab tribes with the Kurds, especially in Sinjar, Rabi’ya, Qayyara and Nainawa Plains, to the point where is has become very difficult to break this interaction, or to gain back the Arab land, because the Kurdish forces, along with the Yazidi forces and People’s Protection Units has committed genocides against the residents of the Arab areas. Therefore, any chance for the Arab tribes to gain their own political independence, they must gain an effective economical and administrative power in their areas to balance it with the Kurdish and Yazidi forces.

We can divide Nainawa’s tribes according to their geographical distribution to the following areas:

1- The border tribes: They mainly live along the Iraqi-Syrian Border line, and at western Nainawa spanning from Rabiy’a to the north to Ba’aj and Al-Hadhar to the south west. The main tribal power in this area are in the hands of Shammar tribe in Rabiy’a, Bu-Badran, Bu-Hamad and Bu-matyout.

2- The interior tribes: They mainly occupy the areas spanning from Talafar in the north west down through Mosul District and southern Mosul to the south east and south west bordering Makhmur and Nainawa Plains. This area is mainly dominated by Al-O’baids, Al-Jihaish, Al-Zubaids, and branches of Al-Jubur, Al-Na’aim and Ta’is.

3- The middle tribes: they mainly distributed from Qayyar all the way to Shirqat, and they are the pure tribes in Nainawa. Al-Jubur, Al-Lihiab and Al-Saba’awi tribes are their main tribes in this area.

And by reviewing the Islamic state division system, which is the Wilaiyat division, we find that IS division was based on “Small-Local administrative units”, where it divided Nainawa into the following divisions:

1- Dijla Wilaiyat: includes the areas south of Mosul and they are: Qayyar, Shirqat, Al-Hadhar, Al-Zab, Hammam Al-Alil, and the surrounding villages.

2- Al-Jazeera Wilaiyat: includes the areas from Sinjar, Tal Abta, Talafar, Zummar and Al-Ba’aj

3- Mosul Wilaiyat: includes Mosul district and Nainawa plains.

This division provided ISIL administrative power, sustainable development, and great deal of influence, which guaranteed the tribes loyalty because they have their own control over their own economic resources, as well their resources management freely and flexibly.

Based on the previous points, we can determine the optimal method to how invest in tribal Nainawa post-ISIL, because stability and economic power means lasting peace. 

The tribes are not ruled by constant principles and concepts, but rather ruled by the concepts of the power that controls them that provides them with decent circumstances to grow and prosper. therefore, we cannot deal with the tribes as ISIL-Loyalists, but more as loyalists to the economical and administrative system of ISIL, which the Iraqi government failed to provide it to them.

SMALL LOCAL ADMINISTRATIVE UNITS 

The provincial law for provinces not enrolled in a region No. 21 of 2008 provides in its amended Act no. 15 of 2010, in part 1 that: Councils and its structuring procedure, the second article, amended by the second amendment No. 19 of 2013:

– First: Provincial Council: is the legislative and regulatory authority in the province has the right to issue domestic legislation that enables it to administer its affairs in accordance to the principle of administrative decentralization that does not conflict with the constitution and the federal laws that fall within the exclusive powers of the federal authorities.

– Second: councils have the legal status and financial independence, represented by its President or his nominee.

– Third: councils are subject to the regulations of the House of Representatives.

– Fourth: local governments will be responsible for all requirements of the administrative unit management according to the principle of administrative decentralization.

– Fifth: local governments exercise the powers prescribed in the Constitution and federal laws in local affairs except for the exclusive powers of the federal authorities provided for in Article 110 of the Constitution.

This statute provides the legal means to transform Nainawa to small administrative unites that has freedom of management and trade within their jurisdiction, which will help to fast development and economic prosperity that will eventually rewards back to the Iraqi government, and helps It maintains stability in the Sunni Arab areas through the construction of trans-local economic partnerships. We have five examples we may start the project with them:

– Dijla Administrative unit: includes Qayyara, Shirqat, Al-Hadhad, Al-Zab, Hammam Al-Alil and their surrounding villages.

– Rabiy’a Administrative unit: Rabiya is considered a stand-alone unit as it is majorly dominant by Shammer tribe.

Mosul Administrative Unit: this unit may be jointly managed by the known merchant families in the city and the dominant tribes of Mosul. This will require a future thorough study on how to implement it in Mosul.

– Jazeera Administrative unit: includes Sinjar, Tal Abta, Talafar, Zummar and Ba’aj. This unit will not only influence directly the tribes of this region, but its influence will pass over to Syria and Anbar as well.

– Nainawa Plains Administrative unit: this unit will face great challenges to be implemented in this region, due to its heavy intertwining among the Arabs, the Kurds and the religious and ethnic minorities. Establishing a universal economic partnership for all those groups through multinational investments will contribute to future and permanent resolution among those minorities.

How to treat those small administrative units?

1- To deal with Nainawa as separated units, not one single unit

2- Each administrative unit is a stand-alone province from a social, economic, services and management perspective, and each unit has the right to issue its laws and regulations that do not conflict with the Constitution that will allow it to manage its affairs.

3- Give the tribe leaders the chance to represent the domestic authority in their areas.

4- Revive the commercial role of the Sunni tribes at western border areas of Nineveh, and granting the tribes commercial freedom in association with their local government and give them the freedom manage trade transportation through their areas.

5- Grant the local tribes administrative authority over their areas that gives them the freedom to manage their regions and maintain their connection with the provincial and domestic government. Also to facilitate the tribes’ role by assisting them to establish the necessary governing institutions to regulate their residents’ affairs.

6- Grant the tribes officially to oversee the trade ways that pass through their territory. This will provide the tribes an income revenue to develop their areas and employ their unemployed resources.

7- Deal with the tribes upon economic bases, not upon sectarian bases, through opening the opportunity for investment in their regions. Those local administrative units help provide great investment opportunities for industrial and cultivation development.

8-  Enable the decentralization of the small administrative units as part of a broader reform. This step will assist in redefining the relationship between central and local authorities, and re-thinking the key issues in representation and participation, accountability and local development, which aims eventually to the reformation of the political system itself.

9- Establish micro local councils at the areas mentioned earlier, and dealing with those councils by the domestic and central governments as companies of group of companies operating on the principle of mutual benefit.

10- Those boards will provide support to the tribes at their regions to create a media platforms that will meet the needs of their geographic areas under their management. Media will give the tribes a sense of autonomy and administrative power that will, in the end, return to the bigger local administrations, which are the local government and provincial council administration.

11- Dealing with the tribes as joint-stock companies in a larger company, which is “the provincial government” that will pay the tribes to develop their areas larger and faster.

12- Establishing census and studies centers specialized in Nainawa’s tribes to provide a permanent and updated database about the tribes and to come up with modern perceptions about the growth and development of the small administrative units and for the purpose of regulatory and future plans of those units.

13- Avoid repeating the Sahawat (Awakening) experience in Nainawa. The real awakening that should be developed is the economic awakening and not military. The tribes will gain economic stability will seek to impose security at their regions, which will eventually bring peace and security throughout Nainawa. Economy will force the tribes to sustain safety and stability to prosper.

14- Urge the tribes to adopt agricultural development and rebuilding agricultural systems in their areas, which are available at large swaths west of Nainawa, Nainawa Plains and south of Nainawa, by providing the freedom to import agricultural equipment.

Those some of the solutions we believe that, if they are implemented as suggested, they will help, on the long run, sustain peace and retain the coherence, not in Mosul only, but over all Nainawa, as well it will force stability on the other side of the border, in Syria.

Mosul, Now and Post-ISIL – Part I – The events taking place in the city

Over the past few days I have been trying to write you somethings, but I feel I’m not capable of writing anything. Lots of pain, fear, sadness, and thinking has been haunting me lately to the point all of it is blocking from writing to you, but I decided to write never the less, about incidents happened in the past few days, family conversations, and others with people from Mosul’s old market “Bab Assarai”, a few first-hand accounts, and some news about ISIL.

The Western bank is still quite. People are anxious, but hopeful that the advances of operations on the southern front will eventually lead to put an end to all this quietness and marking the beginning of the battles. What they fear the most is the uncertainty with all this. They keep saying “Liberating Mosul’s airport will bring us hope”, because they feel the operations on the Eastern bank are taking much longer than anticipated. And ISIL is constantly patrolling the Western bank.

The Eastern bank, however, people are living a bigger fear; they are constantly under fire, ISIL is bombing the heavily occupied residential areas with mortar shells and people are stranded inside their homes, don’t know what to do, or where to go!

The most significant events that took place during the past few days:

1- The liberated neighborhoods on the eastern bank of Mosul are: Al-Khadhraa Apartments, Al-Tahrir, Al-Zahraa, and Al-Zuhur. Al-Muharibin neighborhood is under ISIL mortar fire. So far, the number of civilian casualties reached 18 people, some of which are buried at Al-Jana’ain school at Al-Muharibin neighborhood. 

2- ISIL uses snipers to target anyone leaving their home at the areas still under its control, like Al-Muthanna, Al-Qahira, Al-Qadisiya, and Al-ssukar.

3- ISIL executed 8 people in public after their attempts to reach the liberated neighborhoods, and detained their female relatives who participated in their attempts. The number of detained female relatives are 3 elderly ladies, 2 children and 2 young ladies

4- ISIL captured 12 people attempted to reach the liberated areas. ISIL, later, set them in a trapped house and bombed it and claimed that the house was targeted by the coalition and suffered civilian casualties!

5- The bridges in Mosul, aside from the old bridge, are all out of service. Today, the bridge was very congested because ISIL families were moving from the Eastern bank to the western bank. I can safely say that there is no presence of ISIL families on the eastern bank. ISIL now considers the entire eastern bank as “Dar Harb” (a war zone), and I believe that in less than a couple of weeks, the entire eastern bank will be liberated, some of its neighborhoods maybe will be freed without any significant fighting.

6- Till date, the number of civilian casualties has reached about 70 people because of the strikes and ISIL’s mortar shells as it is targeting the residents, and by car bombs among residential areas.

7- ISIL killed 3 people by its snipers at Al-Zuhur neighborhood in Mosul after their attempt to leave their homes and join the Iraqi forces.

8- The medical situation is very critical and dire in the city.

9- I learned about a group of ISIL fighter, about 30 members of them along with their families, have surrendered to the Peshmerga in a secret deal with leaders from “Tai” tribe and the Kurdish Asayish group. the deal took place in northern Mosul.

10- The infrastructure of Mosul is completely destroyed since ISIL’s invasion of the city. ISIL destroyed all the historical ruins and the sensitive structure of the city, and coalition bombardment destroyed all the government buildings.

11- Many houses on the eastern bank ISIL turned them into ammunition warehouses and booby-traps.

12- I came to learn that many ISIL fighters are attempting to flee but they don’t have any means or ways to flee. Also, ISIL is executing anyone attempts to flee under the accusation of “Withdrawal on the day of crawl” (meaning: withdrawal on the battlefield).

13- The way the Iraq military is dealing with the citizens of Mosul at the liberated areas on the Eastern bank helped to relieve a remarkable amount of pressure on the residents on the Western bank of Mosul and many start to feel settled by this type of treatment. They are waiting eagerly and patiently for the forces to reach their areas.

The prices of food are getting more and more expensive, but the problem is not in the prices as much as it about the people and their inability to afford to buy what they need. I was very surprised yesterday to learn that there is French goods in the market (Fresh vegetables), specifically Turnips and Potatoes! I have no idea how did those goods got into Mosul! The Turkish goods are already available in Mosul’s markets for a long time, and the Saudi goods like fresh groceries that used to fill Mosul’s markets through Syria are no longer seen in the markets because of the roads are completely disconnected.

The price of a Whiskey bottle has decreased a little bit. Red Label used to be sold for 300 thousand Iraqi Dinars and now it is sold for 250 thousand although it is very scarce. The price of a bottle of Yeni Raki (Turkish Raki) is now sold for 200 thousand Iraqi Dinars after it used to be sold for 250 thousand. There are other types, also scarce. A friend of mine told me that he managed to buy a “Jack Denials” for 500 thousand Dinars! The is saving it and promised himself to drink some of it the moment Mosul Liberation is declared and will save the rest as a historic record!

I must say that I should have shared news like this long time ago, even though I recall that I mentioned something about the trade of Alcohol in Mosul the beginning of 2015. Despite of the ruthlessness of ISIL, Alcohol trade continued in Mosul regardless of the severe penalties and punishments ISIL has imposed about it. I recorded on March 9th, 2015, that someone built a small brewery to produce alcohol locally, but later, ISIL exposed him and killed the brewery owner. I also recall that when the roads were still open between Baghdad and Mosul, a taxi driver used to transport alcohol by storing it in one of his car parts (the windshield washer tank), but unfortunately, ISIL exposed him as well. 

At the beginning, the penalty for an alcohol drinker and trader was flogging, confiscating all his goods and paying 100 million Iraqi Dinars in fines, but after that the penalty was changed to execute the trader and the drinker under the accusation of “combating God and his Messenger”! Yet, regardless of ISIL sever punishment, many continued to drink, and those punishments are still active till date.

Meanwhile, the prices of cigarettes for all brands is fixed at 1500 dinars, the most popular brand is Gauloise and in the past few days, it started to be more available than before despite all the penalties imposed by ISIL on smokers. Among the penalties imposed on smokers are cutting the smoker’s finger, detention, fining, apprehending the trader and sometimes executing the seller. The price of the “Muassil” (hooka tobacco) pack, for the hookah smokers may reach to about 10 thousand dinars. Sometimes it is sold in bulk amounts; the price of 250 grams of “Muassil” (honeyed) is about 15 thousand dinars. 

The prices of oil products have skyrocketed since the start of the military operations and as winter started. People are confused as of what they can do. Also, there is a shortage in car fuel as well.

The next part, I will demonstrate the best solutions for Mosul Post-ISIL and what are the best approaches to keep Mosul free of terrorism

Trump, ISIL, and its Escalating Brutality

As we are living under siege in a city where one of the most violent wars is taking place in modern history, the war the Iraqi military and the people of Mosul are fighting against the caliphate state, we watched the US elections very closely. I was anticipating Trump’s winning; it was very obvious. Clinton’s chances to win the presidency against Trump were very slim despite all speculations of her winning, as the current circumstances, nationally and globally, seemed to be fit for Trump. This election is clear proof that the American people are directly affected by Obama’s foreign policy, and I believe that this election urges the American intellect to think clearly and revisit “Brixit” and Trump phenomena, and closely review how the events unfold during the Obama era.

But many Mosulis are asking: how is Clinton’s or Trump’s winning going to affect Mosul’s liberation? And how will the election’s results accelerate liberation ops?

I was asked by many people of my city in this regard whether Trump’s winning will vanquish ISIL in Iraq and Syria. I answered “The American policy is not this simple to apply, it is more complex than it is imagined. Liberation operations might take longer depending on the way ISIL is fighting, in addition to many unsolved issues in the Middle East. Mosul Question (and I am referring to the ‘Mosul Question’ term used after the first worwar) has become an international idsue, not a local matter, and its resolution does not rely on regional powers”.

Anyway, I wanted to share with you your interest in the US elections, which had a similar level of interest to that of the Americans their selves, regardless of many issues that require our full focus, now and after liberation.

The battle for Mosul started over a month ago, the city still, half quite and half under fire. During the past few days, ISIL, for the first time, executed 50 young men after charges of spying. I am very certain  those men were not spied and have no connection to any intel activity. Many of them were detained for false charges. Some were former police officers who already declared their repentance to ISIL, then ISIL, as usual, transgressed. Some were hung on power poles, some were crucified. All took place at the Western bank of Mosul. Some were thrown in the irrigation ditches and others were cut into pieces, and others were hung at Mosul’s enterance on what is known as “Sham Gate” (Bauwabat Al-Sham); it is Mosul’s North Western gate.  

Children, men and women saw those corpses been displayed like this, and none was able to say a word. And what is surprising, one of ISIL fighters was reading Koran next to a hung corps as he is leaning to the power pole. He was reading Koran in full reverence, and keeps on taking a look at the head of the crucified corps!

One of the crucified on a power pole was still alive, covered with blood, no one dared to help him, and no one noticed he was alive. A child pointed at him and told his father “daddy, this man’s eyes are moving!” And everyone was shocked, did not know how to react, if they approach to save him they will end up being hung like him, and if they stay silent they’ll feel bad about him. The man was hanging there for more than 24 hours, but he didn’t die. After a few minutes, 4 fighters passed by him. One of them took a look at the hanging man and heard him painfully moaning and noticed his eyes were moving, then realized that the man was still alive, then said: “this filthy soul God has rejected it and his messenger rejected it, and they refused to take it back!” .. He pulls his gun and shoots the hanging man in the head and ends his life.

This is one of the most morally controversial and dilemmas a human being could ever confront.

The next day, all corpses have disappeared from the streets. We do not know where they were taken, but their images are still present on those poles, unable to unsee those scenes, and no matter what I do to forget them, just closing my eyes recreates the whole scene once more, for a thousand times.

And what is even more horrifying, is that you can hear the voices of the crucified men as they talk! Yes they are dead, yet, they ate talking! They tell their stories, what they were doing when they were alive? Who they saw last? What was their last meal? Who did they talked to last? What they had in mind for their lunch? What they had in mind for dinner? What they would like to do first thing after liberation? Their dreams? .. Thousands of questions could be heard coming off of their silent mouths and open eyes.

At Bab Al-tub, ISIL brought a child, no older than 10-12 years old, claimed to have stolen. They recited the fifth chapter of Koran, and when they reached to verse 38 which it reads: ([As for] the thief, the male and the female, amputate their hands in recompense for what they committed as a deterrent [punishment] from Allah . And Allah is Exalted in Might and Wise.), All they said “this is the punishment of thieves, they never said what did he steal, why did he steal, and how did he steal, all they did is one of them held the child’s arm, and the second was carrying a large chopper and chooped the child’s hand with it. It supposed to chop the hand with only one strike, but the hand was not fully chopped. While the man with the chopper tried to finish the job, the holder took the chopped hand and twisted the hand until it was detached from the child’s arm. The boy was severely bleeding and screaming until he passed out. Another ISIL member rushed to stop the bleeding, and the butcher said “Now Allah has cleared you of the sin you’ve committed, may this will pardon you in front of God at the day of judgment. May God forgive your sin, and you, who witnessed, shall you all learn from this”!

At the Eastern bank of Mosul, and the areas close to the battlefields, ISIL is confiscating houses and turn them into military barracks, and place their car bombs on the streets among occupied houses. People live an unfathomable fear for their lives.

I write to you feeling nothing, neither love, nor hate, nor fear, nor horror, nor safety, nor contentment, nor peace nor war. I feel nothing at all. I wish I can cry, may be that will help lifting off some , but I have lose all meaning, even for crying. All I can think of is the faces of the crucified men. I want to read their faces for a thousand times. I know there are millions of messages they left in their faces, or the blood the young boy have bled off of his hand. All of those drops is not enough to get the world to listen to us and believe what we ate going through.

Our fears are getting bigger everyday, and I still call for the international trusteeship for Mosul, and to grand Mosul a temporary transitioning period to administer its affairs and rebuild its relationship with Baghdad. This demand is a Mosuli demand, and we hope that the nations will meet our demand for the trusteeship.

We do not want to die, is this too much to ask for? We deserve to live, we deserve a second chance, not once but many chances to live. We want to rebuild our schools, we want to build a great museum in the city. We want to give ourselves another chance in life, to live in peace .. is this too much to ask for?

Do not forget Mosul

The founder of Mosul Eye

​The situation in Mosul, Nov. 7th, 2016 – Mosul Eye©

How much Mosul today is like Berlin. Berlin was divided by a cement wall, where Mosul is divided by a wall of fire. To the east of it, a door-to-door war is underway, and huge numbers of people are trapped in their homes, breathing gunpowder instead of Oxygen. What’s happening there is terrifying. Those who live on the Eastern side thinking to cross over to the Western side, but they are afraid that the battles will chase them there. And those who live on the Western side, they are also thinking of crossing over to the Eastern side, but they fear to come under fire and their move might delay the liberation and lose everything.

People are living this huge dilemma, and everyone’s eyes are on the bridges whith huge question in mind: what if the bridges are taken down, and we didn’t cross over to the othet side? How would we traverse? Shall we stay? Shall we move out??

Mosul today is undergoing an unfathomable ordeal, thats is the crossing over ordeal.

Here is what’s happening at the Eastern side of Mosul: 

1- The Eastern bank neighborhoods are divided into two sections, just like the city: a half where it turned into a battlefield at the edges of those neighborhoods, specially Al-Karama and Al-Samah neighborhoods, and the most difficult situation is at Al-Khadraa apartments. A family of four, a couple with two children were killed today by a mortar shell dropped on their residence.

2- Water and power are cut for over a week from the area and people are stranded in their homes, they are afraid to stay and afraid to leave.

3- Al-Khadraa apartments are also divided into two parts: one is under fire, and the other under ISIL’s control. ISIL is trying to confiscate as many apartments as possible to turn them into military bases. Yet, people are holding their ground and refuse to leave their apartments.

4- All forms of life has stopped at the far eastern edge of Al-Khadraa apartments, and it is partially alive at its far western edge of the complex.

5- The residents at the rest of the neighborhoods are afraid that ISIL might take a retaliatory action against them, accusing them of apostasy. They fear for their lives because of the non stop bombardment.

Meanwhile, on the Western side of Mosul: 

1- The atmosphere is calm, but it is the quietness before the storm. This sidy of the city is living on a sleeping volcano of fear, anxity, and horror.

2- ISIL is trying to carrying out business as usual, especially its “real estate divan”, where it is actively confiscating people’s houses accusing their owners of “abandoning the land of Islam”

3- Life starts at 9:00 AM and ends at 1:00 PM. Very small number of people could be seen during those hours, and no store keep their doors open beyond 2:00 PM. 

4- Some families got divided into two halves – half of the family got stuck at the Eastern bank, and afraid to go back to the Western bank, and vice versa. Many families have arranged their position as such if they have to move from one bank to the other, they have a place to stay at each side of the city.

5- ISIL is moving lots of ammunition to homes belong to ISIL among innocent families. Those families live in horror. ISIL is forcing families surrounding those houses to stay in their homes and threatened to kill them if they try to flee. 

I don’t know if we will make it or not, but please inform the forces to be merciful and kind with us once they enter Mosul. Those forces are orderd to obtain all the civil records and documents from ISIL’s headquarters in the city. If you entered those headquarters, and you didn’t find those records, be sure to find them buried in their headquarters; they got secret storages in those headquarters and in the houses they occupied previously. Those records belong to Mosul and its people, and they must be preserved; Mosul’s modern history relies on those records. There are hundreds of manuscripts ISIL stole and they are in the possession of traders in the black market who are still in Mosul.

Please, return those manuscripts.

Also, look for the corpses as well. There are hundreds of bodies buried in mass graves, especially on the road to Badoosh, and on the road to Hammam Al-Alil, south of Mosul, and in Wadi Iqab graveyard. Please, find those graves and re-bury them in dignity, again

Despite all difficulti, fears, and dangers we are facing, ISIL seemed to be getting weaker in the past couple of days. They seemed extremely perplexed. I learned about an argument between a couple of ISIL fighters about Al-Adnani’s prayer in which he said: “Lord, if this state is a state of the Kharijites, then exterminate it, kill all its leaders, and shred its flag”; their argument was the corruption of their alleged state. One of them said “it’s either Al-Adnani was right about this, and this state is actually a state of the Kharijites, and God has listened to him, or, there is a mistake somewhere!” Those types of arguments are going on among the fighters who stayed in Mosul, and I believe that many go through such arguments, specially during A’sr prayers today at one of the mosques, where one of the fighters started talking about the necessity of reviewing the errors (I don’t know which mistakes he is referring to: killing thousands of innocent people? Or the destruction of entire cities?)

The situation in Mosul’s hospitals:

1- Doctors are stranded at the hospitals by ISIL.

2- Many of ISIL bodies arrive at Al-Salam and Ibn Al-Athir hospitals (Ibn Al-Athir is a children’s hospital, but ISIL transformed it into a general hospital for treating its wounded. The hospital is filled with children patients as well). Al-Khansaa hospital is also fillex with wounded ISIL fighters.

3- Sever shortage in medicine in all Mosul’s hospitals.

Food supplies and services:

1- All forms of trade is stopped, mamy grocery stores owners say their supplies will last for a couple of weeks.

2- Prices are high, money is scarce, and many families are unable to meet their needs.

3- Shortage in all forms of fuel as well; car fuel, gas, and kerosene are all scarce.

What did ISIL do today?

1- ISIL executed 6 young men at Al-Islah Al-Zira’ai neighborhood. Most of them were imprisoned for long monthes.

2- ISIL relocated more than 40 families from souther Mosul to the city. I was able to know that ISIL forced them to taked buses and transport them to Mosul. It is clear that ISIL needs more resistants to use them as human shields.

The roads are scary, even during the early hours of the morning, and despite the fact that there are few pedestrians, the streets of Mosul are very scary. ISIL fighters are everywhere, and they locate their military points among residential ateas.

At the end, I say:

Maybe the sun soon will rise in Mosul, and it will be liberated by then, or maybe not. But I ask, if we die, who will bury us?

Do not forget Mosul

The founder of Mosul Eye