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‘We need the literature of other countries to expand our
horizons and stimulate our ideas. Without it, we are not only
diminished, we are starved’
(The Times, Magnus Linklater 29/06/05)
Thura's Diary: A Young Girl's Life in War-torn B
by Thura Al-Windawi
Age Range: 12+
On 15th March 2003, a few days before the invasion of Iraq began, 19-year-old
Thura, the eldest of three sisters from a close-knit, middle-class Shia Muslim family,
began writing a diary. As the bombs fell on Baghdad her family were constantly on
the move until they finally fled to the countryside. For two months Thura recorded
her thoughts about the war, using it as a way of coming to terms with the chaos
that surrounded her.
The diary gives us a compelling insight into the way in which the war affected Thura, her family and friends, and how she dealt with the horror of war. Although she writes of her fears for the future of her country, she continues to hope for peace. The lives of many were and still are being destroyed in Iraq, but thankfully Thura’s words, translated from the Arabic, survive and provide us with an eye-witness account.
(Outside In: Children’s Books in Translation, Milet Publishing, 2005)