• FILE PHOTO: A U.S. soldier watches as a statue of Iraq's President Saddam Hussein falls in central Baghdad, Iraq April 9, 2003. REUTERS/Goran Tomasevic/File Photo
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    FILE PHOTO: A U.S. soldier watches as a statue of Iraq's President Saddam Hussein falls in central Baghdad, Iraq April 9, 2003. REUTERS/Goran Tomasevic/File Photo

  • A portrait of Saddam Hussein still hangs on the burning Ministry of Transport and Communication building in Baghdad Wednesday, April 9, 2003. Thousands went on a looting rampage as U.S. troops moved into the Iraqi capital. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)
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    A portrait of Saddam Hussein still hangs on the burning Ministry of Transport and Communication building in Baghdad Wednesday, April 9, 2003. Thousands went on a looting rampage as U.S. troops moved into the Iraqi capital. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)

  • **FOR USE AS DESIRED WITH IRAQ WAR ANNIVERSARY STORIES **FILE** U.S. Marines with India Co., 3rd Batt., 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division, provides cover fire as other Marines advance on the headquarters of the Fedayeen in Baghdad, in this April 9, 2003 file photo. (AP Photo/FILE/Laura Rauch)
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    **FOR USE AS DESIRED WITH IRAQ WAR ANNIVERSARY STORIES **FILE** U.S. Marines with India Co., 3rd Batt., 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division, provides cover fire as other Marines advance on the headquarters of the Fedayeen in Baghdad, in this April 9, 2003 file photo. (AP Photo/FILE/Laura Rauch)

  • U.S. Marines with India Co., 3rd Batt., 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division, advance on the headquarters of the Fedayeen in Baghdad on Wednesday, April 9, 2003. The Fedayeen are a secret fighting force controled by Saddam Hussein. (AP Photo/Laura Rauch)
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    U.S. Marines with India Co., 3rd Batt., 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division, advance on the headquarters of the Fedayeen in Baghdad on Wednesday, April 9, 2003. The Fedayeen are a secret fighting force controled by Saddam Hussein. (AP Photo/Laura Rauch)

  • FILE - U.S. Army Stf. Sgt. Chad Touchett, center, relaxes with comrades from A Company, 3rd Battalion, 7th Infantry Regiment, after a search of one of Saddam Hussein's bomb-damaged palaces in Baghdad on Monday, April 7, 2003. (AP Photo/John Moore, File)
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    FILE - U.S. Army Stf. Sgt. Chad Touchett, center, relaxes with comrades from A Company, 3rd Battalion, 7th Infantry Regiment, after a search of one of Saddam Hussein's bomb-damaged palaces in Baghdad on Monday, April 7, 2003. (AP Photo/John Moore, File)

  • Iraqi civilians cheer the arrival of the 3rd Battalion, 4th Marines Regiment in downtown Bagdad ,Wednesday, April 9, 2003. Saddam Hussein's government is no longer in control of Baghdad, but coalition forces are planning for resistance in other cities, a U.S. military spokesman said Wednesday. (AP Photo/Laurent Rebours)
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    Iraqi civilians cheer the arrival of the 3rd Battalion, 4th Marines Regiment in downtown Bagdad ,Wednesday, April 9, 2003. Saddam Hussein's government is no longer in control of Baghdad, but coalition forces are planning for resistance in other cities, a U.S. military spokesman said Wednesday. (AP Photo/Laurent Rebours)

  • **CAPTION ADDITION**ADDS THE NAME OF THE MARINE PLACING FLAG**An Iraqi man, right, looks at Cpl. Edward Chin, from New York, of the 3rd Battalion, 4th Marines Regiment, cover the face of a statue of Saddam Hussein with an American flag before toppling the statue in downtown in Bagdhad Wednesday, April 9, 2003. Moments later the American flag was removed. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)
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    **CAPTION ADDITION**ADDS THE NAME OF THE MARINE PLACING FLAG**An Iraqi man, right, looks at Cpl. Edward Chin, from New York, of the 3rd Battalion, 4th Marines Regiment, cover the face of a statue of Saddam Hussein with an American flag before toppling the statue in downtown in Bagdhad Wednesday, April 9, 2003. Moments later the American flag was removed. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)

  • Soldiers from the U.S. Army's 3rd Infantry Division hold up a ripped portrait of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein on a moving armored vehicle in Baghdad April 9, 2003.  U.S. troops pulled down a 20-foot (six meter) high statue of President Saddam Hussein in central Baghdad on Wednesday and Iraqis danced on it in contempt for the man who ruled them with an iron grip for 24 years.   JAPAN OUT  NO ARCHIVES  NO RESALES  REUTERS/Kyodo

OPSE_2003ABR10_GUERRA_CONTRA IRAK_TOMA DE BAGDAD_CELEBRACION_IMAGEN_SADDAM HUSSEIN_DESTRUCCION_SOLDADOS NORTEAMERICANOS
2003ABR10_AFD
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    Soldiers from the U.S. Army's 3rd Infantry Division hold up a ripped portrait of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein on a moving armored vehicle in Baghdad April 9, 2003. U.S. troops pulled down a 20-foot (six meter) high statue of President Saddam Hussein in central Baghdad on Wednesday and Iraqis danced on it in contempt for the man who ruled them with an iron grip for 24 years. JAPAN OUT NO ARCHIVES NO RESALES REUTERS/Kyodo OPSE_2003ABR10_GUERRA_CONTRA IRAK_TOMA DE BAGDAD_CELEBRACION_IMAGEN_SADDAM HUSSEIN_DESTRUCCION_SOLDADOS NORTEAMERICANOS 2003ABR10_AFD

  • A giant statue of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein is brought down by U.S. Marines as people watch the demolition in the Iraqi capital of Baghdad on Wednesday April 9, 2003. Jubilant crowds swarmed into Baghdad's streets Wednesday, dancing, looting and defacing images of Saddam Hussein as U.S. commanders declared that his regime's rule over the capital had ended.  (AP Photo/Kyodo, Koji Harada)
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    A giant statue of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein is brought down by U.S. Marines as people watch the demolition in the Iraqi capital of Baghdad on Wednesday April 9, 2003. Jubilant crowds swarmed into Baghdad's streets Wednesday, dancing, looting and defacing images of Saddam Hussein as U.S. commanders declared that his regime's rule over the capital had ended. (AP Photo/Kyodo, Koji Harada)

  • US marines wave US and Iraqi flags 14 April 2003 in front of al-Faruq Palace in the city of Tikrit, toppled iraqi President Saddam Hussein's hometown, after taking control of most of the city, meeting little resistance.     AFP PHOTO/Joseph BARRAK
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    US marines wave US and Iraqi flags 14 April 2003 in front of al-Faruq Palace in the city of Tikrit, toppled iraqi President Saddam Hussein's hometown, after taking control of most of the city, meeting little resistance. AFP PHOTO/Joseph BARRAK

  • FILE - A U.S. Marine watches a statue of Saddam Hussein being toppled in Firdaus Square in downtown Baghdad on April 9, 2003 file photo. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay, File)
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    FILE - A U.S. Marine watches a statue of Saddam Hussein being toppled in Firdaus Square in downtown Baghdad on April 9, 2003 file photo. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay, File)

  • Iraqi Kurds in Sulaimaniya take to the streets to celebrate as U.S. Marines enter Baghdad on April 9, 2003. U.S. troops swept into the heart of Baghdad to an ecstatic welcome on Wednesday, as Saddam Hussein's 24-year rule crumbled into chaos and looting.   REUTERS/Nikola Solic
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    Iraqi Kurds in Sulaimaniya take to the streets to celebrate as U.S. Marines enter Baghdad on April 9, 2003. U.S. troops swept into the heart of Baghdad to an ecstatic welcome on Wednesday, as Saddam Hussein's 24-year rule crumbled into chaos and looting. REUTERS/Nikola Solic

  • An Iraqi man puts flowers on the head of a U.S Marine in Saddam City in eastern Baghdad April 9, 2003. Iraqis joyously welcomed U.S. Marines driving through eastern Baghdad on Wednesday and looters moved in as the remnants of Saddam Hussein's rule collapsed. Hundreds of jubilant Iraqis cheered, danced, waved and threw flowers as Marines advanced through eastern Baghdad and into the center of Saddam's seat of power.  REUETERS/str
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    An Iraqi man puts flowers on the head of a U.S Marine in Saddam City in eastern Baghdad April 9, 2003. Iraqis joyously welcomed U.S. Marines driving through eastern Baghdad on Wednesday and looters moved in as the remnants of Saddam Hussein's rule collapsed. Hundreds of jubilant Iraqis cheered, danced, waved and threw flowers as Marines advanced through eastern Baghdad and into the center of Saddam's seat of power. REUETERS/str

  • **FOR USE AS DESIRED WITH IRAQ WAR ANNIVERSARY STORIES **FILE** U.S. Army Spc. John Dresel from Oxford, Conn. is kissed by an Iraqi child in Baghdad, in this April 9, 2003 file photo. The soldiers from the A Company 3rd Battalion, 7th Infantry Regiment had taken over a section of northern Baghdad receiving a warm welcome from many residents, but under sporadic rocket and small arms fire. (AP Photo/IFLE/John Moore)
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    **FOR USE AS DESIRED WITH IRAQ WAR ANNIVERSARY STORIES **FILE** U.S. Army Spc. John Dresel from Oxford, Conn. is kissed by an Iraqi child in Baghdad, in this April 9, 2003 file photo. The soldiers from the A Company 3rd Battalion, 7th Infantry Regiment had taken over a section of northern Baghdad receiving a warm welcome from many residents, but under sporadic rocket and small arms fire. (AP Photo/IFLE/John Moore)

Bagdad. Hace 15 años Abú Ali se alegró viendo entrar a los soldados estadounidenses en Bagdad. "El tirano está acabado, Estados Unidos va a ocuparse de nosotros", pensó, imaginándose un futuro radiante sin .

Pero los años sólo le trajeron desgracias y desolación, lamenta este iraquí de 61 años viendo las fotos de sus tres hijos muertos en atentados.

Y es que desde la invasión liderada por Estados Unidos en marzo del 2003 Irak se sumió en la violencia.

A los casi 25 años de dictadura siguieron enfrentamientos interconfesionales, principalmente entre chiitas y sunitas, y ataques yihadistas, con el triste saldo de decenas de miles de muertos.

Las heridas siguen abiertas a falta de una política de reconciliación y de una reactivación económica que podría haber permitido pasar página.

Abu Alí, recuerda, con los ojos llenos de lágrimas, la muerte de sus hijos.

En julio del 2007, su primogénito Alí, de 18 años, vendía sandía en una calle comercial del barrio de Karrada cuando la explosión de un coche bomba lo mató.

Seis años más tarde, sus benjamines Alaa, de 23 años, y Abas, de 17, que habían retomado la venta de sandías, murieron en un atentado. Él que había soñado para sus hijos una juventud más feliz que la suya cómo iba a imaginarse que acabaría visitándolos en el cementerio.

- Desdicha -

"Cada semana visito sus tumbas", cuenta este hombre, tocado con una gorra blanca y vestido con una túnica tradicional beige.

De todas formas -dice- "nadie piensa en el pueblo, los partidos no buscan más que conseguir escaños" en el parlamento.

Antes, recuerda Qais al Sharea, "Sadam Husein era un hombre fuerte, que lo controlaba todo y asustaba a todo el mundo con sus armas químicas". Por las mañanas, Qais al Sharea abría su peluquería en la plaza Al Ferdaus, en el corazón de Bagdad. La inmensa estatua del dictador estaba allí para recordárselo.

El 9 de abril de 2003, prefirió permanecer en casa y ver por televisión cómo los soldados estadounidenses echaban abajo el monumento de bronce.

"Bagdad cayó cuando cayó la estatua", dice, al pie del inmenso terraplén cubierto de escombros mal disimulados bajo pedazos de chapa.

Por aquel entonces, él tenía 27 años y creyó "como todos los jóvenes que pronto tendrían discotecas, restaurantes, que viajarían por todo el mundo".

Mahmud Othman, un kurdo de 65 años en la época, soñaba con un porvenir feliz después de la "pesadilla" de Sadam Husein.

Pero - añade- "los estadounidenses tenían un plan para derrocar a Sadam Husein, ninguno para el post-Sadam".

- "Una catástrofe tras otra" -

Las instituciones del Estado fueron desmanteladas, se lanzó un proceso de "desbaasificación" (nombre del partido Baas de Sadam Husein) y la oposición en el exilio regresó.

El problema es que la antigua oposición al dictador se dividió rápidamente, la corrupción se volvió endémica y las tensiones interconfesionales emergieron, avivadas por las milicias surgidas del vacío creado por el desmantelamiento de las fuerzas de seguridad orquestado por Estados Unidos.

"Pensábamos tener un sistema federal y democrático y tuvimos confesionalismo y chovinismo", acusa Rauf Maaruf, dirigente del partido de oposición kurdo Goran.

Todas las instituciones se vieron afectadas, asegura Abdel Salam al Samer, profesor universitario desde hace 28 años. "Esperábamos que la Enseñanza superior cambiara" después del final del partido Baas.

Unas esperanzas truncadas. La situación de Irak "se deterioró y la de las universidades también", afirma este profesor de 58 años, testigo de cómo las facciones políticas se inmiscuyeron en los temas universitarios y uno de sus colegas murió a manos de milicianos en 2006.

Los que pagaron un precio más alto son los miembros de las numerosas minorías étnicas y religiosas de Irak, según los representantes de estas comunidades.

"Nuestro país vivió una catástrofe tras otra desde hace 15 años", lamenta el patriarca católico caldeo Louis Raphaël Sako, cuya comunidad quedó reducida casi a la nada.

Además, resume Sharea, desde hace 15 años, Irak da "un paso hacia adelante y cinco hacia atrás".

Fuente: AFP