BREAKFAST WITH AN IRAQI AND A NORTH KOREAN
Brunch at a small Eastside NYC diner turned out to be anything but the run of the mill affair. Sitting nearby was a cooing young couple. Somehow we started talking. He is a doctor from Iraq and she a social worker from South Korea. When he found out that I was from Israel, he told me that he has many Israeli friends from his training days in London."I had a chance to do a year of internship in Haddasa but I worried about my family in Baghdad. Once I get my American citizenship I would really like to go"."What do you hear from your family in Iraq?""Its getting better.""Are you a Sunni or Shia?" I asked."Hashemite," he said and proceeded to explain to me that the Hashemites have always gotten along with the Shia. No, he did not want a return to the 1923 constitution. It is not democratic enough. Once the decision for election is made. Young Iraqi leaders will appear. They are quite because they like living.
I asked his girl friend about South Korea. She would like a peaceful slow unification. Her parents, originally from North Korea, are much more militant.
"That's because they know what its like to live under tyrants", her Iraqi boyfriend said. I could not agree more. The greatest divide is between persons who have never suffered real adversity and persons who did.
I wished the couple luck. They will need it. Both families are virulently opposed to their marriage.
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