My name is Sabah Hassan Goma, I am 27 and fourth year physics student at Al
Mustansiriyah University in Baghdad where I am my departments representative in the student union. I live in Sadr City.

Whenever I arrive at university I still feel pain seeing the place and will never forget the attack.

It was home time for students and the cars were waiting outside for the students.
At the moment just after the explosion it was black storm, I lost conscious for 3 to 4 minutes. After that, I saw naked students running, injured inside and outside the University.

The explosion was so strong that I even found the car that used to take students home was actually inside the campus.

I will never forget during my lifetime, some students were taking off their clothes to cover the bodies of the female students, whose clothes were taken off due to the strong explosion.

We were able to gather the injured in one place till ambulances arrive, then we collected the victims at that place, which we now treat as a holy place inside the university.
I cannot forget my friends who died on that day. One of them was Amgad, who died only a week before his wedding day.

We have asked both the ministry for higher education and the university authorities to organize a proper memorial for the students.

It was not the first time we were attacked. Four years ago five people were killed and since then the student union has taken upon itself to address all the issues of concern to students.

Psychological effect
The bad security situation in the country has prevented the students from coming back and forth to the university and has also affected them psychologically and affected their educational level.

I often students in a dilemma and badly affected because they cannot understand what is going on around them.

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Often they find it hard to attend classes because they are forced to work and study at the same time.

Whereas students at universities in the north of Iraq often have funds available and security, it is different in Baghdad.

We regularly hold seminars where students can discuss their problems and for many the university allows them to escape the daily reality outside.

We regularly face harassment from the US soldiers here who still surround the university and from time to time they search the campus.

We have requested the government stop such actions especially given that the al Mustansiriyah University has suffered a lot already including a lot of attacks, explosions, and kidnapping of some students.

Iraq’s universities represent a small Iraq. There are Shia students, Sunnis, Kurds, and Christians. The attacks on these universities, especially al Mustansiriyah, is an attempt to destroy that small Iraq.

Among the victims were Shias, Sunnis, Kurds and Christians, that tells you that terrorism does not distinguish between groups.

The attackers target scientific cadres, intellectuals, they just do not want the country to develop and so targets the students who is the pillar of the society.
Optimism is still there and I see it on every Iraqi face, despite all the difficulties, misery and aggression that has affected everyone.
But frankly the current educational level is so low and that is due to many wars in Iraq. There are qualified people, we cannot deny that, but the majority are low because of wars.

Source: Al Jazeera