Ahmed came to the Emirates five years ago. In Iraq there was no future for him. There is still no future for him there. He tells of his childhood years in Baghdad and of the night in January 1991 when he cowered with his parents and brothers and sisters under the cellar steps whilst the bombs fell outside. We met Ahmed in the disco "Tangerine”. He wanted to be photographed at the foot of the Emirates Towers. There he works on the 26th floor.
My name is Ahmed Amin. I was born in 1974 in Bagdad. I am doing now graphic design work. Its for me now four years in Dubai. I found it such a nice place. The quick developments. The city is growing so fast. As an Arabic man I am so happy for this, because it became one of the good exemples in the Middle East.
Well the West……the West is a kind of already developed countries they are so educated people they have the long horizon look. They have all kind of technologies and they are so open minded people but there are some - lets say negatives - about the West. And these negatives I have just touched them here in Dubai because here as I said it’s a very global city and we are here talking about 166 nationalities and most of them are from the West. Myself as an Arab guy and especially because I am from Iraq and especially after September the 11th for what happended in the States. The look from the West to the East has changed. Maybe even some of them think, that the Arab people still riding the camels, living in the tents. They miss so many things about our culture. How we think and how we believe. Even sometimes they just don’t belive that we are even more open minded then them and even more educated than them.
I prefer, how do we say, we will have some kind of meetings with them and to share our views and opinions with them to let them know that we are also educated and that there are even some people will be so interested to know about other places even more than them. I believe that people from the West they are allways interested to get to know new places like to visit some ancient cities like Babylon in my country. But we do also want to dicover the West. Myself I was so interested in visiting some interesting places in Europe. Like Italy and Spain and I believe there are some interesting palaces in Austria. I myself, I even sometimes listen to operas. This is perhaps a thing that the Westerners will not believe that the Arabs will do that. I will also like to ask them to taste our kind of music. The Iraqi Makam, well it’s something similar to the opera in the West. I believe they will like it.
I believe if I could get a friend or let’s say a girlfriend from the West…. Because I believe I can understand the way they feel and they think and this could be a good chance for me to learn how they deal with life and the needs. So I just give my hand to shake it with Western ladies because I just want to break their way of thinking that Arabs are not good at this and don’t do this and so on. It happens with me that I met one lady and we danced and she was dancing very nice and so …. shall I? …. she was so pretty I danced with her and she liked the way I danced as well and than we finishd dancing and we got a drink and she asked me: "Where are you from?” and I said: ”Well, Guess!” And she said: "You look like an Arabic!” and I said: "Yes.” And she gave me from here or from Jordan but I said: "No. I am from Iraq!” And then she just changed and I was so chocked from her reaction but this did not bring me down because I will always continue to have a relationship or friendship and I invite people to come to know about my country and to know about my religion and I want to show them also that I have some kind of flexibility.