Sunday, August 28, 2011

Feeding an army

Saturday, August 27th, 2011 | 27th Ramadan

A few days ago while my husband and my son Yusef were out and about they came across a group of opposition fighters from Misrata. It turned out that one of them was a friend of one of my husband’s cousins. Libya after all is a small world and if you sit down to talk to someone for any length of time you will usually find some kind of connection. They chatted for a bit and then everyone went their separate ways.

Quite by chance they met up again the following day. Yusef ended up spending the day with the group. To say that he was thrilled is an understatement. He’s joined them and is off on an adventure.  Actually he is unofficially part of their group; he hasn’t registered to be a fighter because he is underage. He’s unarmed and tags along as kind of a gopher, no matter, it’s certainly just as dangerous and he is delighted and honored to be a part of the liberation of Libya.

What are my feelings about this? Hmmm…. It’s easy to say boys will be boys. On the one hand I am proud of my son. He is eager to free Libya in any way he can. On the other hand I am terrified that he could be injured – or worse. When he’s out I try to keep in contact with him but the phone coverage is miserable and I can’t always get through to him. I also am doing my best to convince myself that most of the fighting is over in Tripoli thus making Yusef’s new role a safer one. And Yusef comes home to sleep.

Last night, after spending the entire evening trying in vain to get a phone call through to Yusef, the phone rang. It was nearly three o’clock in the morning and it was Yusef. ‘Mom! I’m almost home. I’m bringing the guys! Cook us something!’ he said excitedly. ‘How many are coming with you?’ I asked. ‘Just six’ he replied as the phone disconnected.

I went in the bedroom to wake my husband up to tell him the news, then headed for the kitchen to cook up a large pot of ‘Macrona Umbakbaka’ a spicy Libyan pasta dish flavoured with tomatoes, jalapeno peppers, fresh basil and big chunks of beef jerky. My husband went out to the grape vines and picked enough grapes to fill a huge bowl, and we made sure there was plenty of ice cold water and juice to drink.

Our dogs began to bark, announcing the arrival of our special guests who pulled their heavily armored vehicle into the farm and drove it all the way into the far corner. They refused to come anywhere near the house, preferring to stay outside in the dark field under the starlit sky. ‘We’ve been outside for five months’ they said. ‘We are used to it this way.’

They ate and rested a bit. Soon it was dawn and time for them to move off, and for Yusef to head to bed for some much needed sleep. It was certainly an honor to feed the freedom fighters. May God watch over them and keep them safe.


  1. Hi
    Happy for you and hope you get a democratic and free Libya soon
    Greeting from Sweden

  2. Amazing. Hope things will stay better now. It is interesting to read a blog from someone inside. I do not know you but wondered for months how you and family etc would be. Be safe. Thinking of you and your fellow countrypeople. How have the last 6 months been?


  3. I'm so glad you're safe and back online. Reading about personal experiences in Libya is much more helpful than news reports. Thanks, and congratulations to Free Libya!

  4. You are blessed to have a thwaar in your family! May Allah protect him and all the others who fight against the Gaddafi regime. Congratulations for the victory, mashallah Libya, mashallah.

  5. Khadijateri it is wonderful to hear from you. Maybe this time we will finally meet in Tripoli :)
    hugs xoxoxo

  6. Khadija, I feel so privileged to be able to read about these events from a personal perspective from someone who's right there. I think yours is one of the best blogs of any kind that I have ever read, and that is no exaggeration. Hope you and your family will stay safe and free. God bless you.

  7. Great to hear you & your family are safe & well.
    Amazing post, you've contributed to the fight for freedom :-)

  8. Nothing strange comes from a lady like Kadija Teri , proud to have in Libya , despite the troubled days in Tripoli you had the courage to stand strong in the capital Tripoli, God bless you and your family
    Eid Mubarak

  9. Wow! I don't know how you can handle it. I would be a nervous wreck! I am so happy to see you posting again! I have been thinking about you over the past few months! May God keep your family safe!

  10. Elhamdullilla Teri,

    I'm so happy you and your family are safe. May your children live in a better country Inshalla.

    Take care, I'll keep following you as usual


  11. I am so relieved and thankful that you and your family are all right. At least once a week I checked this site to see if you'd updated.

    Sending prayers for your son and whole family. Eid Mubarak!

  12. I'm more than happy to read something from you on this blog. I wish all the best to Yusef. It's probably a very important experience in his life. Even if his mother ...
    Please, explain us what happened these last 5 long months

    Brigitte, from France

  13. Khadija,

    Thanks for sharing this beautiful story. Gosh Yusef is such a brave boy although he wasn't directly involved in the war etc.

    Eid Mubarak


  14. I have thoroughly enjoyed reading your blogs which give an intimate portrayal of a nice family trying to live normally in a war zone with frankness and honesty.
    I'm now looking forward to reading how your family life improves with the advent of freedom from that intolerable dictator.
    Well done and thank you.
    My best wishes to you and your family.
    Steve in England.

  15. Your blog is great, infact awesome. had a good read.


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