On the first day for me in Norway were two types of emotions I lived: the first is the horror that affected me by what came to be not separate from the misfortunes of all Iraqis: wars, displacement, violence, and the second was the image of Norway as a country that respects human rights and home to many of those who seek help, which I knew by our national immigrants and refugees, arrived to this country far from their homeland.
The first test is when I applied for asylum, when the officer showed an aggressive behavior against me even without dealing with my well documented story, and the result was an increase in the horror I was carrying. Honestly the officer later tried to apologize for it, but the situation has changed in the second interview to escalate the feelings of hope again, and the picture of Norway as a country home of humanitarian aid to those really need was bright again in my eyes, far away from waves of fear and horror.
The first step for me in the refugee camp let the story more complicated, on the one hand the situation of refugees and their stories and cases, and the other hand, the way authorities are treating them, sometimes to deal with refugees as numbers and not to look at their humanity situation, different from each other, the administration in temporary camp was insisted me to share a house with a woman suffering of abnormal, mental, and psychological behavior, she showed an act of aggression against me, and did not hesitate to threaten me and I my daughter, and instead of finding a solution even temporary one, and providing a separate room to live with my, they were found a strange solution: to share a small narrow room with another woman. Even I was sleep on the ground in an environment lacking of any humanitarian atmosphere, where there was shared bathroom, with and total alienation of the place I shared in with people not of my original country, not speak my language, and their culture is not mine.
Here I do not want to concentrate on my personal story, even though it was included things worth perusing, such as the high cost of health and treatment, but I want to stop at the main point which is the somewhat ambiguous relationship between the refugee and his new country with its administrative measures and their cultural and behavioral patterns.
There are refugees I knew them, and some of my original country, recognize the successes they achieved in Norway, and their relationship with the new society and its institutions are characterized by vitality and positive influence, while I found others hold Norwegian citizenship, but not to know the Norwegian language and culture, not even its laws, its constitution and its policy, but more dangerous than this there are those who know only specific things in his behavior with Norwegian institutions: How he can deceive those institutions and lying down in a way to earn more without paying anything, someone claims he is suffering chronic physical or psychological disorder until he gets to retire, or that the riding public buses without paying the price of the ticket, he tells that as kind of pride, and calls for new immigrants to do the same! Or they are deceiving the authorities by saying they have changed their religion (Islam, mostly) to another one (Christianity mostly) in order to obtain residence, under the pretext of having new religion, in which they cannot return to their country of origin, because the penalties of changing religion threatening his life?
The other hand I got to know is the behavior of Norwegian native citizens, which seems the resentment of the refugee and for no reason sometimes, I know that we are humans and not angels, but I was surprised, for example, the strange act of Norwegian mature lady living near by the camp I was lived in, when I took my daughter in a walk to the near farm showing her the animals in it, so she went out to us, angry with her dog, and ordered us to stay away while my daughter was so happy with the sight of cows and horses on the farm. What drives that lady to show that act? I cannot really expect that the only reason is stereotype of us as refugees!
In the same context, I will tell here another story that my daughter and I lived in a supermarket:
My daughter: Mama I’m hungry and I want to eat this piece of chocolate.
I: take it but let me keep the cover to use it to pay the price.
Young lady as a seller with angry voice (after I give her the cover): Why the cover removed from the piece of chocolate? This is forbidden.
I: This is a child and felt hungry and I kept the cover to pay the price, what’s wrong with that?
Seller: many have acted this way in order to avoid paying the price.
I (after paying the vendor fifty Kroner): This is for my daughter’s chocolate, and the rest is by the name of many did not pay as you say.
After that I turned out while she continued saying words I did not to hear.
2 stories I told about native Norwegians citizens, and two examples I mentioned for the conduct of refugees reflect all of what it described as ambiguous position in relation to the 2 parties, and I think it requires a cultural act from both parties:
It is unbelievable to grant Norwegian citizenship to the people who do not know neither the language of their new country nor its culture, and constitution, recognizing their right to retain their culture of origin and religious behavior, but according to perfect harmony with the Constitution must be respected. Also it is un logic to give the nationality of a democratic country committed to human rights and tolerance, to immigrants do not hesitate to support violence and even those who promote ideas that produce terrorist attacks such as bombing works by Muslims in several regions in the world, some of whom are citizens of European countries. There must be a fair balance I see it: giving the rights granted to Norwegian citizens must be balanced with the total commitment of political and constitutional culture based on commitment to democracy and respect for human rights and ensuring freedom of expression. And there must be a real test in understanding of the Norwegian Constitution and democratic construction, and pass the real test is who would be qualified to carry the nationality of the country, including the real means to participate in the process of integration.
The other party, Refugee to this country is responsible also: it is not reasonable to migrate here away from fear of persecution and injustice and the absence of justice and rights, then exercise later, forms of abuses, including dedicated calls isolation, racism and incitement to hatred and even violence. Here the immigrant re-produces the same unfair situation, which he left his original country because, and tries to build it again in his own thoughts and behavior in the country?
- Academic researcher