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Interview with Ali

HBO

When you were first approached with the idea of videotaping your life in Baghdad, what were your feelings?

Ali

Well, it was exciting because it was something new for me. It was really fun. And having my friends with me, it was something fun that we could do together. I also felt a responsibility because there are a lot of people who don't know anything about life in Iraq.

I have lots of friends from different religions & it doesn't matter, because we are all humans, we are all Iraqis, so we have to be united.

HBO

You and your friends in the film all come from different religious backgrounds, but it doesn't seem like there are differences between you.

Ali

That's because for many years there was no difference between people in Iraq. The conflicts are political, and that's what makes for differences. I have lots of friends from different religions and it doesn't matter, because we are all humans, we are all Iraqis, so we have to be united.

HBO

What kind of similarities and differences do you see between yourself and American kids your age?

Ali

I see a lot of similarities, because we all have the same interests, we all listen to the same music, watch the same movies, because we are human. And the internet makes it more similar between the east and west.

They called Baghdad 'Peace City' but now it's the most dangerous city in the world. So I hope that it's going to be Peace City again.

HBO

Now that you and your family are living in the U.S., what are your plans for the future?

Ali

I would like to be an engineer, because you have to be artistic to be an engineer, so that's part of it. I've been painting since I was a little child. So, it's like a habit for me.

HBO

Is there anything you'd like to say to the people who will be watching this film about who you are, where you've been, and what you hope for the future?

Ali

They called Baghdad "Peace City" but now it's the most dangerous city in the world. So I hope that it's going to be Peace City again.

Baghdad High

2008 Documentary Films Series