After a 20-year absence, Aseel Albanna returned to her native Iraq and found a very different country. Here, she poses with the statue of King Shahryar, a character in <em>The Thousand and One Nights</em>, near the Tigris River in Baghdad. The area used to be extremely popular, but many of the fish restaurants that once lined the streets have been torn down.
Credit Sean Carberry / NPR
In September 1991, Aseel Albanna was about to finish her last year of architecture school in Baghdad. Wanting a break from the years of war and hardship, she took a trip to the U.S. But a planned four-week visit turned into a 20-year stay.
Family members in Kentucky arranged for her to complete her architecture degree at the University of Kentucky. She then lived and worked in Louisville until she moved to Washington, D.C., in 2005.
Former Vice President Dick Cheney. (Feb. 10, 2011, file photo.)
Credit Alex Brandon / AP
We've been keeping up with reaction to former Vice President Dick Cheney's new memoir, In My Time. In it, the vice president has made some extraordinary claims, including that he was in charge during Sept. 11 and saying that he still supports water boarding as way to get detainees to talk.
A school founded by Americans in Iraq before the Saddam Hussein era is an emblem of a time when the United States was known in the Middle East not for military action, but for culture and education. That's the view of Puliter Prize-winning New York Times correspondent Anthony Shadid, who recently wrote an essay about the school, titled "The American Age, Iraq."
"Critics here at home" argue that the war in Iraq has hurt the reputation of the United States around the world, former Vice President Dick Cheney acknowledged this morning. But he doesn't believe that's true.