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Unlikely Americans: Iraqi refugees 10 years later

Today marks the tenth anniversary of the U.S. invasion of Iraq. In the past decade, we have heard from people with varying perspectives on the war: politicians for and against it; anti-war activists; foreign governments; and the United Nations – and we’ve heard the stories of military veterans coming home.

But the story of the Iraq war is not complete without the stories of the people most affected by it: the Iraqi people. 

As of January 2012, the total number of Iraqi people displaced since the U.S. invasion and the war that followed is around three million people, two million of them refugees. That's according to the U.N. High Commission for Refugees. They ended up dispersed in many places – mostly in neighboring countries like Syria, Jordan, and Turkey. But many have been repatriated in Europe, Canada, and the U.S. California hosts the largest number  of Iraqi refugees in the country.

Today we’ll also talk with allies of Iraqi refugees, who’ve helped them navigate the process of making a new life in California, while also helping them document their harrowing accounts of the war and its aftermath.

Click the audio player above to listen to the complete episode.

Hana Baba is host of Crosscurrents, KALW's weeknight newsmagazine that broadcasts on KALW Public Radio in the San Francisco Bay Area.