Youssif, a burned Iraqi child whose plight has touched the heart of Americans, met his hero Spider-man at Universal Studios yesterday:

Other superheroes crowded around to get a closer look. Even the Green Goblin stopped his villainous ways to tell the boy hi. Youssif remained unfazed. He didn’t take a liking to Spider-Man’s nemesis.

Spidey was just too cool.

“It was my favorite thing,” the boy said later. “I want to see him again.”

He then felt compelled to add: “I know it’s not the real Spider-Man.”

5-year-old Youssif, who was doused with gasoline and set on fire by thugs, came to America to get medical attention and escape the turmoil of Baghdad:

They described a life of utter chaos in Baghdad. Neighbors had recently given birth to a baby girl. Shortly afterward, the father was kidnapped and killed. Then, there was the time when some girls wore tanktops and jeans. They were snatched off the street by gunmen.

Art.Spidey.CnnThe stories can be even more gruesome. The couple said they had heard reports that a young girl was kidnapped and beheaded –and her killers sewed a dog’s head on the corpse and delivered it to her family’s doorstep.

“These are just some of the stories,” said Youssif’s mother, Zainab.

Under Saddam Hussein, there was more security and stability, they said. There was running water and electricity most of the time. But still life was tough under the dictator, like the time when Zainab’s uncle disappeared and was never heard from again after he read a “religious book,” she said.


  1. …and that’s why we have to stick around and help these people. We take for granted how lucky we are to live in the good old US of A, and some of us even bitch loudly about the place. A lot of people don’t seem to care that there are good Iraqi people, who are dying in far greater numbers then our solders (brave heroes, God bless them) because (right or wrong) we started this war. Most of them have no way of sticking up for themselves, while their children are being brainwashed by the hundreds, every day. If you think I’m wrong, try this. Find a photo of some horrible act, played out on someone, by terrorist, and tape the face (or use photoshop) of someone you love, over the head of the victim (if they still have a head) and see how you feel about it then. If that still doesn’t tell you anything, try your own. Hey, I’d love to live in a world of piece, but the people who set fire to poor Youssif seem to have other plans, and I didn’t see Spidey there to stop them.

  2. Maybe if we just bring all of the good Iraqis over here, then we can leave. I would have no problem giving them the state of Oklahoma.