Babylon & Beyond

Observations from Iraq, Iran,
Israel, the Arab world and beyond

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IRAQ: With a heart; update

January 27, 2008 |  7:20 am

The 2-year-old Iraqi girl flown last week to the U.S. for possible life-saving heart surgery thanks to the efforts of Marines is now undergoing tests at Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt Medical Center in Nashville.

But pediatric heart specialists said Saturday that Amenah Ala Thabit's condition is more serious than initially thought. Her heart is backward in her chest, constricting her breathing, doctors said. She also has a serious infection

The Marines of the 3rd battalion, 23rd regiment, Regional Combat Team Five met the girl and her family while on patrol in Haditha. After raising $30,000 for the trip, the Marines sent Amenah — earlier reports put her name as Amina — to the U.S. for treatment, accompanied by her mother.

— Tony Perry in Al Asad, Iraq