Well… Perhaps not… Read the Updates at end of article.
It now seems that there is evidence that the 260 terrorists of a messianic Shiite cult who were killed by a combined force of Iraqi Army and U.S. forces on January 29 were not what we were told.
Abid Ali, who witnessed the Najaf fighting, said a procession of about 200 pilgrims from the Hawatim tribe had arrived in the Zarqa area near Najaf to celebrate the Ashura festival. After a confrontation over the procession, Iraqi soldiers at a checkpoint shot dead Hajj Sa’ad Sa’ad Nayif al-Hatemi, chief of the tribe, as he and his wife sat in their car. Members of the tribe then attacked the checkpoint to avenge the death of their chief.
“It was after this that the Iraqi army called in the Americans, and the planes began bombing civilians,” Ali said. “It was a massacre. Now I believe internal Shi’ite fighting has entered a very dangerous phase.”
Ali said most people in the area believe the US military was told by Iraqi security forces loyal to the pro-Iranian government in Baghdad that “terrorists” or the “messianic cult” were attacking Najaf. They say the misinformation was intended to mislead occupation forces into attacking the tribe. (source)
If this is true, this is embarrassing to the U.S. and a great tragedy! The least bad way forward is to conduct a thorough and quick investigation, offer apologies to the survivors, promise to do better, and extract severe consequences for the Iran-allied Iraqi government forces who caused it.
If it is true.
A letter was delivered by Tehran’s chief nuclear negotiator to the Saudi King from Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, a Saudi official said on Monday. The official said Iran wanted Saudi leaders to relay a goodwill message to Washington.
That is so nice of them. What could have made Iran change tactics?
U.S. forces are holding five Iranians after raiding an Iranian government office in Arbil last week — the second such operation in recent weeks.
President Bush has ordered more U.S. troops to Iraq, ignoring recommendations by a U.S. study group calling on Washington to deal directly with Syria and Iran, with whom it broke off ties in 1979, to help rein in violence in Iraq.
The Iranian Quds Force spies captured in Arbil by U.S. forces last week must be important. The U.S. must hold on to them and exploit them for intelligence gathering, and capture and interrogate more. Iran has been playing both sides in Iraq against the middle, supporting both the Shi’ite extremist and the Al Qaeda Sunni extremist sides against the democratic middle of the country, and making things so terrifying that ordinary people come to believe that their country will never know peace unless a strongman takes control.
Iran is the terrorist puppet master in Iraq. The U.S. must continue to make Iran suffer for that.
Remember. No submission. No hudna. No weakness in the face of evil.
Technorati Tags: iran, iraq, jihad, counterjihad, saudi arabia
The BBC Has It:
I would like to thank many people. My doctors, nurses and hospital staff who are doing all they can for me, the British police who are pursuing my case with vigour and professionalism and are watching over me and my family.
I would like to thank the British government for taking me under their care. I am honoured to be a British citizen.
I would like to thank the British public for their messages of support and for the interest they have shown in my plight.
I thank my wife Marina, who has stood by me. My love for her and our son knows no bounds.
But as I lie here I can distinctly hear the beating of wings of the angel of death.
I may be able to give him the slip but I have to say my legs do not run as fast as I would like.
I think, therefore, that this may be the time to say one or two things to the person responsible for my present condition.
You may succeed in silencing me but that silence comes at a price. You have shown yourself to be as barbaric and ruthless as your most hostile critics have claimed.
You have shown yourself to have no respect for life, liberty or any civilised value.
You have shown yourself to be unworthy of your office, to be unworthy of the trust of civilised men and women.
You may succeed in silencing one man but the howl of protest from around the world will reverberate, Mr Putin, in your ears for the rest of your life.
May God forgive you for what you have done, not only to me but to beloved Russia and its people.
21 November 2006
Technorati Tags: litvinenko, putin, soviet, russia, polonium