Than New York Times printed a Very Interesting Article about the cease-fire between occupation forces and the militia of Moktada al-Sadr, the 31-year-old radical cleric
Apparently in spite of this cease file – American troops attacked a police station where there was heavy fighting. At some point they were passing out flyers containing two different excuses on why Moktada al-Sadr was killed in fighting. But – Moktada al-Sadr was not killed at all. They already had the flyers printed with the excuse before the planned killing but the killing never happened and someone screwed up and passed out the excuse anyhow.
The only thing I hate worse than liars is bad liars. BushCo needs to get his lying right. Here’s the story:
Iraqi officials have said the Americans were persuaded to compromise with Mr. Sadr last week by Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, Iraq’s most influential cleric. Ayatollah Sistani lives close to the Shrine of Ali, and he had been growing increasingly concerned over the battles near that shrine and two other shrines in Karbala. On May 21, days after residents of Karbala protested in the streets at the urging of Ayatollah Sistani, American forces and insurgents withdrew from the city’s center.
The cease-fire reached in Najaf on Thursday did not require Mr. Sadr to disband his militia or to submit to an arrest warrant that an Iraqi judge had issued in connection with the killing in April of Abdul Majid al-Khoei, an American-backed cleric who had returned from exile to Najaf.
Meanwhile on Sunday, people in the streets of Najaf were handed mysterious fliers with Mr. Sadr’s picture that said “Moktada (al Sadr) was followed by the Iraqi police for his ties to the slaying of Khoei, and due to violent actions he was killed during an attempt to arrest him.”
Another flier had a photo of Iraqi policemen and the words “The Justice Ministry tried to arrest Mr. Sadr, but he and his followers resisted fiercely, which drove the Iraqi police to defend themselves.”
The fliers appeared to have been made by Iraq’s Justice Ministry or its allies to be handed out in case Iraqi policemen killed Mr. Sadr. Somehow, they were distributed prematurely. There were no reports of Mr. Sadr’s death.
Mr. Sadr’s office also issued a conciliatory statement to Sadr al-Din al-Kubanchi, a prominent cleric linked to the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq, or Sciri, an influential Shiite party. On Friday, gunmen shot at Mr. Kubanchi outside the Shrine of Ali, but he was unhurt. Members of Mr. Sadr’s militia captured one of the attackers, but did not turn him over to the Badr Organization, Sciri’s armed wing.
That led Sciri officials to accuse Mr. Sadr and his militia of organizing the attack and then trying to cover it up. Mr. Kubanchi has denounced both Mr. Sadr and the occupation forces in recent sermons.
In his statement, Mr. Sadr denied any role in the attack. “I send my greetings and my willingness to meet you and my brothers in Sciri and the Badr Organization,” he said. “You can hold your weekly Friday Prayer, and I am ready to attend it hand in hand with you to ensure your safety.”