The Shiite militia, known as the Mahdi Army/Militia, run by anti-American Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, seized total control of the southern Iraqi city of Amarah. Hundreds, if not thousands of black-clad heavily-armed militia invaded the city in one of the boldest acts of defiance yet by one of the country's powerful, unofficial armies, according to the Associated Press.The report also stated that, " Mahdi Army fighters stormed three main police stations Friday morning, ... planting explosives that flattened the buildings in Amarah, a city just 30 miles from the Iranian border that was under British command until August, when it was returned to Iraqi government control."
According to the AP, Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki dispatched an emergency security delegation that included the Minister of State for Security Affairs and top officials from the Interior and Defense ministries. Just great! Both of these ministries have been infiltrated by the Mahdi, and al-Maliki announced last week that he MIGHT approach the militias about disbanding after the first of the year. Mind boggling, indeed!
In that post about parallel governments in Iraq, I wrote further, ". . . many consider Al-Sadr the most dangerous man in Iraq. However, I doubt that he would defane Ramadan, the holy month of Islam, like the terrorists are doing, as they are nothing but hooligans and criminals."
Today, 20 October 2006, this year's Ramadan observance is about to close. Was I ever wrong in that statement made in October 2003. Defane Ramadan? He just did.
However, even before that post, I also posted three years ago,13 October 2003, "The Biggest Threat to Iraqi Stability -- The Parallel Government of Moqtada Al-Sadr". I wrote about the cleric, "He's the son of a cleric who was murdered by Saddam. He has strong ties to the extreme ruling government in Iran. The American Press is walking very light on this with only slight mentions about this cleric, but he is probably more scary than even Saddam himself, especially to the moderate citizens of Iraq."
Al-Sadr should have been taken out three years ago. Today's action by the militia proves that Al-Sadr is not a cleric to be revered by the Shia in Iraq. He is a common criminal who should have been arrested, jailed and/or deported three years ago. Now, he MUST BE ARRESTED, and tried on war crimes. In my opinion, he is no better, and far more dangerous, than Saddam ever was.
Will the Bush Bunch do it? I sincerely doubt it. They talk and spin propaganda, but they have no balls!
UPDATE! 21 October: Yesterday, members of the Iraqi Army stepped up to the plate and routed the hoodlums from Amara as British forces stood by. That's exactly the way it should be. However, the militias still must go and as soon as possible!