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Al-Sadr: Only A Select Few Should Fight US

From his deeply smitten fans at Reuters:

Iraq’s Sadr says only select few should fight U.S.

KUFA, Iraq (Reuters) – Anti-American Shi’ite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr said on Friday that only a select group of his Mehdi Army should fight U.S. forces in Iraq, in an apparent attempt to assert his authority over the militia.

Sadr said a limited number of Mehdi Army members would be authorized to battle American forces, while most of his supporters should work against Western cultural, social and religious domination.

"The weapons will be in their hands exclusively and they must only use them against the occupier and not against others," he said in a statement read by a cleric during Friday prayers in the southern town of Kufa.

Sadr agreed to a ceasefire after Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki mounted a security crackdown on his militiamen in Basra in March. A similar ceasefire was reached in Baghdad after violence erupted there following the Basra offensive.

Persistent attacks against Iraqi security forces have raised questions over Sadr’s control over Shi’ite militias.

The U.S. military say rogue elements of the Mehdi Army have not obeyed Sadr and continued launching attacks. It says these so-called "special groups" receive training and funding from neighboring Iran, a charge Tehran denies.

One presumes that Mr. al-Sadr, who is still hiding in Iran, will not be one of these "select few."

Women and children first!

This article was posted by Steve on Friday, June 13th, 2008. Comments are currently closed.

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