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AP Cites An Al Qaeda Group As Moral Authority

From the DNC’s Associated Press:

Black smoke billows from the site where a suicide car bomb that exploded in a busy market in Baghdad’s poor Sadr City neighborhood. At least 66 people have been killed by a car bomb in a busy Baghdad market in a Shiite neighbourhood despite a massive security crackdown in the Iraqi capital.

Muslim group condemns reports of U.S. rape

By BASSEM MROUE, Associated Press Writer

An influential Sunni organization in Iraq said Sunday that allegations U.S. soldiers raped an Iraqi woman, then killed her and her family were "a sign of shame to the American invaders."

U.S. officials have said a group of American soldiers entered the home of a Sunni family in the insurgent-ridden town of Mahmoudiya, south of Baghdad, raped and killed the woman, then set fire to her body and killed three of her family members in an apparent cover-up attempt.

The Sunni Association of Muslim Scholars condemned the alleged crimes and said "raping this girl then mutilating her is shameful and will remain as a sign of shame to American invaders."

The allegations threaten to stoke public anger in the wake of a series of other cases of U.S. troops accused of killing and abusing Iraqi civilians, although Iraqi media have so far paid little attention to the case.

The U.S. military has stressed it is taking the allegations seriously and a criminal investigation has been launched to determine who should stand trial.

"We can’t undo anything that has happened, but we can and will hold accountable anybody found guilty of offenses," military spokesman Lt. Col. Barry Johnson said in an e-mail.

"Before that happens, we must be given time to conduct a thorough investigation into the facts of what occurred," he said. "The rule of law will prevail in this incident."

Iraq is a conservative, strongly religious society where many women are sheltered from contacts with males who are not family members.

"The mean behavior and terrible violations committed by the invaders show the truth of the ugly American face and shows that their claims of supporting humanity and liberation are false," said the Sunni association, a strong critic of U.S.-led efforts in Iraq.

"We call the world and all humanitarian organizations as witnesses to this ugly crime and urge them to face the American recklessness that went way too far," it added.

U.S. officials investigating the case said they knew of the deaths but thought the victims died as a result of sectarian violence. A local police official, Capt. Ihsan Abdul-Rahman, said Iraqi officials received a report March 13 alleging that American soldiers had killed the family in the Khasir Abyad district about 6 miles north of Mahmoudiya.

Funny that the Associated Press couldn’t be bothered to tell us exactly who the Association of Muslim Scholars are.

But even Wikipedia knows:

Association of Muslim Scholars

The Association of Muslim Scholars (Arabic: هيئة العلماء المسلمين Hayat Al-Ulama Al-Muslimin) also sometimes called Association of Muslim Clerics or Muslim Scholars Association), is a group of Sunni Muslim religious leaders in Iraq. The Association has strong links with Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, and represents the political face of Al-Qaeda in Iraq.

They did not recognize the U.S. appointed government as legitimate and have questioned any democratically elected government. They have previously asked for withdrawal of American troops, who they accuse of causing the deaths of over 30 000 Iraqis since the war began. They support armed resistance against U.S. soldiers, and support beheadings, taking hostages and the killing of civilians (sometimes publicly)

But I guess the AP felt its readers don’t need to know such minor details.

And speaking of details:

U.S. officials have said a group of American soldiers entered the home of a Sunni family in the insurgent-ridden town of Mahmoudiya, south of Baghdad, raped and killed the woman, then set fire to her body and killed three of her family members in an apparent cover-up attempt.

I wonder if the AP can supply a citation for their claim that US officials have said this happened.

(Of course I kid.)

This article was posted by Steve on Sunday, July 2nd, 2006. Comments are currently closed.

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