May 4, 2007


The man who might save Iraq (Pepe Escobar, 5/05/07, Asia Times)

He is a former Sunni Arab mujahid from Ramadi who until recently was fighting the US occupation. He has only a secondary education and is married with two wives. Now he is praised even by urban, secular, highly educated Shi'ites as a "conscious man", or "the kind of man we need now in Iraq". Sheikh Abdul Satter Abu Risha is the leader of the Anbar Sovereignty Council, a powerful coalition of Anbar tribes, including at least 200 sheikhs, that is fighting the Salafi jihadis of al-Qaeda in Iraq/the Islamic Emirate of Iraq in the volatile province. [...]

Sheikh Ali Hattan al-Suleiman, also from the council, was even more direct: "I'd like to see an al-Qaeda bomber e-mail me or telephone me and talk about his education. They just came here with money. They gave money to the unemployed. They are not Iraqis - only Arabs. They are bastards. And the people who follow them are also bastards."

Abu Risha totally dismissed rumors that the Anbar council is forcing families in the region to give their sons to the cause, or is engaged in summary execution of captured jihadis. "We only accept volunteers. And we work by ourselves, like a team, by shifts. When we arrest people from al-Qaeda or Iraqis working for al-Qaeda, we take them to the Iraqi Army or the Ministry of Interior."

It's fair to assume, though, that once these jihadis end up in the hands of the ministry's death squads, torture and death are inevitable. Resistance to capture also means jihadis are killed on the spot. And when the going gets really rough, "sometimes we call for American air strikes".

Posted by Orrin Judd at May 4, 2007 8:37 AM

Somehow I fail to be shocked or concerned that Al Qaeda jihadis are treated poorly by either the locals or the Iraqi security Forces.

Posted by: Mikey [TypeKey Profile Page] at May 4, 2007 8:48 AM

At least they don't make the Jihadis wear demeaning panties on their heads, but dispatching them upon resistance to capture ... dear me.

Posted by: Genecis at May 4, 2007 9:35 AM