Friday, March 17, 2006


The Amira shrine: an inside-the-beltway job?

Dahr Jamail lays out the contextual case that the devastation of the Askari shrine in Samarra was done by the US: Along with the showing of religious solidarity, there is widespread belief by Shiite religious clerics both in and outside Iraq, as well as belief in the Arab media, that US covert operations were behind the bombing: Shiite Cleric Muqtada Al Sadr blamed the United States occupation for the current violence....In another interview, Sadr stated, "We say that the occupiers are responsible for such crisis [Golden Mosque bombing] ... there is only one enemy. The occupier." Adel Abdul Mehdi, the Iraqi Vice President, held the American Ambassador [Zalmay Khalilzad] responsible for the bombing of the Golden Mosque, "especially since occupation forces did not comply with curfew orders imposed by the Iraqi government." ...Lebanese Shiite cleric and Secretary General of Hezbollah, Hassan Nasrallah, said America and Israel are to blame for the sectarian divisions in Iraq, claiming that the violence will offer further justifications for maintaining the occupation of Iraq. According to the Saudi-based Arab News editorial, a civil-war scenario may serve the interests of the Bush administration: "This may in the end be what Washington wants, because if Iraq plunges into chaos, it could be the Bush ticket out of the Iraq debacle, albeit paid for in rivers of Iraqi blood as well the utter humiliation of the president's administration and its neo-con agenda." Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the Supreme Leader of Iran, urged Iraqi Shia not to seek revenge against Sunni Muslims, saying there were definite plots "to force the Shia to attack the mosques and other properties respected by the Sunni," and blamed the intelligence services of the US and Israel for being responsible for the bombing of the Golden Mosque. Hoseyn Shari'atmadarit wrote in the Keyhan newspaper of Iran on February 25 of several instances of documented covert operations carried out by occupation forces in Iraq..." Now, understand, this is not the evidence that's really needed. What's needed is a response by explosives experts or members of SF to the points I raised below. But contextual evidence often guides one on the right path when more solid evidence is lacking. The one suspect that Dahr Jamail seems not to have addressed is what is loosely called Al Qaida. But then why are these Shiite leaders so firmly convinced that this was the work of the US?
Jon Stewart just reported on Operation Swarmer by asking, "Why now?" and then answering his own question [paraphrasing]: The Iraqis may actually have a government soon, which would stabilize the country, so the U.S. is making sure conditions remain what the Iraqi people are used to.
Yeah. Saw that.

He should go into doing real news.
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