Saturday, June 12, 2004
Iraq War NewsIraqi Kidnappers Kill Lebanese Hostage
: "Iraqi gunmen kidnapped three Lebanese in Iraq and killed one of them, a Lebanese Foreign Ministry official said Saturday. (AP)
"In Yahoo! News: War with IraqBlair told 'heed anti-war message'
: "Tony Blair must persuade Labour supporters there could be no repeat of an Iraq-style war if the party is to recover from its local election hammering and win a third term in power, former foreign secretary Robin Cook said.
"In Ananova: War In IraqTurkish hostages released in Iraq
: "Seven Turkish contractors taken hostage in Iraq were released by their kidnappers, their employer said Saturday.
"In Seattle Post-Intelligencer: War on IraqAl-Zawahri accuses U.S. in new tape
: "A new audiotape believed to be from al-Qaida No. 2 Ayman al-Zawahri alleges that a U.S. plan for reform in the Middle East is really a bid to replace Arab leaders.
"In Seattle Post-Intelligencer: War on IraqGunmen Kill Iraqi Foreign Ministry Official
: "Gunmen fatally wounded a seniorofficial of Iraq's foreign ministry in Baghdad Saturday, aforeign ministry official said. (Reuters)
"In Yahoo! News: War with IraqVarious updates and some hard truth
in Sadr Supports Interim Government
: "Moktada al-Sadr says he supports the new Iraqi interim government. The New York Times reports:
The anti-American Shiite cleric Moktada al-Sadr on Friday endorsed the new interim Iraqi government and appeared to urge his followers to honor a week-old cease-fire that has been frayed by continuing violence.
A senior aide to Mr. Sadr, Sheik Jabir al-Khafaji, used a sermon during Friday Prayers in the Sadr stronghold of Kufa, 120 miles south of here, to announce that Mr. Sadr now approved of the interim government he had previously mocked and that he wanted its leaders to set a timetable for the departure of occupation forces.
" ?From now on, I beg you to start afresh for Iraq for the sake of peace and safety,' " Sheik Khafaji quoted Mr. Sadr as saying. " ?We have to avoid pushing humiliation and aggression on others and go forward with the independence of Iraq and not respond to the occupiers.' "
Those words represent a radical reversal of Mr. Sadr's past position. They could also represent an effort by Mr. Sadr to become involved in the politics of the nation, rather than continue as a leader of a 10-week-old insurgent struggle.
[. . .]
Another Sadr aide said after the sermon that Mr. Sadr's change of position did not mean that he supported the occupation or American involvement in the new government, but rather that he hoped the new government would work for the interests of Iraqis. Mr. Sadr met last Saturday with Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, Iraq's most influential Shiite cleric, but it was unclear whether Ayatollah Sistani had persuaded Mr. Sadr to reverse his opposition to the new government.
At the same time that Mr. Sadr's faction appeared to soften its hard-line position, imams at several Sunni mosques in Baghdad delivered sermons beseeching former officers of the Iraqi Army to join the insurgency and drive out the American-led occupation forces.
From California Yankee .
"In Command Post: IrakTip-Off Foils Pipeline Sabotage
: "From the ABC :
US soldiers have foiled a new sabotage attempt against Iraq's key oil sector following three successful attacks earlier in the week, the US military says.
Local residents have alerted troops in the town of Qayyarah, between the main oil pipeline hub of Baiji and the northern capital of Mosul, to a bomb at a nearby refinery.
" Soldiers quickly discovered the device, which was connected to a timer, and notified the explosive ordnance disposal team who destroyed the device ," a spokesman said.
Iraqi Prime Minister Iyad Allawi warned yesterday that the country has lost more than $US200 million over the past seven months due to 130 separate attacks on its pipeline network.
He blames terrorists and foreign fighters for targeting the industry, which generates more than 90 per cent of Iraq's revenues.
"In Command Post: IrakEarly Abu Ghraib Reports Went Unheeded
: "At least five soldiers objected last fall to abuses they saw at the Abu Ghraib prison near Baghdad. One demanded to be reassigned, saying the behavior he witnessed there "made me sick to my stomach." (AP)
"In Yahoo! News: War with Iraq
Friday, June 11, 2004
Iraq War NewsNation bids final farewell to Reagan
: "Mustering its most magnificent tributes for America's 40th president, the nation bid a final farewell to Ronald Reagan on Friday in a funeral praising the former president for his lifelong optimism and certainty about America and its place in the world.
"In JuneauEmpire.com: Associated PressPoll: Voters say Iraq didn't merit war
: "A majority of American registered voters now say conditions in Iraq did not merit war, but most are reluctant to abandon efforts there, according to a new Los Angeles Times poll.
"In JuneauEmpire.com: Associated PressBoston police officers march on City Hall
: "Picketing police officers marched to City Hall from the site of the Democratic National Convention on Friday after federal marshals began monitoring whether they were impeding efforts to convert the sports arena into a staging ground for John Kerry's nomination.
"In JuneauEmpire.com: Associated PressGunmen raid police station near Baghdad
: "Gunmen stormed a police station south of Baghdad, drove off the poorly armed police and blew up the building Friday in the fourth such attack against Iraqi security installations over the last week, officials and witnesses said.
"In JuneauEmpire.com: Associated PressCoup attempt in Congo put down by troops
: "Congolese troops put down a coup attempt by a small band of dissidents within the presidential guard Friday, the government said, after heavy gunfire and tank shelling echoed across the central African nation's capital for several hours.
"In JuneauEmpire.com: Associated PressRay Charles remembered as an innovator
: "Ray Charles is being remembered as a musical innovator who blended genres of music to create a new style. Charles died on Thursday of acute liver disease at age 73.
"In JuneauEmpire.com: Associated PressBritons Punish Blair Over Iraq in Election
: "Britons angry over the Iraq war handedPrime Minister Tony Blair a humiliating electoral reverse, withlocal poll results on Friday showing his ruling Labour Partycoming third behind the main opposition parties. (Reuters)
"In Yahoo! News: War with IraqShiite Gunmen Raid Najaf Police Station
: "Shiite gunmen loyal to radical cleric Muqtada al-Sadr ransacked an Iraqi police station Thursday in the holy city of Najaf, threatening a truce that had held for nearly a week. U.S. troops refused to intervene in the fighting, in which six Iraqis died. (AP)
"In Yahoo! News: War with IraqU.N. crews halt West Bank reconstruction
: "The United Nations suspended a construction project in this refugee camp after Palestinian gunmen threatened crews rebuilding houses destroyed by Israeli forces, a U.N. official said Thursday.
"In Seattle Post-Intelligencer: War on IraqIraq tribal chiefs try to restore order
: "For centuries, tribal chiefs have held together the social fabric of Iraq through diplomacy and mediation - skills Iraqi leaders will need as they try to unite the country's ethnic and sectarian groups and stop the bloodshed of the past year.
"In Seattle Post-Intelligencer: War on IraqPolish man home after Iraq kidnapping
: "Blinking through the blinding dust kicked up by helicopter rotors, Jerzy Kos saw soldiers bursting through the iron door of the house where he was held captive in Iraq. Then, he recalled Thursday, they reassured him: "Don't worry, we are Americans."
"In Seattle Post-Intelligencer: War on Iraq