[Marxism] Occupation forces thrown out of Sadr City

Johannes Schneider Johannes.Schneider at gmx.net
Mon May 10 04:03:58 MDT 2004



 From today's Washington Post:

Shiite Cleric's Militia Seizes Control of Baghdad Slum
By Daniel Williams
Washington Post Foreign Service
Monday, May 10, 2004; Page A01
BAGHDAD, May 9 -- Gunmen and commanders loyal to radical Shiite Muslim 
cleric Moqtada Sadr took over the giant Sadr City slum in Baghdad on 
Sunday, seizing control of police forces, municipal administration and 
schools and blocking freedom of movement in an area just five miles east 
of U.S. administration headquarters.
[...]
Members of the Mahdi Army, which numbers in the thousands, blocked streets 
with all manner of debris: fruit crates, stones, cinder block, automobile 
bumpers and iron grating. They set tires aflame and also burned the 
abundant street-side trash in the neighborhood. Heavy cranes and 
bulldozers were placed on main thoroughfares, available to block any 
American approach.
[...]
Around midday, masked men shot rocket-propelled grenades at the Karameh 
police station, which was guarded by a pair of tan Bradley Fighting 
Vehicles and a lone police guard. The Bradleys rattled side streets with 
heavy fire and 10 others soon rumbled into Sadr City to escort them out. 
U.S. military officials said the Americans killed 18 insurgents at Karameh 
and at another police station. U.S. officials also said they had secured 
the sites, but the Karameh station stood abandoned. Other municipal 
buildings were vacant as well.
Clutches of young men formed an inner cordon of checkpoints deep in Sadr 
City near Sadr's abandoned main offices. They ushered autos onto side 
streets, where suspicious eyes gazed into the passing vehicles, 
particularly four-wheel-drive vehicles, which many Iraqis view as the cars 
of foreigners. Checkpoints popped up where none had existed. New flocks of 
youths, some armed, diverted traffic onto narrow streets to face lines of 
cars herded there from the opposite direction.




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