contractors protect America's 'Governor' of Iraq, L.
Bremer, in 2003. The reputation of private contractors
Iraq is as bad now as it was at the height of the War.
Iraqi Officials Cover
Up for 'American Terrorists'
"This goes beyond the issue of planning to assassinate the governor. It goes to the fact that the Americans who were detained have been involved in dirty operations before, shooting innocent civilians and traffic police to death at intersections in an effort to destabilize Iraq's security. Here again, the government has wasted an excellent opportunity to expose terrorists and groups involved in spilling Iraqi blood."
Were Americans arrested or
not? Apparently, that question means absolutely nothing to the Iraqi government, which has
entirely omitted any mention of this important subject: Four Americans, including
a woman, detained laden with unlicensed weapons and driving an (assassination)
vehicle - a BMW with signs of having been in at least one collision and which
doesn't look as if it belongs to the embassy of the most powerful nation in the
world. Reports are that the four are CIA operatives who were intent on executing
a terrorist plot.
Although they were in government custody after being detained by the Baghdad
governor's security detail, we have been surprised by the failure of government spokesmen
Ali Al Dabbagh, who is usually seen on satellite TV screens, to explain government’s position regarding the arrested law breakers. The same
applies to Baghdad's pathetic security spokesman Major General Qassim Atta, who is apparently so
preoccupied with the confessions of Vice President Tariq Al-Hashimi
that he hides behind the curtains, remaining silent on this dangerous subject. [Vice President Al-Hashimi, a Sunni, is accused of
operating a private hit squad to eliminate Shiite officials. See photo box,
As for the Office of the Adjutant
General of the Armed Forces, there was no comment on the subject. It's the same
from the Interior Ministry and National Assembly, whose spokespeople have
kept silent. Such is the case even from members of the National Assembly's Defense
and Security committees. As for the Foreign Ministry, this story is said to be
outside of its scope, even though it is responsible for coordinating with embassies
and dealing with the diplomatic issues that concern them.
If we move away from the government's
official position, we can take up the stance of the ruling Dawa Party. Given the
fact that Baghdad Governor Salah Abdul Razzaq is a Dawa Party leader, his administration's
position is deplorable. Its printers remain dry. It has yet to lift our hearts with
a statement condemning the incident or even demanding that the U.S. Embassy provide
a clear justification for the presence of armed men near the governor’s home.
This goes beyond the issue of
planning to assassinate the governor. It goes to the fact that the
Americans who were detained have been involved in dirty operations before, shooting innocent civilians and traffic police to death at intersections in an effort to
destabilize Iraq's security. Here again, the government has wasted an excellent opportunity
to expose terrorists and groups involved in spilling Iraqi blood.
It is my understanding that Governor
Abdul Razzak himself took a bold and courageous stand on the issue. While others
tried to cover it up, he alone faced the forces of evil and darkness. There are
many reasons for the cover up, but the central reason is that the Americans have
rewarded many people in the security apparatus with positions and rapid promotions
from one star to two swords (as fast as lightning).
[Editor’s Note: Symbols of Iraqi
rank range from a single star for second lieutenants to two swords for general].
In addition, going up against U.S.
intelligence is a red line that most Iraqi security officials won't cross. Then
there is the Iraqi
government's fear of directly confronting the Americans, who only recently handed back Iraq's sovereignty. We wonder what
would have happened if the detained gunmen were Turks or Iranians? Wouldn’t every
party spokesperson or group associated with the National Assembly raise their
voice? Wouldn’t accusations be made of interference to Iraq's domestic affairs?
Would charges be made that militias are behind many terrorist operations?
Despite the shameful
reactions we have noted, the governor eventually emerged victorious
when Jeffrey [U.S. Ambassador James F. Jeffrey] apologized to him, and
politicians rushed to kiss his hand to obtain his blessing. But meanwhile, every
day, particularly during a crisis, one can find a long line of politicians, National
Assembly members, ministers, advisors, tribal leaders, businessmen and high-ranking
officers waiting at the U.S. Embassy door to offer their allegiance, prove their
obedience and receive instructions.
But Baghdad Governor Razzak
forced U.S. Embassy staff to respect the people and laws of the capital by issuing
rigorous and disciplined rules for dealing with law-breaking foreign nationals
and seeking to ensure that they submit to Iraqi instructions. Signs all over Baghdad
now praise the governor's courage. Meanwhile, Muqtada al-Sadr proclaimed his
support for the governor's courageous stand, demanding that other politicians
follow his patriotic example. He also called for an investigation into who
ordered the Americans' release and trials for responsible Iraqi officials. We
support this, as well as the demand for an investigation.
Average citizens were
overjoyed, feeling that their dignity had been restored. But not through ceremonies,
music blaring, flag raisings, or the presence of those wearing stars and medals.
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