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April 13, 2004

SOME HAVE MADE MUCH of the reluctance of some Iraqi security forces to fight. But as Capt. Ed notes, there's a lot of that going around in Iraq:

Sheikh Hazem al-Aaraji, a representative of Mr Sadr in the Iraqi capital, was seized as he attended a meeting of tribal leaders at the Sheraton Hotel, one day after the US military vowed to "kill or capture" Mr Sadr himself.

Mr Aaraji's bodyguards stepped aside when confronted by US soldiers, who arrested Mr Aaraji and drove him away in a Bradley fighting vehicle according to the Associated Press.

This strikes me as a good thing.

UPDATE: Bill Herbert emails this story, noting that some Iraqi special forces have done quite well indeed. True enough, but they're the exception. That's probably not a surprise -- you don't build a firstrate army or police force from scratch in less than a year -- but it's still the case. The article also underscores the importance of a June 30 transfer of sovereignty, as these soldiers say they will quit if that doesn't happen.