As expected, I’m being taken to task in the comments section in my previous post for saying it’s time to take out Moqtada al Sadr. For whatever it’s worth, at least some people in Iraq are with me on this. Obviously, some Iraqis like al-Sadr and sympathize with this goals, but they are part of the problem. I, for one, don’t wish to let them run roughshod over those who want a secular democratic Iraq. If Pat Roberton or some other right-wing nut raised an American militia to overthrow the government and impose a theocracy, I’d want him and them taken out, too, not negotiated with or appeased. Call me crazy.
Here is Omar over at Iraq the Model. This is a long excerpt, but I want to make sure everyone sees this, not just those who choose to follow my links.
It seems that it’s time at last! I hope they get Muqtada this time and also all his deputies. People here are not only disgusted and upset with this gang but also most of them showed extreme anger and some of them went as far as condemning Islam and even the Mahdi himself!! I don’t agree of course with that, as Muqtada has nothing to do with Islam.
A She’at taxi driver told me, “ Why are we doing this!? Why among all religions we commit such horrible crimes?? If this is Islam then s**t on it and on Mahdi himself, we don’t want this! They went as far as attacking peaceful churches and I really don’t understand why! This is not the Islam we were raised to believe in, the Islam of peace and tolerance. I wish I could see this idiot dead.”
One of my colleagues; a She’at who used to sympathize greatly with Islamist whether She’at or Sunni, told me today that he is shocked with what the Mahdi army is doing, “ When he revolted the 1st time and they called him an outlaw we didn’t like it. How can they call a cleric who’s the son of Iraq’s most respectable Ayetullah, an outlaw. Now I cannot and I do not want to defend him. He’s a criminal and so are all his followers. They have killed civilians, policemen, destroyed a gas station in Sadr city, and are threatening to burn down the oil pipelines now! Why and for what!?”
None of the people I met today showed any sympathy with Sadr and all of them showed eagerness to end this situation in a decisive way, not by negotiation but through capturing or killing Sadr and disarming his militia… [Emphasis added.]
I do suggest you click over to his site. Lots of interesting stuff from a guy who actually lives there. He doesn’t have much patience for the “soft on fascism” line. He would have to live with the real-world results of that policy.