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Taleban kill second SKorean hostage
Today's Headlines
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Taleban say kill second SKorean hostage
KABUL - Taleban kidnappers shot dead a male South Korean hosage on Monday, a spokesman said, accusing the Afghan government of not listening to rebel demands for the release of Taleban prisoners.

“We shot dead a male captive because the government did not listen to our demands,” spokesman Qari Mohammad Yousuf told Reuters by telephone. “We killed one of the male hostages at 6.30 this evening (1400 GMT) because the Kabul administration did not listen to our repeated demands,” he told Reuters by telephone from an unknown location.
I'll bet Reuters knows.
He said the Taleban would kill more hostages if Kabul ignored their demand to release rebel prisoners, but gave no new deadline. He said the body had been dumped by the side of a road.

The shooting was a bloody rejection of the authorities’ request for more time for talks on freeing the South Korean hostages after the expiry of a rebel deadline earlier in the day. The Taleban had earlier extended its ’final’ deadline but insisted the release of Taleban prisoners was the only way to settle the crisis. The government had wanted the Taleban to first release the 18 women hostages, but the insurgents demanded the government release its prisoners first, leading to deadlock, said a Kabul-based Western security analyst who declined to be named.

The Taleban seized 23 Korean Christians, 18 of them women, 11 days ago from a bus in Ghazni on the main highway south from Kabul and killed the leader of the group on Wednesday after an earlier deadline passed.
Posted by: Steve White || 07/31/2007 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [882 views] Top|| File under: Taliban

#1  When will the South Korean people start demanding that their "leaders" quit whimpering and send in the ROK Marines?
Posted by: Ricky bin Ricardo (Abu Babaloo) || 07/31/2007 2:04 Comments || Top||

#2  “We shot dead a male captive because the government did not listen to our demands,” spokesman Qari Mohammad Yousuf told Reuters by telephone.

Awwwwwwww...look what you made us do!
Posted by: tu3031 || 07/31/2007 8:11 Comments || Top||

#3  Nuke the NW provinces and see how fast the "taliban" release their prisoners, especially if the attack is followed up by a demand for their release within x hours, or the rest of pakiwakiland gets it. The money, funding, and training is coming from the pak government, with or without pervert's permission. Time to put an end to this failed experiment and sterilize the petre dish.
Posted by: Old Patriot || 07/31/2007 12:33 Comments || Top||

Taleban kills 10 Afghan security employees
KABUL - Taleban insurgents ambushed and killed 10 Afghan employees of a private security company in the south of the country on Monday, the interior ministry said. Three other staff of the company were wounded in the ambush, which happened before dawn on a highway in the southern province of Zabul, the interior ministry said in a statement. The insurgents fled after the ambush, it added.

A provincial official said the victims worked for a US private security company.

Before the ambush, Taleban guerrillas overran a district in the northwestern province of Badghis, killing at least three police, a provincial official said. Three policemen were also killed in a clash with militants in Ghazni town to the southwest of Kabul, witnesses said.

And late the previous night, Taleban insurgents stormed a police post in the southwestern province of Nimroz, killing five police and abducting four others, a provincial official said.
Posted by: Steve White || 07/31/2007 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [327 views] Top|| File under: Taliban

Africa Horn
Mogadishu blast wounds three soldiers
(SomaliNet) Three police officers and one civilian were wounded in bomb blast, which occurred in the main Bakara market, south of the Somalia capital Mogadishu – as the reconciliation congress continues in the city for the second week.

An eyewitness told Somalinet that a local militant threw a hand grenade bomb at the police forces who were in the act of security operations around 10:50am local time. Soon after the explosion, the security forces sealed off the area and began investigations over who was behind the attack. One of the wounded police officers was reported to be in critical condition, according to local medical sources.

Meanwhile, fighting has today broken out in Laanta Buure military training camp 35km south of the capital between government soldiers. One soldier was reported to have wounded in the fighting so far. Reports say the latest skirmish was caused by row between the rival soldiers.
Posted by: Steve White || 07/31/2007 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [289 views] Top|| File under: Islamic Courts

2 arms dealers held with AK-47 rifle
Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) arrested two alleged arms dealers with an AK-47 rifle from the city's Chandanpura area under Kotwali Police Station at around 10:00pm yesterday.
Nothing like an early evening arrest to put you in the mood for a moonlight drive...heh, heh
The arrestees-- Jasim and Khurshed-- hailed from Patiya and Goalkhali upazilas of the district and are activists of Bangladesh Chhatra League, the student wing of Awami League, sources said.
A couple of fine upstanding lads, I'm sure
Acting on a tip-off, the elite force members raided the area and found the two standing with a bag near Chandanpura mosque.
"Howdy boys. Pretty evening, ain't it? Say now, what ya got in da bag, looks heavy."
The Rab members found the AK-47 rifle in the bag.
Quoting the arrestees,
Rab official Captain Arif said they were waiting for Khokon, who was supposed to reach the spot to buy the arm.
'No, no, that's not ours, we was just gonna sell it, no, wait..."
The two were later taken to Rab-7 office at Patenga where the elite force members were interrogating them till filing of this report at 12.30am.
Ah, nothing like an early evening arrest and a workout with ol Number 7 to put you in the mood for a road trip.....
Posted by: || 07/31/2007 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [294 views] Top|| File under:

#1  So - did they hang around and nab Khokon too?
Posted by: Knuckles Vobiscum || 07/31/2007 2:12 Comments || Top||

#2  An AK is nothing more than a shutter gun with a different name, and a few minor uopgrades, really.
Posted by: anonymous5089 || 07/31/2007 3:09 Comments || Top||

#3  It takes two guys to deal one lousy AK-47?
Posted by: Glenmore || 07/31/2007 7:01 Comments || Top||

#4  If they'd only waited a couple more hours before filing this report, they could have included the Crossfire™.
Posted by: Gary and the Samoyeds || 07/31/2007 9:11 Comments || Top||

#5  #4 If they'd only waited a couple more hours before filing this report, they could have included the Crossfire™. Posted by: Gary and the Samoyeds 2007-07-31 09:11

I don't think this pair is bright enough to have a "gang", Gary. They'll probably just have a work accident instead.
Posted by: Old Patriot || 07/31/2007 12:37 Comments || Top||

#6  It takes two guys to deal one lousy AK-47?

Well, you are talkin' about Bangladesh, Glenmore. Not exactly like the streets of N'awlins for arms deals.
Posted by: BA || 07/31/2007 15:49 Comments || Top||

#7  Ah, I was wondering when the posts about the admirable RAB would resume. Truly, I have missed it.
Posted by: Ptah || 07/31/2007 18:45 Comments || Top||

Down Under
Dr. Mohamed Haneef's curious chat room records

Chat room talk behind Haneef's visa cancellation

Immigration Minister Kevin Andrews says some of the information he used to make a decision to cancel Mohamed Haneef's visa included an Internet chat room conversation with the doctor's brother in India. Mr Andrews says he had been advised by solicitor-general David Bennett QC that he can release some elements of the previously secret information he used to cancel the visa.

He says in the conversation, Dr Haneef's brother says, "nothing has been found out about you", "have you got permission to leave work?" and "tell them you have a newborn daughter".
So, “nothing has been found out about you”, yet ...
Mr Andrews also says, in the conversation, which took place the day before Dr Haneef tried to leave Australia, the doctor's brother asks, "when are you getting out?" To which Dr Haneef replied, "today."
Why the hurry?
Mr Andrews says he will not be releasing all the information at Mr Bennett's advice, due to further investigations both in Australia and overseas. Mr Andrews also revealed information on why he says Dr Haneef was trying to leave Australia on a one-way ticket before Federal Police picked him up.
Hey, everybody flies with a one-way ticket these days.
"He did not apply for leave from the hospital when he went to work at the hospital on the Monday morning and it was not until after he received two telephone calls - one from India - having been told in both calls that there was an issue about his SIM card, that he applied for leave that afternoon from the hospital," he said. A terrorism-related charge against Dr Haneef was dropped last week and he has since returned to India.
I think Australia's Indian community needs to take a much closer look at Dr. Mohamed Haneef's activities before they continue to demand an apology. This guy reeks like leftover lutefisk.
Posted by: Zenster || 07/31/2007 05:04 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [300 views] Top|| File under: Takfir wal-Hijra

#1  Why do I get the feeling we've been played for fools. All he had to do was keep quiet for the short time they were allowed to keep him for questioning in, no doubt, comfortable conditions and then he's off scot free.
Posted by: Gladys || 07/31/2007 6:03 Comments || Top||

#2  More from the The Hindu news update service:

Andrews and the Australian Federal Police had indicated the decision to cancel the visa had been made on basis of information not provided to the court.

"The brother told him to 'tell them that you have to as you have a daughter born, do not tell them anything else'.

"The brother then said not to delay his departure and not to let anyone else use his number in Australia, nor to give it to anyone.

"The brother added that 'auntie' told him that brother Kafeel used it in some sort of protest over there," Andrews said, in a reference to the UK bombing accused Kafeel Ahmed.

Yo, India! Are you detaining this maggot on suspicion of terrorist activity or what?
Posted by: Zenster || 07/31/2007 6:14 Comments || Top||

#3  Why do I get the feeling we've been played for fools.

That's because we all have been, Gladys. It is scary enough that Australia's normally more plainspoken politicians have let this one slip by the boards. Even worse is how so much of the West's political traitor elite couldn't give a rip about any of this, let alone actively support it.
Posted by: Zenster || 07/31/2007 6:22 Comments || Top||

#4  It's significant also that they chose to communicate such travel considerations through a chat room instead of through e-mail messages.
Posted by: Mike Sylwester || 07/31/2007 7:50 Comments || Top||

#5  This "Internet chat room" comes up quite a bit, and is likely Jihadist or Islamist, as it was apparently used by the suspects previously when discussing the "Mohamed cartoons".

Posted by: Mullah Lodabullah || 07/31/2007 10:01 Comments || Top||

#6  chatrooms don't protect against this or other more subtle tricks.
Posted by: 3dc || 07/31/2007 13:59 Comments || Top||

#7  Your Col. Flagg tried to install one of those on my Remington. Very odd.
Posted by: Palfrey || 07/31/2007 17:41 Comments || Top||

Death for two in Beant Singh assassination case
CHANDIGARH: A special trial court on Tuesday sentenced two Babbar Khalsa terrorists to death for the 1995 assassination of then Punjab chief minister Beant Singh.

Additional District and Sessions Judge Ravi Kumar Sondhi pronounced the death sentence for Jagtar Singh Hawara, the mastermind, and Balwant Singh.

The judge awarded life imprisonment to three others, Shamsher Singh, Gurmeet Singh and Lakhwinder Singh, who were convicted last week for conspiring to assassinate Beant Singh.

A suicide bomber, Dilawar Singh, killed the chief minister as he came out of his office at the high security Punjab civil secretariat in Chandigarh on August 31, 1995.

Balwant Singh was the second human bomb, to be used in case the first suicide bomber failed to kill Beant Singh.

A sixth person convicted in the same case under the Explosives Act, Naseeb Singh, was awarded 10 years imprisonment by the court on Tuesday. Since he has already spent 12 years in prison, he is likely to be let off.

All six were last week convicted by the special Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) court in the conspiracy of assassinating Beant Singh, who became chief minister in 1992.

Beant Singh, along with "super cop" K P S Gill, was largely credited with wiping out terrorism from Punjab by dealing with terrorists with an iron hand.
Posted by: John Frum || 07/31/2007 15:11 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [327 views] Top|| File under:

US must get tough with Pakistan, says adviser
WASHINGTON, July 30: A senior Bush administration adviser urged the United States on Monday to consider direct military action at alleged Al Qaeda targets inside Pakistan and link US aid to Islamabad’s performance in the war against terror. Lee Hamilton, a member of President George Bush’s Homeland Security Advisory Council, wrote in an article published in several US newspapers that Washington could not allow Al Qaeda to retain a safe haven in Pakistan’s tribal areas and it could not permit another terrorist attack on the United States. “Further US military aid to Pakistan should be conditional on Pakistani action. And we must be clear with Gen Musharraf that if Pakistan won’t take out Al Qaeda, the United States will. ”Mr. Hamilton said the US did not have to send its own troops to destroy Al Qaeda hideouts.
Posted by: JohnQC || 07/31/2007 09:58 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [435 views] Top|| File under: al-Qaeda

#1  Either he doesn't know, or doesn't grasp the concept of "covert" operations. As in no press release, no Tony Snow briefing, no NYT editorial in opposition because they don't know, etc.

And that is why they call them "covert" operations.
Posted by: Anonymoose || 07/31/2007 11:32 Comments || Top||

#2  I think Mr. Hamilton's comments are more on the line "the whole da$$ed country is a terrorist safe haven, and we really need to do something about it", than discussing something that can be done by covert means. The amount of explosive force necessary to do the job is hard to hide.
Posted by: Old Patriot || 07/31/2007 12:42 Comments || Top||

#3  US must get tough with Pakistan

Only if we ever want to have even the least shred of hope to see Islamic terrorism end within our own lifetimes. Oh, and I'll go with OP on this one. "Covert" doesn't even begin to address the proper amount of explosives required to get this job done right.
Posted by: Zenster || 07/31/2007 15:13 Comments || Top||

#4  I think the explosives necessary measure in the megatons range.
Posted by: DarthVader || 07/31/2007 15:26 Comments || Top||

#5  I think we all agree that we need to scour nwfp. Not sure if it needed to be said in the open. Perv is doing enough of a balancing act. If Perv's our guy (which is the way W seems to be playing it) then Hamilton needs to stfu & follow the boss's lead or resign and then bitch. If not, then turn loose the SOF teams and happy hunting. One can then debate whether to keep it covert or not. I'd tell the world -- can't keep your house in order -- we will and we don't give a sh*t if you don't like the mess we make before we leave.
Posted by: Broadhead6 || 07/31/2007 22:48 Comments || Top||

#6  I'd tell the world -- can't keep your house in order -- we will and we don't give a sh*t if you don't like the mess we make before we leave.

Word, Broadhead6. This will become the operative mode when the West finally gets off of its fat multi-culti tranzi ass and decides it really wants to survive.
Posted by: Zenster || 07/31/2007 23:47 Comments || Top||

Major Bollywood star gets six years hard labor in Mumbai bombings case
MUMBAI: Actor Sanjay Dutt was on Tuesday sentenced to rigorous imprisonment for six years for illegal possession of weapons that were given to him by associates of gangster Dawood Ibrahim ahead of the 1993 serial blasts.

Dutt, who spent 16 months in prison after his arrest in April 1993 and was free on bail, was also fined Rs 25,000 by the special TADA court of Judge P D Kode.

The court rejected Dutt's application seeking exemption from a prison term under the Probation of Offenders (POA) Act.

Dutt, who was seated in the back of the court when the sentence was announced, was visibly shocked as the judge gave the reasoning for his decision not to grant him relief under the POA Act.

After pronouncing the sentence, the court cancelled the bail granted to Dutt and told police to take him into custody.

Dutt was convicted in November last year under the Arms Act for the illegal possession of a 9mm pistol and an AK-56 rifle but was acquitted of more serious terrorism charges under the stringent TADA law.

Initially, the court granted Dutt's associate Rusi Mulla benefit under the POA Act but then announced that the actor and two others would not be eligible to get relief under the same law.

The court observed that Dutt had not merely committed a criminal act but also told three others to commit criminal acts on his behalf.

After a court clerk read out the sentence, Dutt was seen chatting with fellow convicts and friends Yusuf Nulwalla and Kersi Adajania.

Commenting upon affidavits filed by public personalities like actor Dilip Kumar in support of Dutt, Judge Kode said these are of no use if there exists material which says that the actor has indulged in a criminal act.

Dismissing the defence's argument that the weapons were acquired by Dutt for self-defence, Kode said such an acquisition cannot be called "noble", is contrary to the law and indicates scant respect for the law.

"I must say for every citizen, laws of the nation shall be respected. If you don't, I don't expect you to be called a moral person," Kode said.

Kode also observed it was an "eminently dangerous act" as the weapon possessed by Dutt was capable of mass destruction though the accused had not used the weapons.

Dutt acquired the weapons to "protect" his family in the aftermath of sectarian violence that erupted in Mumbai following the demolition of the Babri mosque in late 1992.

Kode said the character of the accused is very important while considering if they deserved relief under the POA Act. He pointed out that apart from possessing the weapons, Dutt was a close acquaintance of Anees Ibrahim and attended a party hosted by Dawood Ibrahim in Dubai.

Regarding the nature of the crime, Kode said generally, crime happens at the hands of any one man but Dutt drew another person to commit a crime which showed "high element of criminality."

Kode, however, said the crimes committed by Dutt and his friends Adajania and Nulwalla were not "anti-social, ghastly, inhuman, immoral or pre-planned" and did not cause any harm to the general public.
Posted by: John Frum || 07/31/2007 08:37 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [350 views] Top|| File under: Global Jihad

#1  Dude, you're gonna be real popular in jail

Posted by: John Frum || 07/31/2007 8:45 Comments || Top||

#2  Oh, I'll bet his imprisonment will be "rigorous"...
Posted by: tu3031 || 07/31/2007 8:55 Comments || Top||

#3  And the sentence will be stiff.
Posted by: JohnQC || 07/31/2007 9:30 Comments || Top||

#4  "Hard" time indeed.
Posted by: DarthVader || 07/31/2007 9:52 Comments || Top||

#5  Dutt the Butt
Posted by: Omavinter Scourge of the Sith || 07/31/2007 9:59 Comments || Top||

#6  I'm sorry, but real manly men do not have bigger tits than mine.

Just my two cents worth...
Posted by: Sgt. Mom || 07/31/2007 11:00 Comments || Top||

#7  I'm sorry, but real manly men do not have bigger tits than mine

Sgt Mom, truely a contender for snark o' the day!
Posted by: GORT || 07/31/2007 11:08 Comments || Top||

#8  It's odd that his pects would be so pumped when his upper arms aren't equally impressive. I can't think of an exercise to accomplish that.
Posted by: trailing wife || 07/31/2007 15:38 Comments || Top||

#9  Is that real or a photoshop? Because the body looks about fifteen years younger than the face.
Posted by: Mitch H. || 07/31/2007 15:39 Comments || Top||

#10  We don't care...
Posted by: Mahmoud Al-Jailbirdi || 07/31/2007 15:41 Comments || Top||

#11  Mitch, the body is waxed and oiled, he did enough repetitions with the weights just before the photo was snapped that his muscles are pumped, and he generally wears a shirt -- you can see the tan on his face, neck, and throat. The sun is so aging, you know. ;-)
Posted by: trailing wife || 07/31/2007 16:20 Comments || Top||

#12  Farmer Tan! Farmer Tan!
Posted by: Palfrey || 07/31/2007 17:02 Comments || Top||

#13  Somewhere in an Indian jail tonight, a convict is thanking Vishnu, Rama, Lakshmi, and the entire pantheon of Hindu gods for the gift sent by Judge Kode....
Posted by: John Frum || 07/31/2007 17:20 Comments || Top||

#14  "Act till the age of 100, I have only taken away six years (of your life). Don't get perturbed for you have many years to go and work like the Mackenna's Gold actor Gregory Peck," TADA court Judge PD Kode told the Bollywood actor.

The Judge advised Sanjay not to lose faith in himself, as he was still "number one" in Hindi films.

Replying to a plea by Sanjay that he had committed a mistake 14 years ago, he was tired and that he needed time to surrender, the Judge said: "You committed a mistake but you were also very sincere during the trials. So, I feel that you should not lose hope. I have full faith in you. Don't worry this is just a momentary thing," the Judge said.
Posted by: John Frum || 07/31/2007 17:31 Comments || Top||

#15  The Judge is borderline aiding FAN.
Posted by: Palfrey || 07/31/2007 17:45 Comments || Top||

#16  Could be pec implants, as you say TW, they do seem out of proportion to his upper arms...

Ah well, perhaps he can do other exercises in jail to balance things up - I'm sure Mahmoud Al-Jailbirdi can oblige.
Posted by: Tony (UK) || 07/31/2007 20:50 Comments || Top||

Seven killed in NW Pakistan
ISLAMABAD - Seven people died in Islamic militant attacks on Monday and a mosque in northwestern Pakistan, officials said, as the country struggles to cope with increasing violence.

Three paramilitary soldiers and four civilians died in militant attacks on Monday in the North Waziristan tribal region, military spokesman Major-General Waheed Arshad told Reuters. The soldiers were killed “when militants attacked a check-post near Miranshah,” he said, referring to the main town of North Waziristan.

The four civilians died when militants fired on a military convoy at a time when normal traffic was also plying the road, Arshad said.
Posted by: Steve White || 07/31/2007 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [308 views] Top|| File under: Taliban

#1  "civilians died when militants fired on a military convoy "

Paki Army using civilians as shields - war crime!

Better plan - ban all non-military traffic from Wazi roads, trails and paths. Then this kind of tragic collateral damage won't occur.
Posted by: Glenmore || 07/31/2007 7:04 Comments || Top||

Sunni Militants in Baghdad Shift Loyalties
There has been a shifting of alliances in a violent district of Baghdad as Sunni militants in the Amiriya neighborhood on the west side of the capital begin fighting alongside U.S. and Iraqi government forces against al-Qaida.

These former insurgents, who now call themselves the "Amiriya Revolutionaries," are helping to kill or capture al-Qaida members who were their allies just a few weeks ago.

Saad Abu al-Abed is a slightly built man with short, neat hair and a moustache. He is the only man not in uniform at a recent joint operations meeting between Iraqi and American soldiers working in Amiriya.

Sweating in an air conditioned office, the soldiers go through a list of suspected al-Qaida members still at large. This former Sunni insurgent smiles and says one of those men was killed last week. Another was captured and handed over to the Iraqi army. Everyone is relaxed, glad the ranks of the enemy are thinning. The atmosphere is friendly.

Later - sitting with only a reporter, a U.S. soldier and an interpreter in the room - al-Abed says he used to work as an intelligence officer in Saddam Hussein's army. Like a million other Iraqi soldiers, al-Abed found himself unemployed in 2003, when Paul Bremer, the American viceroy at the time, dissolved the Iraqi army.

"I went to work with my father," he says. "He had a photo studio. We had bakeries."

The stores were in Amiriya, once an upscale part of Baghdad that has now been overrun by sectarian militias. Al-Abed says the Mahdi Army, the militia loyal to Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, stole the family businesses. He says he started fighting the Mahdi Army after four of his brothers were killed by the Shiite militiamen.

"This isn't the way we were raised. If they're bad, that doesn't mean we behave like them," al-Abed explains. "I killed Mahdi Army. I didn't kill Shiites. I killed people who kill innocents and people who expelled people from their homes."

While he is determined to battle Shiite militiamen over the last remaining mixed neighborhoods in west Baghdad, al-Abed says that fight has to be put off for now. On Tuesday, he is preoccupied with ridding Amiriya of al-Qaida.

"I believe the cause of all the problems in Iraq right now is al-Qaida. They threatened the Sunnis, told them not to vote, so they didn't enter the political process," he says. "It allowed other people to take power, take charge of the security forces, it all goes back to al-Qaida

Al-Abed claims he has about a 100 men operating as a neighborhood watch in Amiriya, weeding out alleged al-Qaida operatives. Employing past skills, he provides intelligence to the U.S. and Iraqi army forces working in this area.

But relying on al-Abed's help is a risky gambit for U.S. forces because the new alliance could be used to settle old scores, says U.S. Army Capt. Peter Sulewski.

Sulewski says U.S. forces cannot be certain that al-Abed and his group are not just picking off individuals that they want to get rid of in their own fight for supremacy in the region. However, he says it is worth the risk.

Once he and his men have rid Amiriya of al-Qaida, al-Abed plans to go back to fighting the Mahdi Army. He knows the Iraqi security forces that he is currently cooperating with are filled with Shiites loyal to the Mahdi Army. He looks at the American soldier standing in the room and speaks through an interpreter. "My strength right now is dependent on the coalition forces being here," he says. "So, right now, I'm not afraid of the Mahdi Army.

When asked if he is afraid of the day the U.S. forces leave, he answers in plain English. "Yeah," he says.

Posted by: Floling Fleregum9749 || 07/31/2007 12:22 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [731 views] Top|| File under: Iraqi Insurgency

#1  This article came from National Public Radio! The other day the New York Times had an op-ed trumpeting the success of the Surge and the cluelessness of those in Washington,DC who are claiming quagmire; yesterday the Democratic Whip in the House said winning in Iraq poses serious problems for the Dems, and they should hold off making any further statements on the subject until General Patreus reports back in September. Perhaps the Apocalypse is nigh.
Posted by: trailing wife || 07/31/2007 15:45 Comments || Top||

#2  There has been a shifting of alliances
Would it be too simplistic to say: Strong. Horse.
Posted by: eLarson || 07/31/2007 15:56 Comments || Top||

#3  Don't worry, Harry and Nancy. NPR Radio has a cloud for this silver lining.

Sulewski says U.S. forces cannot be certain that al-Abed and his group are not just picking off individuals that they want to get rid of in their own fight for supremacy in the region.

But if they all cooperate long enough to get rid of the worst of the worst, maybe the best of the rest will have a chance to make a go of it.
Posted by: Bobby || 07/31/2007 16:03 Comments || Top||

#4  I would give my eye-teeth to see the classified intelligence estimates of the numbers of al-Qaeda still believed to be in country, and where.

It must be terribly hard to get any replacements into Iraq, running the gauntlet of tribes happy to slit their gizzards.
Posted by: Anonymoose || 07/31/2007 16:32 Comments || Top||

#5  Once he and his men have rid Amiriya of al-Qaida, al-Abed plans to go back to fighting the Mahdi Army.

Oddly we have quality photos, cell numbers and home addresses back at London Circus. Perhaps a show me I give you is in order.
Posted by: Palfrey || 07/31/2007 17:40 Comments || Top||

#6  But relying on al-Abed's help is a risky gambit for U.S. forces because the new alliance could be used to settle old scores, says U.S. Army Capt. Peter Sulewski.

Sulewski says U.S. forces cannot be certain that al-Abed and his group are not just picking off individuals that they want to get rid of in their own fight for supremacy in the region. However, he says it is worth the risk.

In summary, we have no friends among the Iraqi people, only temporary allies.

Would it be too simplistic to say: Strong. Horse.

Only if you include the caveat that once the strong horse wins Muslims will suddenly develop a taste for horse flesh.
Posted by: Zenster || 07/31/2007 19:30 Comments || Top||

#7  They're not shifting loyalties. They're shifting alliances.
Posted by: Zhang Fei || 07/31/2007 22:11 Comments || Top||

Michael Yon: Bread and a Circus, Part 1 of 2
Before the Battle for Baqubah (Operation Arrowhead Ripper), thousands of refugees had streamed out of Baqubah and the surrounding towns. I’ve heard Iraqis throw around a number of 17,000 IDPs [Internally Displaced Iraqis], although I have no idea how accurate that is, if at all. Two weeks after the start of Arrowhead Ripper, 3-2 SBCT was tracking just over a thousand IDPs, and since I shared a tent with the soldiers who did most of the counting (C-52), I put stock in that number and believe it to be roughly accurate. I saw many of the IDPs with my own eyes.

Some of the fleeing families had kept out of the sun by moving inside Baqubah’s electrical plant. The plant had been captured by C-52, a group of 54 soldiers who have fought all over Iraq. I accompanied C-52 on the night of 19 June.

The people of Baqubah learned to hate and be terrified of al Qaeda. On the evening of the 18th, just hours before the attack scheduled for 0100 on the 19th, C-52 gathered around the back of the Strykers. Men and machines were loaded for toe-to-toe combat with al Qaeda. But they were not going in alone. Local enemies, who previously were deeply entwined with al Qaeda and had blown up and shot Americans, had turned on al Qaeda, and their help would lead to the death and capture of many of our now common enemy.

The attack was on.

Jets, gun ships, helicopters and UAVs were in the air. A helicopter air assault was preparing to launch. Cannons steadied on their targets. Large MLRS rockets dozens of miles from Baqubah were dialed in. Special Forces, spies, lies and tricks of all sorts were arrayed against those who would stand and fight. And those who would stand had prepared massive ambushes for us. . . .

As the attack unfolded, about a thousand Iraqis fled their homes; and it was the job of C-52 to screen for al Qaeda. Some al Qaeda—who cross-dressed and tried to slip out as women—were caught when their disguises failed. Some Iraqis reported that homes in their areas had been destroyed, and I recall one saying that people were trapped in the rubble, though civilian deaths from our attacks were so low they were difficult to count. (I had free range and was specifically watching for civilian fatalities, yet did not see any civilians killed by us during the attack.)

The deliberate pace of the attack, the systematic and thorough process of clearing the city house by house, street by street, and block by block, were factors in this; but the civilian and military casualties were also kept low by the unexpected and overwhelming cooperation of ordinary Iraqi citizens, who pointed out the enemy and many of the bombs set to ambush troops.

There were interesting dynamics unfolding. For instance, our soldiers were much more reluctant to use force when civilians were helping. I saw numerous occasions where soldiers cleared out all the civilians in areas before attacking known targets that civilians had pointed out. For instance, in the more than two dozen houses and buildings rigged as giant bombs, civilians pointed out many of those bombs. Our soldiers and Iraqi soldiers simply stopped, cleared out the people, and then destroyed the buildings, but each time they worked harder to mitigate damage to surrounding houses, and paid people for the unavoidable damages when they occurred. . . .

Lots more at the link, including many photos and a long description of the process of organizing a convoy from Baqubah to a warehouse in Baghdad to pick up food.

It’s time to end this dispatch with a shameful teaser:

This is where it really started to get exciting.
Posted by: Mike || 07/31/2007 11:30 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [343 views] Top|| File under: al-Qaeda in Iraq

W. Thomas Smith: rules of engagement
. . . I spoke with some Marines earlier in Al Asad about rules of engagement (ROE). They told me there was this always-conscious low-grade concern among many Marines in combat today whenever they prepare to fire at the enemy. "Whenever I raise my weapon, sir, I sometimes wonder if I will fry [be punished] for this," one said.

This concern, which — in my opinion — could easily morph into a second of hesitation, could also easily result in Marines and soldiers being killed.

Also, the comment itself — "I sometimes wonder if I will fry" — are hardly the words or fears of what many on the Left would say are "cold blooded killers."

There is so much more to this story, and I will be talking with Marines about ROE in greater depth over the coming days. . . .

I depart on an infantry operation within hours. Will be offline for about two days.

Semper Fi.
Posted by: Mike || 07/31/2007 07:13 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [293 views] Top|| File under: Iraqi Insurgency

#1  It'd be nice, when it's all over, if a few prominent lefties "would fry" for putting our men in this quandry with their squawking. Murtha? Durbin? Pelosi? Reid? Step right this way...
Posted by: M. Murcek || 07/31/2007 8:51 Comments || Top||

#2  As I sadly said a long time ago, when ROEs are softened, it is good news, as it means the combat situation is turning into a police situation.

In most of the country, we can hope, eventually the ROE will be that only one individual be armed when a group of soldiers go out in public, and that if anything happens, their duty is to notify an Iraqi policeman or soldier and let them handle it.

The troops will always hate it at first.
Posted by: Anonymoose || 07/31/2007 11:36 Comments || Top||

#3  Murtha needs to "fry" long before this is all over, since most of it will last for 30 to 40 years at the current pace. Murtha should be out on his a$$ by sometime last Tuesday.
Posted by: Old Patriot || 07/31/2007 13:16 Comments || Top||

#4  Anonymoose, I respectfully disagree. Sure relaxed ROE's could be a sign of operations winding down but the ROEs these Marines are talking about have been in place for years. This is the most over-lawyered war in the history of mankind. The lawyers put the Marines in these positions and then prosecute them if they use that nano-second available to save their own life. If we ever pacify Iraq to the point of saying we need soft ROEs then I let the lawyers have their say but for now I say to them "just shut the f**k up".
Posted by: Jack is Back! || 07/31/2007 13:36 Comments || Top||

US,Turkey plan joint operation against PKK
Turkey and the United States are preparing a joint operation to capture leaders of the PKK terrorist organization holed up in the northern Iraqi mountains, according to an article in the Washington Post published on Monday. The article written by prominent columnist Robert D. Novak says this is "Bush's Turkish gamble."
Two strikes already: WaPo and Novak.
According to the article high-level U.S. officials are working with their Turkish counterparts on a joint military operation to suppress Kurdish terrorists and capture their leaders. It said the aim of the US is to "forestall Turkey from invading Iraq" by helping it with this covert activity.

Novak said while detailed operational plans are necessarily concealed, the broad outlines have been presented to select members of Congress as required by law. "U.S. Special Forces are to work with the Turkish army to suppress the Kurds' guerrilla campaign. The Bush administration is trying to prevent another front from opening in Iraq, which would have disastrous consequences. But this gamble risks major exposure and failure."

He said the Turkish initiative reflects the temperament and personality of George W. Bush. Novak said "significant cross-border operations surely would bring to the PKK's side the military forces of the Kurdistan Regional Government, the best U.S. ally in Iraq. What is Washington to do in the dilemma of two friends battling each other on an unwanted new front in Iraq?"

He said a surprising answer was given in secret briefings on Capitol Hill last week by Eric S. Edelman, a former aide to Vice President Cheney who is now undersecretary of defense for policy. Edelman, a Foreign Service officer who once was U.S. ambassador to Turkey, revealed to lawmakers plans for a covert operation of U.S. Special Forces to help the Turks neutralize the PKK. They would behead the terrorist organization by helping Turkey get rid of PKK leaders that they have targeted for years.

Novak reported Edelman's listeners were stunned. "Wasn't this risky? He responded that he was sure of success, adding that the U.S. role could be concealed and always would be denied. Even if all this is true, some of the briefed lawmakers left wondering whether this was a wise policy for handling the beleaguered Kurds, who had been betrayed so often by the U.S. government in years past."
Always denied, maybe, but it'd be splashed all over WaPo and the NYT, and the Dhimmis would run with stories of 'Bush assassionation squads'.
The Novak article came a day after Egemen Bagis, foreign policy advisor to Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, said Turkish forces were prepared to mount operations against the PKK who are based in Iraq, because the US had failed to intervene. "We are hoping we will not have to do it. We are hoping that our allies will start doing something, but if they don't we don't have many options," he told England's Daily Telegraph.

The US must appreciate that Turkey was prepared to go into Iraq, even if such a move put it on collision course with Washington, which is desperate not to destabilize the Kurdish region of Iraq, Bagis added. "We would not ask anyone's permission," he said.

A poll last week by the US-based Pew organization found that 72 percent of Turks regarded terrorism as the key issue facing the country. The same poll showed that only 9 per cent of Turks had a positive view of the US, with more than three quarters concerned that the Americans could pose a military threat to their country. Many Turks believe that the US has been supporting the Kurdish militants.
Posted by: Steve White || 07/31/2007 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [488 views] Top|| File under:

#1  bad idea.
Posted by: 3dc || 07/31/2007 3:04 Comments || Top||

#2  Turkish gamble - new slang for sucker bet...
Posted by: M. Murcek || 07/31/2007 9:02 Comments || Top||

#3  only 9 per cent of Turks had a positive view of the US, with more than three quarters concerned that the Americans could pose a military threat to their country.

I wonder how much sympathy there is here for the Turks? Not much, I'll bet not after their refusal to let 4th Div cross over. Now they want to cross over in a war they wanted no part of. Maybe we should befriend the PKK like we are doing with Sunnis in Anbar. Let that send a chill up the back of the Turks.
Posted by: Jack is Back! || 07/31/2007 13:41 Comments || Top||

#4  I remember something about Turkey not allow US troops on their soil...
Posted by: Boss Craising2882 || 07/31/2007 14:08 Comments || Top||

#5  I remember something about Turkey holding down the South Flank of NATO for 50 years.
Posted by: Palfrey || 07/31/2007 18:52 Comments || Top||

#6  Kinder-Kriegers don't do history.
Posted by: Pappy || 07/31/2007 22:29 Comments || Top||

Army advances on militants in Nahr al-Bared
BEIRUT: The army stepped up its offensive on the northern refugee camp of Nahr al-Bared on Monday, moving in closer to the base of the Fatah al-Islam militants still holed up inside the camp. In addition, mainstream Fatah commander Sultan Abu al-Aynan voiced his optimism for a quick end to the battle. Army troops are "moving forward. We are controlling more buildings by the day, after clearing them of unexploded ordnance and booby-traps," an army official said on Monday.

"The gunmen now only control about 15,000 square meters," compared to 22,500 square meters last Friday and 45,000 square meters a week before then, he added.
Squeezing them into a smaller and smaller pocket
In a statement issued for the 62nd anniversary of the founding of the Lebanese Army, commander General Michel Suleiman praised his troops for their efforts. "I want you to rest assured that all the sacrifices made by you and your fellow martyrs in the North have helped to draw a line in blood between a unified country and one in chaos and loss, between a Lebanon unique in the world and a Lebanon as a continuous ground for battle," he said. "On your behalf, I salute all those innocent martyrs who have sacrificed their lives for the Lebanese people in the battle for dignity and national sovereignty," he added.

The army has spent the last two weeks advancing slowly through the camp, clearing land mines and booby-traps before humanitarian organizations enter to assess needs for the post-conflict reconstruction. A soldier was killed late Sunday night in the battle, bringing the total number of army deaths to 123. Monday saw an increase in artillery fire exchanged between the militants and the army, as the latter pushed on with its house-to-house battle.

According to witnesses in the area, the army renewed its call through loudspeakers for the militants to surrender or to allow their families to leave the camp. The gunmen so far have refused to surrender, instead vowing to fight to the death. Fatah al-Islam spokesman Abu Salim Taha has warned the militants would send suicide bombers against the army if the offensive continues.

In other developments, Aynayn said the Lebanese Army's delay in resolving the confrontation with the Fatah al-Islam militants was a result of the army's concern for the civilian population. He added that he was confident the army would end the battle in a short time. "The members of the Abssi gang left in the Nahr al-Bared camp have reached a minimum," he said, referring to Fatah al-Islam leader Shaker al-Abssi. Speaking at a news conference at his headquarters south of Tyre on Monday, Aynayn estimated Fatah al-Islam's casualties at 75.

Another reason for the delay, he added, was the Lebanese Army's lack of information regarding the camp's geography and structure. "The reason why the PLO [Palestine Liberation Organization] did not assist the army in terminating the Abssi gang is due to various impediments set forth by some Palestinian forces in the country," he said. Aynayn stressed that the PLO would no longer wait for consensus regarding the handling of similar situations in any other camp.
Posted by: || 07/31/2007 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [430 views] Top|| File under: Fatah al-Islam

#1  General Michel Suleiman better watch his lip or he'll be getting a special greeting from the Syrians.
Posted by: Howard UK || 07/31/2007 3:16 Comments || Top||

#2  Do we actually have any reports from a relaible observer that there's actually any fighting there?
Posted by: gromgoru || 07/31/2007 5:54 Comments || Top||

#3  How tightly do you have to squeeze FaI militants before nuclear detonation occurs?
Posted by: Glenmore || 07/31/2007 7:08 Comments || Top||

#4  Army advances on militants in Nahr al-Bared...

...with fixed bayonets.

/we wish.

Posted by: Seafarious || 07/31/2007 11:28 Comments || Top||

#5  Its now just about 3 football field side by side....

It shouldn't be that hard to just put a shell every ten meters over about 15 mins....
Just walk the arty through it.

What's the problem?

Posted by: 3dc || 07/31/2007 16:14 Comments || Top||

#6  Hell just crash a few burning gasoline tanker trucks on the uphill side...
Posted by: 3dc || 07/31/2007 16:16 Comments || Top||

Good morning!
Banglacourt grants interim bail to Hasina Army advances on militants in Nahr al-BaredTaleban say kill second SKorean hostageSecurity forces killed Mehsud, claims cousinObituary: Ingmar Bergman Obituary: Ingmar Bergman Resistance™ is 'legitimate right™': Palestinian PMATC releases 18 people Pakistan polio case in Australia
Posted by: Fred || 07/31/2007 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [459 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Dont know where else to post this. Hope someone notes it and understands it.

posted to me by an associate in our line of work...

Your theory about the Straits may become a reality.... the satellite imagery available for the Straites has suddenly jumped in quality, a BIG jump. The military has caused it. They want fine detail.

That means someone is looking, casing the joint...

I've been looking through some satellite imagery of the region and normally the images are grainy low-res stuff (10 to 20 meter).... but here recently certain key areas have been bumped to 1-2 meter resolution. As you may already know, DoD doesn't own any satellite imaging device and instead chooses to farm the stuff out to private firms (cheaper in the long run for the DoD, as the private firm can also use the devices for domestic surveying purposes and the extra money they make can put better satellites in orbit... blah blah).

So back to the 2 meter stuff. Here are the areas of interest... all in or near Khuzestan province:

Bandar-e Khomeyni (main rail line in Iran runs from this port town all the way through Tehran to the Caspian) ( This will have airstrikes its entire length)
Ahvaz ( troop staging are)
Tabareh aka Omidiyeh Military Base( troop marshaling area )
The coastline near 30 09' N 41 29'E digging all the way up to Omidiyeh (air strike to the military base? Checking for SAM sites?)
The border of Iran and Iraq near Al-Basrah, aka Khorramshahr and Abadan
Kharag Island. ( launch sites from Intell on the ground )
Bushehr, specifically the airport( If we take Bushehr we will occupy it until we make sure its a done deal)
Abu Musa Island and the Island situated directly to west... both with airstrips ( we are going to be doing troopp airlifts from the look of it)
The coastline between Bandar-e Chiru and Bandar-e Magam... aka Dehriz (another airstrip on this island and some oil storage) and Hendarabi Island
Larak Island and Qeshm
The shipping port near Gachin-e pa'in( we will be bringing in Naval Logistics for a land Operation )
The dirt farming towns of Khvorgu, Chahestan, Pohst Kooh just to the north and east of....
... Bander Abbas, particularly the port on the west side and the airstrip on the east.

That's it. I expect CARNIVORE to pick this up and a knock on my door later today. CARNIVORE will be contacting you as well.

Alert our friends that this is one of the five signs we talked about. Moving the Stealth Squadrons will be another. Expect it. The other two signs will be here in the States. You know what to look for...

The last to move will be the two Armored Divisions we discussed up to south of Kirkuk. When they get their Staging Orders ..its on.
Posted by: Angleton 9 || 07/31/2007 0:22 Comments || Top||

#2  Uh-huh. Sure, Skippy.
Posted by: Steve White || 07/31/2007 0:37 Comments || Top||

#3  #1 - It means "Be sure to drink more Ovaltine."
Posted by: PBMcL || 07/31/2007 1:20 Comments || Top||

#4  If that's Lon Chaney, then the pic is from a very old film. Way before Steinbeck's "Of Mice and Men."
Posted by: McZoid || 07/31/2007 5:03 Comments || Top||

#5  Skippy - that sounds like like bad stuff you're dropping there. Careful.
Posted by: Graish Protector of the Wee Folk5492 || 07/31/2007 5:06 Comments || Top||

#6  Angleton. It's obvious. Read between the lines.
Posted by: tu3031 || 07/31/2007 8:08 Comments || Top||

#7  As you may already know, DoD doesn't own any satellite imaging device and instead chooses to farm the stuff out to private firms

Not to rain on this conspiratorial parade, but the National Reconnaissance Office claims to build and operate satellites. On their web site, they say they are a DoD agency. Could just be typical BushCheneyRovian maskirova for the Halliburton Satellite Imaging Division, of course.

Resolution of 1-2 meters sounds like commercial stuff (Spot, etc). May some business or nation without sats is interested in the area?
Posted by: SteveS || 07/31/2007 9:55 Comments || Top||

#8  Skippy, I will be in Vienna meeting with George Smiley and will pass on your concerns and analysis. This looks like a go for us but the Brits are not convinced yet. Will you be copying Vlad?
Posted by: Richard Helms || 07/31/2007 12:17 Comments || Top||

#9  Angleton 9:
One of the things that makes Rantburg so great is that there are among our members people who have done just about everything. Having been in the reconnaissance business for over 20 years before I retired, I find most of what you write a load of bull. While the areas you say new imagery covers is interesting, there are a dozen possible explanations, only one or two of which include bombings, invasion, or attacks of any kind. I do think a nice read of the book "Deep Black" would give you a better understanding of US (and many foreign) imaging capabilities. I can't/won't confirm any of the details the author presents, but there's enough information there that's verifyable elsewhere to prove most of your blather is NOT based on professional experience.
Posted by: Old Patriot || 07/31/2007 12:26 Comments || Top||

#10  In fairness, Old Patriot, Angleton 9 didn't write it, he/she just posted it from a colleague to get our feedback. It is comforting to know that the pictures taken for the military don't just show up for the civilian market at the same time. (That is what you're saying, right?)

But what is CARNIVORE, and why would Angleton 9's colleague do something to provoke a visit from it?
Posted by: trailing wife || 07/31/2007 15:33 Comments || Top||

#11  But what is CARNIVORE


Its a packet sniffer at the FBI for tapping into internet conversations, etc. I think these two and their friends are a bunch of amatuer CIA agents in the disguise of temporal idiots. Like OP said a lot of their stuff is blather. FBI/NSA/CIA/NRO don't do blather, they leave that up to the Rantburgers.
Posted by: Jack is Back! || 07/31/2007 16:46 Comments || Top||

#12  I've talked to him Mr. Helms, I so hate to bother Mr. Smiley when he's at Bayreuth.
Posted by: Palfrey || 07/31/2007 16:56 Comments || Top||

#13  CARNIVORE is an FBI packet sniffer? Thanks, Jack is Back. Those poor analysts must be drowning these days -- I hope there's a second tier to sift out the worst of the silliness. Still, couldn't that be prevented by sitting at the same lunch table in the company cafeteria? On the other hand, it would be lovely if an FBI sniffer followed Angleton 9's keystrokes to Rantburg and then got in touch with some of the more knowledgeable posters...

Angleton 9 dear, do you think your colleague is quite ready to know about Rantburg? You may want to warn him/her they can be a bit rough, but you know they teach those willing to learn and listen to those with the expertise to back up their assertions... and tear trolls to teeny, tiny bits. When first I dared to start posting, I mostly asked questions, and they were really quite wonderful about answering even the most naive and silly. :-D
Posted by: Snotch Grundy3019 || 07/31/2007 17:40 Comments || Top||

#14  Yes, as the above poster sez. We also have high tea from time to time. We don't invite Flagg of course, that would be wrong.
Posted by: Palfrey || 07/31/2007 17:43 Comments || Top||

#15  Actually it's only regular tea, Palfrey dear, with little sweet and savoury things but no beans on toast. And lurkers have been known to introduce themselves there, which is great fun. Clearly I shall have to have another tea party here, soon.
Posted by: trailing wife || 07/31/2007 18:00 Comments || Top||

#16  But keep it under the rose.

You haven't seen me.
Posted by: Flagg || 07/31/2007 19:57 Comments || Top||

#17  Isn't this the same guy that taught us all how to break someones neck and our shoulders all in one fluid move?

Anyway, as a clown, I don't know anything about what is in that message. However, it seems ludicrous to me that DoD has been looking down at Iran with 20 meter resolution. Which would, unfortunately, be believeable.

I hope we are in the cone of silence.
Posted by: Mike N. || 07/31/2007 20:41 Comments || Top||

#18  The Khuzestan Province Gambit has been a staple of the anti-war factions
and various amateur analysts since at least, oh, 2003 or so. Maybe earlier.
Posted by: Pappy || 07/31/2007 22:23 Comments || Top||

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Two weeks of WOT
Tue 2007-07-31
  Taleban kill second SKorean hostage
Mon 2007-07-30
  ISAF: Chairman of Taliban military council banged in Helmand
Sun 2007-07-29
  Perv to retire as Army Chief, stay as President, Bhutto to be PM
Sat 2007-07-28
  New PA platform omits 'armed struggle'
Fri 2007-07-27
  50 Iraq football fans killed in car bombs
Thu 2007-07-26
  Iraq: Khalis tribal leaders sign peace agreement
Wed 2007-07-25
  U.S., Iranian envoys meet in Baghdad
Tue 2007-07-24
  Abdullah Mehsud: Dead again
Mon 2007-07-23
  Summer Offensive: More than 50 Talibs killed in Afghanistan
Sun 2007-07-22
  N. Wazoo Peace Jirga Rocketed
Sat 2007-07-21
  Afghan Talibs kidnap 23 S. Koreans
Fri 2007-07-20
  6 dead in rocket attack on Somali peace conference
Thu 2007-07-19
  Hek declares ceasefire
Wed 2007-07-18
  Qaida in Iraq Big Turban Captured
Tue 2007-07-17
  Bombs kill at least 80 in Kirkuk

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