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Iraqi journalist slain; educators targeted; US tank on fire; and more

Truth about Iraqis

March 10, 2006

Yet another Iraqi journalist has been killed.

Munsuf Abdallah al-Khaldi, 35, a Baghdad TV presenter was on his way to Mosul to interview three poets for his cultural TV show.

Reuters carried a statement from the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists saying al-Khaldi had been shot dead by unidentified gunmen while driving from the Iraqi capital.

This comes less than a month after the killing of Atwar Bahjat, Al-Arabiya's correspondent in Sammara.

Two Iraqi journalists Rim Zeid and Marwan Khazaal who were kidnapped in January still remain unaccounted for. Nothing has been heard from their captors.

Freelancer Jill Carroll's deadline passed on February 26. No word has been heard from her or her captors since although Iraqi officials have said she is alive.

Iraqi educators targeted

Meanwhile, a prominent professor of Arabic language at Basra University barely escaped an assassination attempt on Wednesday.

Dr. Amjad Kamil al-Uthman was fired upon by unknown assailants in a truck. Last year, another professor of Arab language was killed in Basra University. Are we to learn Farsi instead?

According to Association of University Lecturers in Iraq, 182 Iraqi university professors and academis have been killed since the US invasion.

Some 85 senior academics have been kidnapped or survived assassination attempts, the group said.

The attacks have led to an exodus of Iraqi academics who are vital to educating and rebuilding the war-damaged country.

"What is going on in Iraq against these professors is a real war crime," Dr Isam Kadhem Al-Rawi, head of the association and Professor in Earth Sciences at the University of Baghdad, told Reuters.

Hoping to raise international awareness of the crimes committed against Iraqi academics, the Brussels Tribunal now has a FAQ section on their efforits (see: http://www.brusselstribunal.org/AcademicsFAQ.htm)

They are also distributing questionnaire forms and collecting completed questionnaires in order to get detailed information on the circumstances of the assassinations. These questionnaires will be presented to the Special Rapporteur on Summary Executions in Geneva, who is already aware of the action and supporting it.

The questionnaire forms are available on the website in English and Arabic and in Word and pdf format.

http://www.brusselstribunal.org/academicsQuestionnaires.htm

They are appealing, if you have any chance to get it to relatives, colleagues, etc… of assassinated academics, or to academics that have been threatened, this would be most helpful to us. We hope to collect at least 50 individual files to add to the dossier that will be submitted to the special rapporteur.

US officials sound off pessimism

Despite the best efforts of some media persons to spin a good face on what is happening in Iraq, and the comments of US General Peter Pace that things were "very, very good" in Iraq, other officials have sounded ominous tones.

US ambassador to Iraq Zalmay Khalilzad (Zal) told the media that the US opened "the Pandora's box" when it sought regime change in Iraq and removed Saddam Hussein and the Baathists from power.

The Los Angeles Time had this to say: "The ambassador's dire talk of a possible worst-case scenario in Iraq that would make Taliban Afghanistan "look like child's play" is in stark contrast to the president's consistently rosy platitudes about the marvels of an emerging democracy on the Tigris."

The LA Times's dismay aside, could it be an indication that Zal will be replaced in Iraq? hmmm ...

Facing a Senate Appropriations Committee, Rumsfeld also had something eerie to say:

"The plan is to prevent a civil war, and to the extent one were to occur, to have the — from a security standpoint — have the Iraqi security forces deal with it, to the extent they are able to."

Does this mean Rumsfeld does not rule out a civil war.

General Abizaid said it was not his impression that Iraq was not heading towards a civil war but that sectarian violence had increased significantly.

An AP-IPSOS Poll found 77% of Americans believe a civil war is likely.

Maybe the pollsters should have taken time to conduct a similar poll for Iraqis. After all, it is their country.

Or, isn't it.

The picture you see to the left is of a US tank targeted by a powerful roadside bomb.

The New York Post's Ralph Peters was not on board when he gave his rosy assessment of events in Iraq.

Be sure to check the right-column for updated pictures, links, quotes and Iraqi Truisms


:: Article nr. 21411 sent on 11-mar-2006 01:13 ECT

www.uruknet.info?p=21411

Link: truth-about-iraqis.blogspot.com/2006/03/iraqi-journalist-slain-educators.html#li
   nks




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