Photo: A partial view of
To our Muslim readers: Ramadan Mubarak
REPORTS – LIFE IN
A delegation of Iraqi bishops representing the country’s multifarious denominations has given a tragic picture of conditions in
For the battered working-class district of Abu Dshir, Ramadan evenings bring a rare air of festivity. The temperature is still warm, but the heat of summer has abated. Families stroll outdoors, and young men play nightly matches of a traditional Ramadan game called mihaidis, in which teams try to find a hidden ring. As the teams lined up Thursday for the game, neighborhood residents said, a crowd of men gathered to watch. They lighted a large oil lamp which illuminated the street, a small shopping area where grocers and fruit vendors stay open late this time of year. Two American helicopters hovered overhead, witnesses said. Moments after the game began, the helicopters opened fire on the crowd, the witnesses said. Seven men were killed, Sayyid Malik Abadi, the head of the district security committee, who arrived at the scene shortly after the episode, said Friday. He said perhaps an eighth man had died as well, but too many body parts were scattered about to be certain exactly how many were killed.
“The helicopters watched, and they thought it was a gathering and fired on it,” Mr. Abadi said. “They fired rockets. When people started to run, the helicopters’ machine guns began shooting at the people who were running.” The American military had a different version of events, which took place in the Saha part of the Abu Dshir district. A spokesman said that earlier in the evening American forces had twice observed episodes when two or three men fired mortars into the neighborhood to the north. After the second episode, the military called for an airstrike. “We assess possibly two or three were killed or wounded,” said Maj. Brad Leighton, a spokesman for the multinational forces in
Introduction – Special Report: Media in
Jawad al-Daami was a well-known poet and line producer for al-Baghdadia, an independent channel based in
As a reporter for a US-backed radio station in the southern city of
News organisations aligning themselves with ethnic-based and religious parties are inflaming tensions in
Iraqi newspapers on Tuesday highlighted reactions to the "non-binding" resolution approved by the U.S. Senate on Wednesday calling for dividing
The editor-in-chief of al-Mada newspaper played down the value of documents confiscated by Iraqi army forces on Tuesday, however he called for their return, denying any connection between the raid on the paper's office and the corruption case the newspaper unveiled in early 2004. "A
Bad hygiene in several Iraqi prisons has caused prisoners to become infected with scabies, and no treatment is being given, according to a non-governmental organisation (NGO) dealing with prisoners. “At least four Iraqi prisons have been infected with scabies as a result of bad hygiene,” said Khalid Rabia’a, a spokesman for the local NGO Prisoners’ Association for Justice (PAJ). “The problem has been identified in Ministry of Interior prisons but we don’t yet know if it also exists in prisons run by the
Scabies is a contagious infection caused by a mite which in turn causes intense itching and inflammation. Most commonly affected by scabies are the hands and feet, the inner part of the wrists, and the folds under the arms. It may also affect other parts of the body, particularly the elbows and areas around the breasts, genitals, navel and buttocks. Scabies is usually transmitted by skin-to-skin contact and spreads more easily in crowded conditions. Infections are treated by the application of medicated cream or lotion to the skin all over the body to kill the mites.
Two US Army subcontractors accused of torturing prisoners at Baghdad's Abu Ghraib jail go to court Wednesday in a case that highlights the murky legal status of private US companies in Iraq. Titan and CACI International were hired by the Army to provide interrogators and interpreters at the notorious prison, the scene of well-documented abuses of detainees following the US-led invasion of
…..My husband distanced himself from me for a month after I was kidnapped and my mother still blames me for ruining the family. I open my eyes. I see the gun by my bed. My husband and I no longer talk, nor do we laugh together. We worry someone will attack us. I used to watch out of the window and feel alive. Now I make sure my face is hidden by the curtain. I look with longing at the street that was alive once upon a time.
REPORTS – IRAQI MILITIAS, POLITICIANS, POWER BROKERS
The Iraqi parliament voted on a statement issued by its leadership in which it expressed its categorical rejection and condemnation of a U.S. Senate resolution calling to divide
Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki reiterated his government's rejection of a U.S. Senate resolution calling for separate Sunni Arab, Shiite and Kurdish federal regions in Iraq and called on his British counterpart to support Iraq's stance against any resolution that "does not serve Iraq and the region," according to a statement released by al-Maliki's office on Tuesday.
Companies involved in two of the production-sharing contracts have been announced: a subsidiary of the Canadian firm Heritage Oil and Gas and a subsidiary of the French firm Perenco
REPORTS – US/UK/OTHERS IN
American and coalition troops have reported killing and capturing more suspected insurgents in the first half of 2007 than in any other similar period of the
Between April 2003 and June 2004, $12 billion in U.S. currency—much of it belonging to the Iraqi people—was shipped from the Federal Reserve to Baghdad, where it was dispensed by the Coalition Provisional Authority. Some of the cash went to pay for projects and keep ministries afloat, but, incredibly, at least $9 billion has gone missing, unaccounted for, in a frenzy of mismanagement and greed. Following a trail that leads from a safe in one of Saddam's palaces to a house near
The ties between State and Blackwater are only part of a web of relationships that Blackwater has maintained with the Bush administration and with prominent Republicans. From 2001 to 2007, the firm has increased its annual federal contracts from less than $1 million to more than $500 million, all while employees passed through a turnstile between Blackwater and the administration, several leaving important posts in the Pentagon and the CIA to take jobs at the security company. Below is a list of some of Blackwater's luminaries with their professional -- and political -- résumés. Erik Prince, founder and CEO: How did Blackwater go from a small corporation training local SWAT teams to a seemingly inseparable part of
Prince, who founded Blackwater in 1996 but reportedly took a behind-the-scenes role in the company until after 9/11, has connections to the Republican Party in his blood. His late father, auto-parts magnate Edgar Prince, was instrumental in the creation of the Family Research Council, one of the right-wing Christian groups most influential with the George W. Bush administration. At his funeral in 1995, he was eulogized by two stalwarts of the Christian conservative movement, James Dobson and Gary Bauer. Edgar Prince's widow, Elsa, who remarried after her husband's death, has served on the boards of the FRC and another influential Christian-right organization, Dobson's Focus on the Family. She currently runs the Edgar and Elsa Prince Foundation, where, according to IRS filings, her son Erik is a vice president. The foundation has given lavishly to some of the marquee names of the Christian right. Between July 2003 and July 2006, the foundation gave at least $670,000 to the FRC and $531,000 to Focus on the Family.
The UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) is continuing to push for “humanitarian visas” for Iraqi refugees after
The number of Iraqis driven from their homes by war and sectarian violence could be far larger than official estimates of the country's deepening humanitarian crisis, some experts say. The U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees and the Iraqi Red Crescent estimate that more than 4.2 million Iraqis have been displaced from their homes within the country or have crossed
The killing of 11 civilians in
"Most of the laws passed by Paul Bremer, the civilian administrator of
Quote of the day: "You know your country is dying when you have to make a distinction between what is moral and ethical, and what is legal." -- John De Armond