Apologies to all non-US readers for not mentioning that this blog would not be updated during the Thanksgiving holiday. And I hope those in the US and abroad who did celebrate Thanksgiving, had a good one. Welcome back. On to the entry...
The Washington Post is carrying a story on how in the aftermath of the Thursday bombings –the worst incident of violence since the invasion- it was the Mahdi Army (Muqtada Al Sadr’s militia) that came to the rescue.
"On Thursday afternoon, bombs in six parked cars began detonating at 15-minute intervals in three sections of
, including the crowded Jamila Market. Mahdi Army militiamen quickly spread out around the vast slum, residents said. Sadr City
They helped the injured into cars and carted the dead to funeral homes, where the corpses would be cleansed according to Muslim rituals. Some donated blood and helped fire fighters douse flames. Other militiamen, some clutching AK-47 assault rifles or rocket-propelled grenades, searched for the perpetrators of the bombings. They found one more car, filled with explosives, and took the driver into custody.
, militiamen assisted doctors and nurses, carrying patients into emergency rooms, Abid said. With hospital supplies thin, Sadr officials sent over syringes, medicines and other equipment donated by merchants. And with only four ambulances in circulation, most of the wounded were being brought in cars." Khadisiya Hospital
As many of the residents of
What the article fails to mention and, in fact implies otherwise, is that the Mahdi Army has been supporting the people of
The longer the government fails to provide basic services to its people the closer the Iraqi people will grow to the militias. In fact one resident of Sadr City explained that the events of Thursday prove that:
"there is no need to disarm the Mahdi Army. If they were not there yesterday, it would have been a disaster."
Assuming its not too late, the
Though recent polls suggest that most Iraqis have faith in PM Maliki, it is not at all unbelievable to think that as long as the Mahdi Army acts as a surrogate government to the people of