Nasty Letters To Crooked Politicians

As we enter a new era of politics, we hope to see that Obama has the courage to fight the policies that Progressives hate. Will he have the fortitude to turn the economic future of America to help the working man? Or will he turn out to be just a pawn of big money, as he seems to be right now.

Friday, December 03, 2004

Our Hideous Lying Chimp_junta continues Exploitation of Iraqi Innocents

** Dahr Jamail's Iraq Dispatches **
** **
December 03, 2004

Fallujah Refugees Tell of Life and Death in the Kill Zone

The NewStandard
by Dahr Jamail

*Journalists and residents who have fled Fallujah share accounts of US
troops killing unarmed and wounded people; Dahr Jamail continues
interviewing survivors as images of a city under US assault further emerge.*

Baghdad , Dec 3 - Men now seeking refuge in the Baghdad area are telling
horrific stories of indiscriminate killings by US forces during the peak
of fighting last month in the largely annihilated city of Fallujah.

In an interview with The NewStandard, Burhan Fasa’a, an Iraqi journalist
who works for the popular Lebanese satellite TV station, LBC, said he
witnessed US crimes up close. Burhan Fasa’a, who was in Fallujah for
nine days during the most intense combat, said Americans grew easily
frustrated with Iraqis who could not speak English.

"Americans did not have interpreters with them," Fasa’a said, "so they
entered houses and killed people because they didn’t speak English. They
entered the house where I was with 26 people, and [they] shot people
because [the people] didn’t obey [the soldiers’] orders, even just
because the people couldn’t understand a word of English."

A man named Khalil, who asked The NewStandard not to use his last name
for fear of reprisals, said he had witnessed the shooting of civilians
who were waving white flags while they tried to escape the city.
Fasa’a further speculated, "Soldiers thought the people were rejecting
their orders, so they shot them. But the people just couldn’t understand

Fasa’a says American troops detained him. They interrogated him
specifically about working for the Arab media, he said, and held him for
three days. Fasa’a and other prisoners slept on the ground with no
blankets. He said prisoners were made to go to the bathroom in
handcuffs, using one toilet in the middle of the camp.

"During the nine days I was in Fallujah, all of the wounded women, kids
and old people, none of them were evacuated," Fasa’a said. "They either
suffered to death, or somehow survived."

Many refugees tell stories of having witnessed US troops killing already
injured people, including former fighters and noncombatants alike.

"I watched them roll over wounded people in the street with tanks," said
Kassem Mohammed Ahmed, a resident of Fallujah. "This happened so many

Other refugees recount similar stories. "I saw so many civilians killed
there, and I

saw several tanks roll over the wounded in the streets," said Aziz
Abdulla, 27 years old, who fled the fighting last month. Another
resident, Abu Aziz, said he also witnessed American armored vehicles
crushing people he believes were alive.

Abdul Razaq Ismail, another resident who fled Fallujah, said: "I saw
dead bodies on the ground and nobody could bury them because of the
American snipers. The Americans were dropping some of the bodies into
the Euphrates near Fallujah."

A man called Abu Hammad said he witnessed US troops throwing Iraqi
bodies into the Euphrates River. Others nodded in agreement. Abu Hammed
and others also said they saw Americans shooting unarmed Iraqis who
waved white flags.

Believing that American and Iraqi forces were bent on killing anyone who
stayed in Fallujah, Hammad said he watched people attempt to swim across
the Euphrates to escape the siege. "Even then the Americans shot them
with rifles from the shore," he said. "Even if some of them were holding
a white flag or white clothes over their heads to show they are not
fighters, they were all shot."

Associated Press photographer Bilal Hussein reported witnessing similar
events. After running out of basic necessities and deciding to flee the
city at the height of the US-led assault, Hussein ran to the Euphrates.

"I decided to swim," Hussein told colleagues at the AP, who wrote up the
photographer’s harrowing story, "but I changed my mind after seeing US
helicopters firing on and killing people who tried to cross the river."

Hussein said he saw soldiers kill a family of five as they tried to
traverse the Euphrates, before he buried a man by the riverbank with his
bare hands.

"I kept walking along the river for two hours and I could still see some
US snipers ready to shoot anyone who might swim," Hussein recounted. "I
quit the idea of crossing the river and walked for about five hours
through orchards."

A man named Khalil, who asked The NewStandard not to use his last name
for fear of reprisals, said he had witnessed the shooting of civilians
who were waving white flags while they tried to escape the city. "They
shot women and old men in the streets," he said. "Then they shot anyone
who tried to get their bodies."

"There are bodies the Americans threw in the river," Khalil continued,
noting that he personally witnessed US troops using the Euphrates to
dispose of Iraqi dead. "And anyone who stayed thought they would be
killed by the Americans, so they tried to swim across the river. Even
people who couldn’t swim tried to cross the river. They drowned rather
than staying to be killed by the Americans," said Khalil.

US military commanders reported at least two incidents during which they
say Iraqi resistance fighters used white flags to lure Marines into
dangerous situations, including a well-orchestrated ambush.

Proponents of relaxed rules of engagement for US troops engaged in
"counter-insurgency" warfare have cited such incidents from last month’s
experience in Fallujah as arguments for more permissive combat
regulations. Some have said US forces should establish what used to be
called "free-fire zones," wherein any human being encountered is assumed
to be hostile, and thus a legitimate target, relieving American
infantrymen of their obligation to distinguish and protect civilians.
But if the stories Fallujan witnesses have shared with TNS are accurate,
it appears the policy might have preceded the argument in this case.

US and Iraqi officials have called the "pacification" of Fallujah a
success and said that the action was necessary to stabilize Iraq in
preparation for the country’s planned "transition to democracy." The
military continues to deny US-led forces killed significant numbers of
civilians during November’s nearly constant fighting and bombardment.


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