posted on Jun, 8 2005 @ 10:25 PM
The failed siege of Fallujah
By Dahr Jamail
AMMAN, Jordan - After two devastating sieges of Fallujah in April and November of 2004, which left thousands of Iraqis dead and hundreds of thousands
without homes, the aftermath of the US attempt to rid the city of resistance fighters in an effort to improve security in the country continues to
plague the residents of Fallujah, and Iraq as a whole.
Meanwhile, Nawaf continues to look for his three brothers who remain missing. The US military painted on his home that three bodies were found there,
but Nawaf has been unable to locate them and insists they remain missing.
Recent clashes and roadside bombs in Fallujah have greatly impeded any return to normalcy within the city, along with ongoing complaints from
residents of harassment and poor treatment from the security forces. Thus reconstruction, as important as it is for the city, remains in the
background for residents who continue to testify of alleged war crimes during the most recent siege, as well as seething resentment over the
destruction and lack of rebuilding in their city.
"There are plenty of women in Fallujah who have testified they were raped by American soldiers," said Abdulla. "They are nearby the secondary
school for girls inside Fallujah. When people came back to Fallujah the first time they found so many girls who were totally naked and they had been
As Nawaf's situation shows, the number of missing people remains one of the larger concerns. "We don't have a total number of people killed because
so many people are missing ... this makes it impossible for now to get an accurate count of the dead," said Abdulla.
Another Iraqi doctor who is a member of an Iraqi medical team that also investigates human-rights issues, reported that his group estimates that
60,000 Iraqis are in detention facilities throughout Iraq. During the interview in Amman, he said the US military had only registered the names of
17,000 detainees; they are being held without charges and their whereabouts unknown, even to their families. Speaking on condition of anonymity, the
doctor said, "Of course this only pushes people more towards the resistance, because people are eventually left desperate enough to begin fighting
the Americans. People can only take so much."
Dr Fawzi, who is also reporting to the SCHRDF, expressed concern about the number of people missing from Fallujah. "For deaths, we counted over 750
at first," he commented. "There are so many missing people and it is so difficult to have the figures of dead and detained, even though we know so
many more were killed. People are afraid to admit their son might be detained because the Americans might arrest or retaliate against the rest of the
Thus, the suffering of the residents of Fallujah continues as fighting simmers once again within the devastated city and the drastic heat of summer
"The Americans have committed a very big massacre to the people of Fallujah. The crime of Fallujah is the greatest crime ever," Abdulla said
sternly. "This will remain as a black spot in American history forever. Whatever the American people will do, even if they get rid of those liars who
are in their government, they will need a long time for people to forget what they have done in Iraq and in Fallujah in order for us to deal with them
as a civilized people who have humanity."
Abdulla, like residents of the city, wondered why the US military will not let unembedded media into Fallujah. "Why have they not let the media
inside Fallujah," he asked. "If America says she is right, then why did she stop two UN investigators from getting inside Fallujah?"
Shortly after the US presidential elections, the US Marines launched a month-long massacre to reclaim Falluja from separatists.