posted on Aug, 5 2004 @ 12:27 PM
An American helicopter has been downed by heavy arms fire over the holy city of Najaf. The crew of the helicopter were wounded but were recovered and
evacuated shortly after the crash. They are expected to make a fully recovery. The chopper was downed by fighters loyal to Moqtada al-Sadr. And in the
southern city of Basra, which is in British control, we saw a quick escalation in violence due to the shooting of 2 Iraqi's by British servicemen.
This violence may cause a new period of insurrection by militiamen in the region.
Shiite Muslim cleric Moqtada al-Sadr called for a national uprising against the U.S. and allied military forces as a two-month cease-fire between the
two sides collapsed, the New York Times reported.Please visit the link provided for the complete story.
After a brief period of peace there has been a sudden escalation in violence towards Allied troops. The fighting in the city has been the heaviest
seen since a "rebellion" by forces loyal to al-Sadr in April & May. Al-Sadr's "Mehdi army" were responsible for a series of brutal gunfights in
the past months and it is unknown if we will return to the state we saw in Fallujah.
An aide to Iraq's most revered Shi'ite cleric,
Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, said Sistani was receiving treatment in Najaf for heart problems and the clashes could affect his health.Please visit the link provided for the complete story.
It is believed the failing health or death of Iraq's leading Shi'ite Ayatollah may ignite a nationwide power struggle. If this were to happen we may
see a new leader uniting the militia's and "armies" against coalition forces, a nightmare scenario for leading planners.
Moqtada al-Sadr Leader of the Mehdi army
"Fight the blasphemous, fight the Americans''
Calls for Jihad against British forces in Basra have ignited futher clashes across the city as darkness falls. While it is unclear if we'll see a
full scale escalation in tensions after this incident we can be sure that reprisal attacks will take place over the next few days. What has really
ignited tensions is accusations that British forces attacked first. Calls for "holy war" have been limited only to British forces in the region in
order to drive a wedge between the occupation forces and the newly installed "Government" of Iraq.
Sources & Reading
[edit on 5-8-2004 by Nerdling]