Betrayed in Iraq

Dandelion Salad

TheRealNews on Mar 30, 2009

Leila Fadel: Leaders of Awakening Councils are arrested, tortured and killed by Iraq government


Betrayed in Iraq

Leila Fadel: Leaders of Awakening Councils are arrested, tortured and killed by Iraq government

Violence is escalating in Baghdad as the Iraqi government continues to detain leaders of the Sons of Iraq.

The Sons of Iraq is a group of former fighters who have turned on Al Qaeda and have been supporting the US. The Maliki government is uncomfortable with the power the leaders of the group have gained after being recruited and paid by US troops to patrol neighborhoods.

The government is trying to weaken these groups who were promised by the US their previous crimes and violence would be forgotten. However, the Iraqi government did not forget and is continuing to arrest and detain leaders, forcing many of them into exile.

The Awakening Councils of the Sons of Iraq have been suppressing Al Qaeda forces, but as their movement is weakened by the recent arrests, concerns of other extremist forces arise.

“One of the concerns is that these guys themselves were the extremist forces in the streets and once you started giving them cash, they stopped,” said Leila Fadel, Baghdad Bureau Chief at the McClatchy Newspapers. “The other issue is that if they’re not in the streets that the more extremist forces… will become more powerful in the streets because they’re not out there watching.”

Although the amount of people being detained is not large, the government has targeted significant members of the movement.

“It isn’t a hundred thousand people being detained, but there are hundreds of them… and the people that are being detained or are in exile were the ones that were the faces of the movement when it was really dangerous, when if you joined the police, you were killed, when there were headless bodies in the streets of Diyala Province.”

Watch full coverage of the story on our website:…


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