"Kerry: Will move fast on national security"
Monday, November 1, 2004
"Kerry said he is not concerned that President Bush is
preparing an attack in the Iraqi city of Fallujah,
which could be carried out with Bush as a lame duck
before Kerry takes office on January 20."
Fallujah Braces for Imminent US Onslaught
By Mazen Ghazi, IOL Correspondent
October 31, 2004
US occupation forces prepare massive onslaught on Fallujah
BAGHDAD, October 31 (IslamOnline.net) - One day after
the Association of Muslim Scholars (AMS), Iraq's
highest Sunni religious authority, warned that an
onslaught on Fallujah would break loose the doors of
hell, interim Prime Minister Ayad Allawi said the
standoff entered its "final phase."
Reports of the imminent offensive, the second on the
west Baghdad city since the fall of the country in the
hands of the US-led occupation troops forced many to
flee Fallujah, leaving the city virtually deserted.
Life has almost come to a standstill.
"The city has become deserted," Khalaf Sobhi, for fled
Fallujah and is currently in Baghdad, told
He added that many districts in the city were
completely destroyed including the Golan neighborhood,
where he used to live.
"The Americans insist on bombarding the Golan area,
though they have demolished most of its houses and the
majority of residents have left," he said.
IOL correspondent says that more than 70% of
Fallujah's 300,000 population have left during
On Friday, October 29, a senior American military
spokesman admitted that the city's population went
down to between 50,000 and 60,000 people.
Mosques of Fallujah
have been unusually deserted during the Muslim holy
month this year as people either fled the city or kept
to their homes.
Other residents who fled to Baghdad said the Americans
were allowing people to leave Fallujah, probably to
have a free reign in the city.
The US occupation forces have been encircling Fallujah
since October 14 and are taking their positions around
Iraqi resistance fighters, however, vowed to stay
their grounds and defend their city against the
They are reinforcing their positions and stockpiling
enough food and water supplies, sources close to the
resistance told IOL.
They said the Fallujah resistance fighters are in high
spirits and are poised for die-hard battle with the US
The city is now under the control of Fallujah
Mujahdeen Shura Council, an umbrella of resistance
groups, added the sources.
In a statement dated October 15, the council called on
all Iraqi resistance groups to cut off supplies from
the US forces if they storm Fallujah.
The city has been coming under repeated US attacks
under claims of harboring anti-US foreign fighters.
In April, at least 700 Iraqis, mostly women and
], were killed and 1,500 others injured in Fallujah
when the US occupation forces imposed a tight siege on
the town and intensified air strikes on its
On September 18, Amnesty International blasted the US
for its barbaric [
] on Fallujah.
In a related development, Allawi said the Fallujah
standoff has entered its "final phase," warning of
imminent military action.
"We have entered the final phase to solve the Fallujah
problem," he Allawi.
"If we cannot solve it peacefully, I have no choice
but to take military action. I will do so with a heavy
Allawi claimed that "terrorists have taken the people
of Fallujah hostage and we are determined to eliminate
this terror centre."
He laid out three conditions that would spare Fallujah
and other cities military action.
These include the exit of foreign and Iraqi fighters,
the handover of heavy- and medium-sized weapons and
allowing the government to begin the process of
reconstruction in these cities.
"The people of Fallujah can handover the foreign
fighters and insurgents, kick them out or allow Iraqi
forces to go in and do the job," said Allawi in a
Negotiations between the US-backed interim government
and delegates from the town collapsed in mid-October
after Allawi threatened the city with invasion if it
did not surrender Iraq's most wanted man, Abu Musab
The Fallujah people have repeatedly maintained that
they did not harbor [
] the wanted man.
The Association of Muslim Scholars said Saturday,
October 30, the negotiations were just an attempt to
buy more time for the US forces to prepare a new
massive attack on the city.
"The Americans will invade Fallujah and negotiations
were a mere US plan to win more time to complete
military preparations," said ASM spokesman Mohammed
He accused members of the Iraqi government of "
intentionally or unintentionally helping the Americans
realize this goal."
The ASM spokesm warned that an American onslaught on
the city would incite tension in the war-torn country
and break loose the doors of hell.
"Attacking Fallujah would trigger a crisis in the
city. The government should realize that such attacks
would not stop terrorism as they claim."
He stressed that the US attacks on Samarra and Tel
Afar had not stopped the unabated resistance against
the US occupation forces.
Hundreds of Iraqi [
] civilians have been killed and injured when a
massive force of 3,000 American troops and 2,000 Iraqi
National guardsmen stormed Samarra on September 30,
allegedly to regain control before the general
elections, scheduled for January.
The Fallujah Muslim scholars threatened on Friday,
October 15, to declare Jihad across Iraq if the US
occupation forces stormed the city.
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