US Soldiers Danced Around Dead Iraqi Civilians: Report
HADITHA, Iraq, November 29, 2005 (IslamOnline.net)
Grinned US soldiers were dancing around bodies of
Iraqi civilians killed during a US-led onslaught on
the western city of Haditha, residents said on Monday,
"I saw US soldiers laughing and dancing around the
bodies of civilians killed in cold blood" a resident
identified as Goma Al-Hadithi told the London-based
Al-Quds Press news agency.
Occupation troops have killed in cold blood children,
women and elderly in their house-to-house pre-dawn
raids, he charged.
Al-Hadithi recalled that a week ago American troops
bombarded several houses, killing four entire families
just to avenge a nearby attack on a Humvee that left
one of their fellow soldiers dead.
"They then lifted some 40 bodies from pools of blood
and throw them in the yard of the Haditha hospital."
Hadithi, a former army officer, further charged that
US troops once ordered five youths to lie prone on the
ground before shooting them for no apparent reason.
US troops have been launching for months a series of
offensives on Sunni towns in the Anbar province on the
Euphrates to quell what they call raging "insurgency".
Haditha lies at the edge of Anbar, the heartland of
the resistance operations.
Operation Rivergate focused on Haditha and two nearby
towns in the Euphrates valley.
The Rivergate offensive, which started on the first
day of Ramadan on October 5, has left the Iraqi city
in ruins and destroyed its two main bridges, leaving
large parts practically inaccessible.
"People were taking pains in ferrying their wounded
relatives to the hospital through boats," Al-Hadithi
said. "One of my neighbors died because we could not
take him to hospital."
He accused the US occupation troops of adopting a
scorched-earth policy in Haditha.
"The bombardment and air strikes were so intense that
buildings were leveled to the ground and dozens were
trapped under the rubble due to the crippling curfew
from 18:00 pm to 08:00 am."
The curfew has also banned students from going to
their schools, putting their academic ambitions on
"The US blockade has closed almost all schools," Um
Mohammad, a teacher said with her voice breaking.
"Dozens of university students have to walk some 10
kilometers on foot every day to reach their
universities outside the city."
American troops have further imposed a media blackout,
denying reporters access to the ghost city.
"This is the first time I see a reporter in Haditha
since the US launched its offensive," an elderly
resident told Al-Quds Press's correspondent.
Human Rights Watch revealed in September that US
troops routinely subjected Iraqi detainees to severe
beatings and other cruel and inhumane treatment as a
"way of sport" or just to "relieve stress".
Far in Afghanistan, two US soldiers were reprimanded
on Sunday, November 28, for burning two dead Taliban
The two soldiers responsible for recording a message
boasting about the act of the burning and broadcasting
it on loudspeakers will face non-judicial punishment,
which may include a loss of pay or demotion in rank.