Mosque bomber a specialist
- Iraq shrine bombing was specialist job: minister
By Agence France Presse
02/25/06 "AFP" -- -- The bombing of a revered Shiite shrine which
sparked a wave of violence in Iraq was the work of specialists,
Construction Minister Jassem Mohammed Jaafar said Friday, adding that
the placing of the explosives must have taken at least 12 hours.
"According to initial reports, the bombing was technically well
conceived and could only have been carried out by specialists," the
minister told Iraqia state television.
Jaafar, who toured the devastated thousand-year-old shrine on Thursday
a day after the bombing which brought down its golden dome, said
"holes were dug into the mausoleum's four main pillars and packed with
"Then the charges were connected together and linked to another charge
placed just under the dome. The wires were then linked to a detonator
which was triggered at a distance," the minister added.
To drill into the pillars would have taken at least four hours per
pillar, he also estimated.
Damage to the mausoleum, holding the tombs of the 10th and 11th Shiite
Imams, was extensive.
"The dome was completely wrecked and collapsed on the tombs which were
covered over by debris. The shrine's foundations were also affected as
40 percent of the power of the blast was directed inwards," he added.
"It's a historic site, a symbol of Iraqi culture and must be treated
as such," he said, adding that he would call on Iraqi officials and on
UNESCO to help rebuilt the golden mosque.
Jaafar said he survived a double bomb attack while returning from
Samarra when blasts went off in front of his convoy and behind it.
Copyright © 2006 Agence France Presse
Pentagon-Controlled Iraqi National Guard Implicated
in Samarra Mosque Bombing
Thursday February 23rd 2006
As the "non-partisan" Council on Foreign Relations assures us, Iraqi
National Guard troops are trained and fully "vetted" by the Pentagon.
"National guard troops receive three weeks of formal training and then
on-the-job training by working with U.S. forces," a CFR backgrounder
explains [ http://www.cfr.org/publication.html?id=7633#2 ]. "The
National Guard has replaced the Iraqi Civil Defense Corps as the
largest security force in Iraq," reports the World Tribune. "The
45,000-member force has been trained and equipped by the United
States, with help from Britain and Jordan." In short, the Iraqi
National Guard is a subsidiary of the Pentagon, organized and trained
to do the bidding of the Anglo-American occupation forces and their
installed minions. Thus it should come as no surprise the Iraqi
National Guard may play an important role in the recent bombing of the
Golden Dome mosque in Samarra, according to locals.
Since it is unreasonable to expect Baghdad hotel-bound corporate media
hacks to report anything beyond what is read from a Pentagon script
inside the Green Zone, most Americans remain unaware of details
implicating the Iraqi National Guard in the bombing. According to
reports appearing on the humanitarian Iraqi League organization's
Iraqi Rabita website and translated into English by the Iraqi blogger
Baghdad Dweller [ http://www.roadstoiraq.com/?p=723 ] (see original
Arabic here [ http://www.iraqirabita.org/index.php?do=article&id=3061
] and here [ http://www.iraqirabita.org/index.php?do=article&id=3065
]), at least two witnesses saw "unusual activities by the ING [Iraqi
National Guard] in the area around the mosque." Two mosque guards
reported four men in ING uniforms had blindfolded them and planted
explosives. A second witness, Muhammad al-Samarrai, the owner of an
internet cafe in the area, was told to stay in his store and not leave
the area. From 11 pm until 6:30 am, ten minutes before two bombs were
detonated, the area surrounding the mosque was patrolled by "joint
forces of Iraqi ING and Americans," according to al-Samarrai.
In addition to apparently facilitating the mosque bombing, Iraqi
National Guard troops provided assistance to "more than a dozen masked
Shia gunmen" attacking the Sunni al-Quds mosque in western Baghdad in
the wake of the Samarra attack, according to the Times Online [
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,3-2053587,00.html ]. In
addition, "gunmen arrived [at the Maakel prison in Basra] in a fleet
of cars and showed documents which claimed that they were from the
Interior Ministry? and lynched at least eleven Sunni inmates, among
them at least two Egyptians."
Last month, according to the Washington Post [
html], the Iraqi Interior Ministry was implicated in the operation of
death squads targeting Sunnis. Moreover, according to John Pike, an
expert on classified military budgets, as cited by Robert Dreyfuss in
an article for the American Prospect
[http://www.prospect.org/print/V15/1/dreyfuss-r.html ], a 2004 Iraqi
appropriation bill contained $3 billion for paramilitary units. The
"bulk of the covert money" went to "support U.S. efforts to create a
lethal, and revenge-minded, Iraqi security force" and also "an Iraqi
secret police staffed mainly by gunmen associated with members of the
puppet Iraqi Governing Council," thus revealing the situation in Iraq
is not precisely as the hand-fed corporate media would have us believe.
Of course, two eye witnesses should not be considered conclusive
evidence the Pentagon puppet Iraqi National Guard is behind the mosque
bombings in Samarra. However, when added to the wealth of evidence
from various sources detailing the existence of a Anglo-American
"counterinsurgency" program in Iraq (including the now largely
forgotten and never referenced by the corporate media story of two
British covert operatives caught red-handed in terrorist behavior last
Id=972]) the incident should at least stir a modicum of suspicion.
Naturally, any such suspicion will go duly unnoticed by the corporate
media, already in the process of blaming the "al-Qaeda movement," as
James Jeffrey of the State Department characterized the perpetrators [
,00.html], and in the process leading the media down the preferred
path,discouraging for now the absurd idea, as suggested by at least
one member of the slavish corporate press, that Iran was somehow
behind the bombing of the mosque containing the entombed bodies of two
revered spiritual leaders of Shia Islam. "I think we should focus on
al-Qaeda at this point," Jeffrey declared. "There are plenty of
reasons to focus on Iran on other issues," for instance Iran's
illusory nuclear weapon program, dispelled some time ago by the
International Atomic Energy Agency [
Iran blames Iraq's shrine attack on U.S., Israel
Ahmadinejad blamed the U.S. and Israel for Wednesday's attack on
Iraq's Shia shrine
Iran accused the United States and Israel of orchestrating Wednesday's
attack on one of Iraq's holiest Shia shrines, The Associated Press
Referring to the U.S.-led occupation forces in Iraq, President Mahmoud
Ahmadinejad told a crowd in southwestern Iran: "They invade the shrine
and bomb there because they oppose God and justice,"
"These passive activities are the acts of a group of defeated Zionists
and occupiers who intended to hit our emotions," he said.
Addressing the United States, he added: "You have to know that such an
act will not save you from the anger of Muslim nations."
Wednesday's explosion destroyed the golden dome of the al-Askariya
shrine in the Iraqi city of Samarra, sparking mass protests across the
war-torn country, and triggering a series of attacks on Sunni mosques,
in which 19 people were killed.
Muslim leaders across the world condemned the attack and urged
restraint among all religious factions in Iraq.
Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who has the final say on
all state matters in the Islamic Republic, urged Shias not to take
revenge on Sunni Muslims for the attack, Reuters reported.
"This is a political crime and its origins should be found in the
intelligence organizations of the occupiers of Iraq and the Zionists,"
he said in a televised statement.
"The dominating powers ... have ominous plans such as aggravating the
insecurity and creating religious disputes ... Today's crime in
Samarra added another page to the list of misdeeds by Iraq's
occupiers," he added.
Announcing a week-long period of mourning, Khamenei demanded all
Muslims to avoid fanning the flames of sectarian rivalry. "There are
definitely some plots to force Shias to attack the mosques and other
properties respected by the Sunnis," he said. "Any measure to
contribute to that direction is helping the enemies of Islam and is
forbidden by Sharia."
Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi also blamed U.S.
occupation forces in Iraq for the attack. "This inhumane act,
committed by terrorists when Iraq is insecure, is due to the presence
of the (foreign) occupiers there," he said, adding that the attack "
aims to insult religious sanctities, trigger turmoil, launch religious
war, and create rifts among the Iraqi people".
Some prominent Muslim clerics and the Lebanese Hezbollah resistance
movement also blamed the United States.
"We cannot imagine that the Iraqi Sunnis did this," said the
influential Sunni cleric Sheik Youssef al-Qaradawi, an Egyptian who
lives in Qatar. "No one benefits from such acts other than the U.S.
occupation and the lurking Zionist enemy."
Iraq's Shia cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, who cut short a visit to Lebanon
after the bombing, said blame must be laid either with the Americans
or the Iraqi government, AP reported.
"If responsibility is not in the hands of the Iraqi government, then I
consider the responsibility for this event lies with the occupation
forces which should either leave immediately or according to a
timetable," al-Sadr said in Syria on his way back to Iraq.
Other Muslim leaders also denounced the attack.
Jordan's King Abdullah II called it "heinous". Lebanese Prime Minister
Fuad Saniora said it was aimed at "splitting Shia and Sunni Muslims."
And Kuwait's new emir, Sheik Sabah Al Ahmed Al Sabah, said those who
target holy sites and kill innocent people "are as far as can be from
the teachings of Islam."
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