Monday, June 30, 2003

A rare link to FOXNews: American forces in Najaf have arrested the mayor there, Abu Haydar Abd al-Mun'im along with "62 of his top aides" for kidnapping and corruption. The U.S. had originally appointed Abd al-Mun'im to the mayorship despite popular opposition stemming from his Ba'athist past. Najaf was the city where U.S. forces recently cancelled a planned election because they didn't like who was going to win, and I'm guessing this is partly to make up for that in the battle over public opinion. I was intrigued by the fact the arrest reportedly came on the request of an Iraqi judge, and would definitely like to know more on that score. Meanwhile, this Middle East On-Line article painted a positive picture of the current situation in Najaf...slightly too positive, I suspect. Still, that city, one of the most important centers of Shi'ism and home Ali's burial place has been one of the brighter spots in the Anglo-American occupation of Iraq, and hopefully this arrest is a sign that trend will continue.


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