I put Middle Earth Journal in hiatus in May of 2008 and moved to Newshoggers.
I temporarily reopened Middle Earth Journal when Newshoggers shut it's doors but I was invited to Participate at The Moderate Voice so Middle Earth Journal is once again in hiatus.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Mesopotamia Today

The good news from the neocon's debacle in Iraq just keeps pouring in.
In response to the trackback anyone with half a brain would realize that the "good news" part is snark. That would include the regular progressive readers but of course not the wingnuts who have something less than half a brain.

Baghdad Bombings Kill 45 in Shiite Areas
BAGHDAD -- Six bombs exploded in predominantly Shiite sections of the capital Sunday, killing at least 45 people in a renewal of sectarian carnage that set back the U.S. push to pacify Baghdad.

North of Baghdad, two British helicopters crashed after an apparent mid-air collision, killing two service members, U.K. officials said.

The U.S. military announced three U.S. troop deaths _ two soldiers and a Marine killed in separate incidents.

And in the holy Shiite city of Karbala, health officials raised the toll from a bombing Saturday close to one of the sect's most sacred shrines, saying 47 people were killed and 224 wounded.
With attacks of Shiites continuing how much longer will Moqtada al-Sadr people continue to stay on the sidelines? Not much longer apparently.
Cleric Sadr's bloc to quit Iraq government
BAGHDAD (Reuters) - The political movement of fiery Iraqi Shi'ite cleric and militia leader Moqtada al-Sadr said on Sunday it would withdraw from the government on Monday to press its demand for a timetable for a U.S. troop withdrawal.

Officials from the movement, which holds six ministries and a quarter of the parliamentary seats in Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki's Shi'ite Alliance, said the formal announcement would be made on Monday at a news conference.

The move is unlikely to bring down the government, but it could create tensions in Maliki's fractious Shi'ite-led government of national unity at a time when it is trying to heal sectarian divisions that threaten to tip Iraq into civil war.

"We are going to declare our withdrawal from government because the prime minister does not want to make a timetable for the withdrawal of foreign forces from Iraq," said one official in Sadr's movement who declined to be identified.
This is a disturbing element but even more disturbing is there is some inconsistencies in what spokesmen for al-Sadr's movement said.
Two other Sadr officials confirmed the intention to pull out of the government but stressed the movement would continue to give "cautious" backing to a U.S.-Iraqi security crackdown in the capital. The Sadrists will remain in parliament.
And this:
A senior official in Sadr's movement, Abdul-Mehdi al-Muteyri, said Sadr had also ordered the pullout, saying Maliki was hamstrung by political parties in his government pulling him in different directions.

"We don't believe in partisan quotas. Under the direct orders of Moqtada al-Sadr we have decided we are going to leave the government in order to give the prime minister the best possible options so that he can run his government," Muteyri said.
A unified Sadr movement would be much easier to deal with than a divided one with a lot of freelance splinter groups.

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