Sunday, March 06, 2005

Al Iraqiya TV exposes terror cells again.

Last night, Al Iraqiya TV broadcasted another round of confessions and interrogations with some of the recently captured terrorists. I have heard a lot about this program and we even posted links to some information and quotes from it but this was the 1st time for me to watch it in person and it's really difficult to describe the feelings I had while watching those vampires voicing their confessions and looking weak and helpless while describing how they carried out their bloody operations that terrified the civilians for a long time.

Frankly speaking, Mohammed has been encouraging me to follow this program for a while now, he's a daily follower of this program and he's been telling me what he has seen in different previous episodes. I am not much into watching TV but what I have been hearing about this series and the people's reactions to it on the streets made me finally decide to give it some time. This time the terrorists were captured in the city of Hilla/Babylon.

The majority was Iraqis (all were men except for one woman) but there was also a number of Arabs in the group, mainly from Sudan!
The 1st criminal the interrogator started with was a 27 year old man
from the southern suburbs of Baghdad between Baghdad and Hilla.
He confessed of performing several attacks against the IP and the ING men killing a total of 15 IP men and 6 ING soldiers.
It's very upsetting to know that pathetic men like this criminal charged 250000 ID (less than 200$!) for each operation they perform regardless of the number of the "targets" being eliminated.
A second terrorist described in his confession how he took part in kidnapping 6 IP men and blowing up the police station in the town of Msayab using a number of IEDs and later executing the 6 policemen. All this for 250000 ID for each one of the 8 members of the gang!

Back to the 1st terrorist. When he was asked about his group he said that he was a member of the "Islamic Army" group. I will quote a short part of the conversation that took place between the officer and the criminal on TV.

Officer: were you doing these killings for Jihad?
Criminal: yes Sir.
Officer: for Jihad or for money?
Criminal: for both Sir.
Officer: how could Jihad be paid for!!
Criminal: (no answer)
Officer: you're Muslim?
Criminal: yes
Officer: on ID card, huh?
Criminal: yes
Officer: do you pray or go to the mosque?
Criminal: no
Officer: do you drink?
Criminal: yes Sir.
Officer: so you don't pray and you don't go to the mosque and you drink and you kill for money and after all this you call your evil doings Jihad?!!! And you call your group the "Islamic Army"!!
Criminal: (no answer again)
Officer: so, tell me about those 9 policemen. Where were they coming from and where were they heading?
Criminal: coming from 'Msayab and heading to Hilla
Officer: so they weren't coming from Tel Aviv? (from the officer's tone, obviously mocking the conspiracy theorists).
Criminal: no Sir, they were Iraqis.

This question which has been repeated over and over again in this program is now ringing in the ears and minds of the people. Why are these terrorists killing the people? Is it Jihad? NO because they're charging money for it.
Is it to "liberate Iraq from the occupiers"? Again the answer is NO because the victims were Iraqis in almost all of the attacks.
Is it to "defend Islam"? The answer is still NO because what has an alcoholic got to do with religion.

The worrisome part was when the terrorist stated that the 1st operation they performed was done in cooperation with an IP sergeant who provided the schedule about the movement of the IP men who were going home for a vacation. And the victims were unarmed by the way in all the cases but one.
This has to be noticed and dealt with by the officials in the ministry of interior because such statements indicate that some security systems are infiltrated by bad elements. Previous massacres brought this theory to the surface but now there are facts and evidence that clearly identify these dangerous defects.

I was happy like many other people that terror cells are being located and busted one after the other but there was also some deal of fear; there were breaks throughout the program in which some shots were taken from previous episodes. I recall one of the terrorists who was working as a taxi driver explaining why he shot a man in the head. His words were "he sounded like a "collaborator" so I decided that he should be killed". This could have happened to anyone and this is scary indeed.

It's also worth mentioning that most of the performers are people with simple careers while the heads of the cells are in most of the cases ex-officers in the republican guard and middle ranking former Ba'athists and there are always some joint officers from Syria and in this case the Syrian agent's code name was Abu Ivan (no further details were provided).

Regardless of what might be said about the inappropriateness of showing these interrogations and regardless of all the discussions about human rights and Geneva conventions...etc, I believe that it was necessary to bring these confessions and interrogations to the public because this is smething that touches the lives of the people in many places and in many ocassions, therefore the people deserve to know everything about it.

Here in Iraq, it DID make a difference as it helped more people who had uncertain thoughts about the "insurgency" get the right picture of the nature of the "insurgents" motivations, goals and ideology. And I think it will also have a positive effect on the performance of the security forces.
The progress may be happening slowly but the situation is promising; the people and the security forces are actively building a untied front to face terrorism and this is what we really need to secure our country.


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