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U.S. Forces Kill Iraqi Bystanders in Firefight

An ugly situation that turned deadly, followed by the usual complete disconnect between the Iraqi official hospital figures of dead and wounded and their identities, compared to inflated body count claims of “bad guys only killed” by the U.S. military.

For Sadr City residents in the areas where the fighting was under way, at least some of whom appeared to have nothing to do with Mr. Sadr’s militia, the gunfire was terrifying. Two cousins, Murtada Saiedi, 8, and Ali Saiedi, 11, were walking home at 6:15 a.m. after buying fresh samoun for their families. Samoun is a triangular bread beloved by Iraqis for breakfast.

“I was holding the samoun in my arms in a big bag,� said Ali Saiedi, adding that he was taking the bread home for his eight siblings and his parents. “Then I heard a big sound and I tried to run, I wanted to reach my home, but I couldn’t.

“And then when I woke up, I was here,� he said, as he lay in a bed at the Imam Ali Hospital with bandages on his arms from shrapnel cuts.

His cousin, Murtada Saiedi, in the next bed, would not speak. He winced as he shifted his weight in the bed and looked up silently at his father and uncle, who were leaning over the child. The doctor had just come by to say that he thought Murtada might have some internal bleeding.

An official at the hospital, Abu Ibrahim, said an elderly woman whose midsection had been nearly severed by shrapnel died Sunday evening, bringing the total dead at the hospital to 16. There were 38 wounded who were admitted to the hospital, he said. Officials at a second hospital in the neighborhood reported one dead and two wounded.

The military said it did not believe there were any civilian deaths as a result of the fighting. “Ground forces reported they were unaware of any innocent civilians being killed as a result of this operation,� the military statement said.

So you see, that 8 year old and 11 year old are just liars, like that rich little brat Graeme Frost, who did a radio spot criticizing Bush’s veto of SCHIP (just because it saved his life he thinks he has something to say about the program). Note also that this massacre didn’t prevent military (aka political) spokesmen from throwing in a random swipe at the Iranians. Why would Iranians be behind a “kidnapping ring?” in Sadr City, a Shi’ite neighborhood?

Last but not least, look at the headline. Who’s “confused” about what happened other than the reporters? The U.S. military seems totally uninterested in finding out who they may have killed, and the hospital officials seem pretty certain about what happened, and have the dead and wounded women and children to prove it. Now perhaps that woman was chopped in two by an Iraqi militia grenade and not American weaponry; but everyone in Iraq knows that if the Americans had gone home by now, she would still be alive.

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