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Friday, July 16, 2004

Too Soon for Regime Change? 

And the two items below aren't even in contention for biggest-story-of-the-day honors. The prohibitive favorite -- keeping in mind that the day is only halfway done -- would have to be the instructive tale of partially-rehabilitated CIA terrorist Iwad Allawi, who is so far demonstrating, in his capacity as the newly-installed PM of Free Iraq, an admirable respect for tradition:
Iyad Allawi, the new Prime Minister of Iraq, pulled a pistol and executed as many as six suspected insurgents at a Baghdad police station, just days before Washington handed control of the country to his interim government, according to two people who allege they witnessed the killings.

They say the prisoners - handcuffed and blindfolded - were lined up against a wall in a courtyard adjacent to the maximum-security cell block in which they were held at the Al-Amariyah security centre, in the city's south-western suburbs.

They say Dr Allawi told onlookers the victims had each killed as many as 50 Iraqis and they "deserved worse than death".

The Prime Minister's office has denied the entirety of the witness accounts in a written statement to the Herald, saying Dr Allawi had never visited the centre and he did not carry a gun.

But the informants told the Herald that Dr Allawi shot each young man in the head as about a dozen Iraqi policemen and four Americans from the Prime Minister's personal security team watched in stunned silence.
Link courtesy of Zemblan patriot T.C. and the Many Busy Elves at Eschaton, who are on this story like a mustard plaster.

UPDATE: From an interview with the Australian journalist who broke the story:
PAUL McGEOUGH, 'SYDNEY MORNING HERALD': Well it's a very contentious issue.

What you have is two very solid eyewitness accounts of what happened at a police security complex in a south-west Baghdad suburb.

They are very detailed.

They were done separately.

Each witness is not aware that the other spoke.

They were contacted through personal channels rather than through the many political, religious or military organisations working in Baghdad that might be trying to spin a tale.

And they've laid it out very carefully and very clearly as to what they saw.

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