RAMADI, Iraq (Rotters News)
In another display of pinpoint military might, the United States continued to “shock and awe” the world in an attack on an Iraqi wedding party on Thursday.
(The shock was that the U.S. would target a wedding full of civilians, including women, children, and the elderly — and the ‘awe’ was that U.S. officials would continue to insist that they represent high moral standards while killing innocent children.)
Revelers at the wedding party said they began worrying when they heard aircraft overhead at about 9 p.m. With jets still overhead two hours later, they told the band to stop playing and everyone went to bed.
”We began to expect some kind of catastrophe,” said Madhi Nawaf, who lives in the area near Mogr el-Deeb on the Syrian border.
The first bomb hit well after midnight and the barrage didn’t stop until nearly sunrise, witnesses told The Associated Press. In the end, up to 45 people were killed in the attack Wednesday, mostly women and children from the Bou Fahad tribe.
”Mothers died with their children in their arms,” said Nawaf. One was his daughter. ”I found her a few steps from the house, her 2-year-old son Raad in her arms. Her 1-year-old son, Raed, was lying nearby, missing his head.”
U.S. Military officials said the target was just one of many in the ongoing “war against terrorism”. In Baghdad, Brig. Gen. Mark Kimmitt, coalition deputy chief of operations, repeated that claim Thursday, saying that the U.S. was acting on excellent intelligence.
“The intelligence we had was as good as any we’ve had during the entire Iraqi war,” Kimmitt said, “and we got specific information from reliable sources close to our old friend Ahmed Chalabi that this wedding party was definitely hiding weapons of mass destruction.”
At that point in the press conference, Kimmitt was interrupted by an aide who took him aside and whispered in his ear. When Kimmitt returned to the microphone, he continued, “um, strike that last sentence, if you would… um…um, anyway, we had good intelligence from reliable sources. And we expect to find small traces of sarin and mustard gas in the wedding cake, high explosives disguised as party favors, and we know that most of the children were packin’ heat.”
Kimmitt said soldiers also found jewelry and vehicles that indicated the people were not wandering Bedouin but ”town dwellers.”
In the war on terror in Iraq, “town dwellers” has apparently become a euphemism for “murderous terrorists” — and sources from the Pentagon told reporters that jewelry can be melted down and cast as artillery weapons capable of firing small vehicles at American cities along the Eastern Coast of the United States.
Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, when asked about the incident late Thursday, added, “You take enough jewelry and a few old Mercedes — and you can do a lot of damage to a city like Boston or New York. This was just another preemptive attack in the fight against terrorism. I mean — if you wait for evidence of a smoking gun, it might turn out to be in the form of a Mercedes with an exhaust problem landing on your head. Or a wedding cake hurled from point blank range. These people are terrorists, they’re barbaric! And we have other evidence as well — this alleged wedding couple had done their gift registry at Kalashnikovs-R-Us. Come on, good golly gee, don’t be naive, it’s not like they were interested in ‘Martha Stewart’ products from K-Mart. They’re animals.”
Late Thursday, more than a dozen men from the Bou Fahad tribe transported the dead to Ramadi, capital of Anbar province, which includes Mogr el-Deeb. Twenty-eight graves were dug in the tribe’s cemetery outside Ramadi, each containing one to three bodies. A wake was held Thursday at a home in Ramadi.
Sheik Dahan Haraj, the tribe’s chief who was also at the wedding, said that if the Americans suspected terrorists, ”why not seal off the area and make sure they were indeed foreign fighters?”
American officials were unavailable for a response.
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