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.
"The prisoners were against the wall and we were standing in the courtyard when the Interior Minister said that he would like to kill them all on the spot. Allawi said that they deserved worse than death - but then he pulled the pistol from his belt and started shooting them."
Re-enacting the killings, one witness stood three to four metres in front of a wall and swung his outstretched arm in an even arc, left to right, jerking his wrist to mimic the recoil as each bullet was fired. Then he raised a hand to his brow, saying: "He was very close. Each was shot in the head."
The Herald has established that as many as 30 people, including the victims, may have been in the courtyard. One of the witnesses said there were five or six civilian-clad American security men in a convoy of five or six late model four-wheel-drive vehicles that was shepherding Dr Allawi's entourage on the day. The US military and Dr Allawi's office refused to respond to questions about the composition of his security team. It is understood that the core of his protection unit is drawn from the US Special Forces units.
Nice catch, YY .
UPDATE: this story was just picked up by another Australian paper, The Age. How long will it be before the AP or other US-based media are on to it?
UPDATE II: The Sydney Morning Herald provides some context.
UPDATE III: ABC News Online (Australia) picks it up. Come on, US media. We're number 1, right? Run this story. USA! USA! USA!
UPDATE IV: And the winner is: The Washington Times (!). Thanks, Omar K. Ravenhurst.
Friday, July 16, 2004
Only the name has changed, according to the Sydney Morning Herald:
by Holden at 09:51