What if Hitler approved all journalists and news stories in WWII? Could we have won the war? Remember: a 'free press' is only free to criticize the United States and other free nations. Mainstream reporters will sell their souls to "get the story" (relay approved propaganda). I'm positive the 'persuasive' techniques used in Najaf were MORE than enough to cow the already reflexively anti-American media. Abu Ghraib continues to get non-stop coverage in the mainstream media, while the torture and murder victims of Najaf have already been forgotten.
The canard that fighting back creates terrorism is mostly untrue. All wars are wars of attrition. So long as we have more bullets than they have terrorists, fighting back is the best option. Did Bill Clinton's law enforcement approach shut down the terrorist training camps in Afghanistan? Did not going after Osama bin Laden stop 9/11? Of course, no to both.
But the media coverage biased in favor of terror-supporting Islamists cannot be underestimated. That creates terrorists.
Najaf's police chief, Maj. Gen. Ghalib al-Jazaari, said Wednesday only two of the dead were identified before burial and they were policemen, one of whom had his eyes gouged out. The other bodies included a woman and a child, and many showed signs of torture, he said. On Friday, about 1,000 protesters marched through Najaf's old quarter Friday to demand that the Iraqi government investigate the court and punish those in charge of it. They also demanded that al-Sadr leave Najaf.
Chanting, "Muqtada, the trash, is a leader of looters," the demonstrators walked past buildings hit by three weeks of fighting and insisted that al-Sadr's office be shut down. Iraqi soldiers kept the protesters from marching to al-Sadr's office.
Sheik Ali Smeisim, an aide to al-Sadr, said the demonstration was an attempt to create tension. "We were expecting such things," he said. "Whenever there is a chance for peaceful solutions, some people hold protests to escalate the situation."
In its heyday, the court issued accreditation to foreign journalists. Women swathed in black squatted in a narrow alley outside the two-story, dust-covered tan building to ask about detained relatives.