Remember the mentally retarded women who were used as unwitting suicide bombers? Well, guess who helped al Qaeda set them up?
The acting director of a Baghdad psychiatric hospital has been arrested on suspicion of supplying al-Qaeda in Iraq with the mentally impaired women that it used to blow up two crowded animal markets in the city on February 1, killing about 100 people.
Iraqi security forces and US soldiers arrested the man at al-Rashad hospital in east Baghdad on Sunday [February 10th, I think - D]. They then spent three hours searching his office and removing records. Sources told The Times that the two women bombers had been treated at the hospital in the past.
Forgive the immediate cliché that comes to mind - probably an association you have also: shades of Hitler. However, this is a little more complicated, except for the al-Qaeda connection that is:
“They [the security forces] arrested the acting director, accusing him of working with al-Qaeda and recruiting mentally ill women and using them in suicide bombing operations,” a hospital official said.
Ibrahim Muhammad Agel, director of the hospital was killed in the Mansour district of Baghdad on December 11 by gunmen on motorbikes. Colleagues suspect that he was shot for refusing to cooperate with al-Qaeda.
They obviously mean that the director named here is the late Dr. Agel. You have to admire his courage in refusing to hand over his patients to mass murder. He paid a high price for his refusal, but I do wonder why he wasn’t given a security guard. The pieces don’t fit...
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Even before Sunday’s arrest, US officials believed that al-Qaeda was scouring Iraq’s hospitals for mentally impaired patients whom it could dupe into acting as suicide bombers. They said that al-Qaeda had used the mentally impaired as unwitting bombers before. “We have fairly good reason to believe this is not the first time they have recruited mentally handicapped individuals,” said one senior officer, though he did not think there had been more than half a dozen cases.
The attraction of mentally impaired women to al-Qaeda was obvious, he said. Being women they could get close to targets with less chance of being stopped or searched; being mentally impaired, they were “less likely to make a rational judgment about what they are being asked to do”.
…One of the women was given a backpack full of explosives and ballbearings, the other a suicide vest laden with explosives. They were sent into the middle of al-Ghazl and New Baghdad markets, which were packed with people. Their explosives were then detonated by remote control.
How chilling even to contemplate! Some lower form of depravity has been unleashed upon the world in the vacuum that followed the fall of the Soviet Union. Just as we could not contemplate the hell of Beslan before it happened, we could not have imagined a man standing (or sitting) some safe distance away. Then, just as the woman reached the place most crowded with families were looking at pets, those malevolent beings pushed the button.
President Reagan had no problem calling evil by its name. Our current politicians never use real words; they talk about “hope” and “change” and “dreams”… Why? It's not stupidity. These people are some of the best and the brightest. Nonetheless they seem willfully blinded by ambition.
The next bit of news was reassuring: The Times obviously has some sense of human decency in not providing us with images of what they saw:
The Times was shown photographs of the two young women’s severed heads, which were recovered from the wreckage. One very obviously had Down’s syndrome. The other had the round face, high forehead and other features often associated with Down’s syndrome, but her symptoms were less pronounced.
Think of the families of these two women, and what they must be suffering. Al-Qaeda may not be able to win friends, but it sure can influence people…
The US military believes that al-Qaeda is adopting these extreme tactics because the prevalence of check-points and concrete barriers is making car bombings harder, and fewer foreign suicide bombers are reaching Iraq. …
Thus, al-Q takes another, even more inhumane tactic. It is hard to imagine how much further down they could descend, but I have an idea it could get worse. Victory triumphs any other consideration for these murderous zealots.
Foreign jihadists - invariably male - used to carry out 90 per cent of the suicide bombings in Iraq, but the US military believes that tighter controls have halved the influx to 50 or 60 a month. The officer conceded that protecting public places against individual suicide bombers was almost impossible. “You really can’t stop a determined bomber from blowing themselves up,” he said. “The key is continuing to take down the terrorist network that conducts these operations.”
But some of our presidential contenders want to draw down the forces in Iraq and leave its people to the tender mercies of al-Qaeda. That’s the part I don’t understand. What has happened to the purported leaders in our country who are willing to let people die? Whether or not you supported our original move into Iraq, now that we are there, we have a moral obligation to keep on keeping on.
To do any less is to coöperate deliberately with evil.
Hat tip: From Waka Waka Waka. He titled this story “A Faith-Based Initiative”