Iraq: March 31, 2004


Four Americans, security managers in charge of protecting food convoys moving through the hostile Sunni Arab region west of Baghdad, were ambushed in Fallujah. The four men were shot, burned in their two SUVs, then their bodies were mutilated, dragged through the streets and hung from a bridge. Sunni Arabs, who have ruled Iraq for centuries using such brutal methods, are terrified at the prospect of what will happen to them when an Iraqi government is formed by a democratic vote. Wander into any market or coffee shop in Sunni areas and you'll hear talk of "war crime" trials and revenge attacks from Kurds and Shia Arabs (and Christian Arabs, and Turkomen and even Iraqi Jews). The Sunni Arabs have a lot to be scared about, and the attack on the four Americans in Fallujah shows why. The video of the four Americans murdered in Fallujah will be shown throughout Iraq. Sunnis will see it as a victory over the invaders. Most other Iraqis will see it an another example of Sunni Arab cruelty and barbarism. Or, as many Sunni Arabs see it, the killing was a demonstration of their political skills. Scare people enough and they will obey. 


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