Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Thwarting the Plot Against Sistani Thwarting the Plot Against Sistani

TCS Daily: Thwarting the Plot Against Sistani. Last weekend, a group calling itself the "Soldiers of Heaven" attempted to either kidnap or kill Grand Ayatollah Sistani and:
News reports describe the Soldiers of Heaven as a "messianic Shia cult" intent on murdering Shia pilgrims visiting shrines in the Iraqi city of Najaf. The Shia pilgrims were commemorating Ashoura, the murder of the Prophet Muhammad's grandson, Imam Hussein, after the Battle of Karbala in A.D. 680. That murder fixed the schism between the Sunni and the Shia. Najaf (which isn't far from the modern city of Karbala) is also Sistani's home.
Luckily for Sistani, the Iraqi Shia, and the U.S., the Iraqi government caught wind of the pending terrorist attack and attacked first. When the Iraqi army brigade ran into heavy resistance, they pulled back and called in American air strikes. In the end, some 263 terrorists were killed and another 300 captured. And with all those captives, it shouldn't be long before it can be determined who was beind the planned attack: Sadr's Mahdi army; the Iranians; or Sunnis. At present it looks to be Sadr and his militia, but if Iranian involvement can be proven, the results could be devastating to Tehran and the clerics running Iran right now. After all, this was a very important pilgramage to a very holy Shiite site. Plus, Sistani is rapidly gaining adherants in Iran. That rate would only increase if Tehran can be shown complicit.

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