Two reports came up almost simultaneously that seem unrelated, but should be the next expectation in the terrorists' escalation of heinous war crimes.
Via Mudville Gazette, Iraq Slogger points out whatappears to be a positive story about Sunni Tribesmen fighting off would be kidnappers of a village child.
Armed tribesmen in the Eastern Husayba village (5 km east of Ramadi) in the Anbar Governorate managed to drive out a local insurgent group associated with the Al-Qaeda in Iraq organization from their village, while residents discovered a mass grave of 16 citizens killed by militants in the area, Sot Al-Iraq reported. The campaign started Friday after gunmen abducted a local boy named Yassir, prompting his mother to go out on the street screaming and urging the villagers to carry arms and find her only son. Dozens of men from the area armed with pistols, rifles and machine guns grouped and started searching the palm orchards surrounding their village while shouting tribal battle cries. They located and captured the insurgent cell of 11 men before sunset and released the kidnapped boy. The tribesmen reportedly handed over their prisoners to the Ramadi Police Directorate
The report was dated 03/18/07.
AFP reports that two children were used as cover in a Homicide car bombing.
WASHINGTON (AFP) - Insurgents in Iraq detonated an explosives-rigged vehicle with two children in the back seat after US soldiers let it through a Baghdad checkpoint over the weekend, a senior US military official said Tuesday.
The vehicle was stopped at the checkpoint but was allowed through when soldiers saw the children in the back, said Major General Michael Barbero of the Pentagon's Joint Staff.
"Children in the back seat lowered suspicion. We let it move through. They parked the vehicle, and the adults ran out and detonated it with the children in the back," Barbero said.
We shouldn't be surprised. These are the same people that orchestrated the major homicide car bombing that killed over 37 children and wounded another 107 in 2004.
Barbero said the insurgents were "changing tactics", but the truth is, its a re-hashed makeover of the usual. For all the wailing and nashing of teeth regarding possible deaths of civilians caused by American forces (complaints of that have gone down considerably and in comparison to the terrorist actions), the terrorists continue to show a blatant disregard for innocent life, particularly the most innocent of all.
In another recent article highlighting wounded American soldiers, a terrorist sniper targeted and killed a young boy of 10 in order to take out the captain speaking to him:
For Capt. Edward Arntson, the worst wounds might be deeper than flesh. They’ve left some painful memories.
One began around noon on New Year’s Eve, while Arntson was leading a patrol east of Fallujah as commander of Able Company (3rd Batallion, 509th Parachute Infantry Regiment). He’d just stopped to talk to a young boy and his family about what they’d seen in the area.
"His house was right near one of my platoon’s observation posts," recalled Arntson, 26, who’d previously fought in Afghanistan with other soldiers from Fort Richardson.
"And right at the tail end of the conversation with the boy and his mother, as I turned to leave, he was shot through the chest — and the bullet passed through the boy and hit me in the arm."
Or the young boy who was shot in the face while his father went to provide refreshments for visiting "masked men" in the dead of night or the 4 year old boy who was tied to his father's leg and thrown into the river with his father's bullet ridden body to drown.
You may ask yourself, "Do they have no compassion?" Where is the concern for "innocents" in this strategy? Where is their humanity? The answer is: there is none.
The wailing of men and women over the broken remains of their children are but a line of dissonant harmony in their evil requiem. It is very likely that these children were kidnapped and, with the state of things in Iraq, they will have simply disappeared, never ransomed like the hundreds or thousands of children kidnapped and held to generate funds for the continuing insurgency; their fate unknown to their parents.
Yet, like the Chlorine Bomb and even our own 9/11 where passengers now know that a hijacked plane is very likely a certain death, such tactics may stir fear, but often instill resolution, determination and outright anger. They are losing strategies because people know the odds and they will play them. The odds for kidnapped children to be horribly killed rather than ransomed have gone up considerably. That is after the very likely existing death for all those whose families could not pay the ransom in the first place. Knowing such odds will likely increase the opposition to the insurgents, not win them "hearts and minds".
Those are but a few stories of the depravity of terrorists who blatantly tell us that they "love death more than you love life".
The last questions we should ask, considering the Beslan attacks and the deaths of children on the planes on 9/11, do you believe when we leave Iraq that such things will simply disappear? Do you think that such blatant disregard for human life, particularly the most innocent and vulnerable among us will not follow us here?
Personal Experience in Dealing with Packs of Wild Animals
Here in fly over country, my family once owned a farm where my grandfather raised herefords and my cousins ran sheep. It's a fact that coyotes, like any creature of nature, will kill the young or the weak from a herd of sheep. Generally, this is to feed the pack. If the pack of coyotes is successful in culling out the young and the weak for consumption, they will return again and again until they are run off or killed. When this happens, farmers will band together, sometimes posting a night shephard on the herd, setting traps or driving the herd into enlcosed pens or outbuildings in their attempts to keep the pack from destroying too much livestock.
However, when a pack of coyotes or wild dogs go on a killing spree and indiscriminately kill a number of the herd simply for the pleasure of killing, every farmer knows the danger to his own flock has tripled and financial ruin is around the corner. In these cases, the farmers and local ranchers will mount concentrated night patrols and hunting parties to hunt down and kill every last wild dog or coyote. It is commonly accepted that, once a wild dog or coyote has started killing indiscriminately, none can be spared because they will form a new pack and continue to kill.
In the movie, Silence of the Lambs, Hannible taunts Clarice with her memory of the lambs terrorized sounds as the coyotes attacked them. In real life, at the age of ten, I was on my grandfather's farm during "lambing season". It was a particularly warm spring and the pregnant ewes were allowed to "lamb" in the field. During colder springs or difficult times, they would be herded into the "lambing barn" to be protected from the elements or creatures.
This night, we were woken up by the sounds of the sheep baaing fearfully as they ran in herds towards the safety of the barn. Within in minutes, we were up and dressed trying to herd the ewes who were about to "drop" into the lambing barn while my grandfather, father, uncles and cousins from a nearby farm packed into 4x4 Blazers with rifles and shot guns. I still remember the coyotes calling to each other across the rolling hills and the terrified sheep baaing as the headlights flashed over the fields. Powerful spotlights picked out the coyotes as the men yelled to each other, calling out the position of the coyotes. Shots rang out as the coyotes were picked off and finally silenced.
We lost one ewe and three lambs that night before the coyotes were killed. If the coyotes hadn't been stopped, they would have simply torn through our flock without regard and with no natural compunction for consumption then moved on to the next flock and the next.
That should be our lesson with these packs of wild animals. Any who can deliberately target children for no other reason than to circumvent natural human reaction and cause the most destruction and death possible, will not reform, cannot be negotiated with and cannot be allowed to roam the countryside looking for the next and the next.
This simple understanding may actually be the reason why so many young men from rural areas volunteer, for all the media's continued representation of "young, rural rubes" joining the military for financial reasons or for "escape". They understand the nature of rabid animals and the only way to defend against them is to kill everyone of them or watch your flock die en masse.