Reprisals By Assassination Against

Reprisals by Assassination against Baathists

az-Zaman: Iraqi sources connected to the ministry of the interior (=FBI in American terms, MI5 in British ones) say that 1,000 Iraqis were assassinated in the months following the fall of Saddam from among the cadres of scientists and artistic and cultural figures, the majority of them physicians, professors, engineers working for military production in the former regime. The Quds press agency reports that there is a new wave of assassinations in Baghdad and other cities, targetting former Baathists. In the past few days, a former Iraqi security official and his wife were assassinated in Hayy al-Bayya` as they were walking in the market with their child. Three members of Baath party factions were shot down by assailants. Another Baathist was killed in Karbala . . . etc. Gunmen also have shot down a teacher in an elementary school in a Baghdad neighborhood.

I’ve been seeing items like this in the Arabic press about once a month, and you wonder if in the past year there haven’t been several thousand such executions by assassination all over the country. The lack of progress toward a South Africa-style truth and reconciliation effort may be partially to blame here. Are any Baathists being tried for their crimes?