Muqtada: The US is the Great Satan
The radical young Shiite leader Muqtada al-Sadr accused the American administration in Iraq of pressuring Friday prayers preachers to cease criticizing the occupation. He described the US as “the Great Satan,” and referred to the Baath regime as having been the “little satan.” Speaking before thousands at his mosque in Kufa (near Najaf), al-Sadr said, “The recent decision issued by America to the leaders of Friday prayers specifies that it is forbidden to make any statement contrary to its policies, and branding any prayer leader who does make statements against the coalition authorities an ‘inciter of terrorism.'” He wondered, “When have wars and occupation ever been synonymous with peace, and when has intervening in a country ever been synonymous with peace?” He added, “In general, America wants to imprison all who speak their opinions. That is what the former regime used to do in Iraq. The little satan is gone, and the great satan has come.” (al-Hayat).