Fadlallah Discourages formation of Militias
Grand Ayatollah Muhammad Hussein Fadlallah, who resides in Beirut, Lebanon, has long had a following inside Iraq. He was born and educated in Najaf and is an Iraqi. The Shiite al-Da`wa Party is said to favor him. According to al-Sharq al-Awsat, he was asked recently by Iraqi Shiites if the parties in Iraq should attempt to form paramilitary militias. Fadlallah replied that such a step should be avoided, because it might lead to sectarian violence and instability. He said instead that existing paramilitaries should be absorbed into the national Iraqi army. Fadlallah lived throught he Lebanese civil war and so has a low opinion of party militias. He at one time was linked to the Lebanese Hizbullah but is said to have cut ties to them years ago.