Radical Iraqi cleric urges resistance against US

by
January 8, 2011

The Associated Press, FOXNews.com

NAJAF, Iraq – A powerful cleric whose fearsome militia once battled Americans urged followers Saturday to resist the United States “with all means” in his first public address in Iraq after four years in exile.

Addressing an adoring crowd of thousands, Muqtada al-Sadr also called on the newly formed government of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki to make sure all U.S. forces leave Iraq by the end of the year as planned. And he warned that “we have the political means” to reject that government if it does not provide security and services to its citizens.

The fiery Shiite cleric, who abruptly returned from Iran earlier this week, whipped the crowd into a frenzy when he called the U.S., Israel and Britain “our common enemies.”

But he reserved his harshest comments for the U.S., his primary foe, which invaded Iraq in 2003.
“Let the whole world hear that we reject America. No, no to the occupier,” al-Sadr said during his 35-minute speech. “We don’t kill Iraqis — our hands do not kill Iraqis. We target only the occupier with all the means of resistance.”

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