Long Live the Fedayeen Saddam!!! Long Live President Al-Hussein!!!
Long Live Palestine,FROM THE RIVER TO THE SEA!!!
Death to the Zionist Entity!!!
Victory to Anti-US Armed Struggle of Iraq!!!
Death to US Imperialism and its lackeys!!!
Saddam Tape Rallies Rebels as US Death Toll Rises
An audio broadcast purportedly made by Saddam Hussein told Iraqis today to step up their resistance to the US-led occupation, saying the United States and its allies misjudged the difficulty of occupying Iraq.
The speaker, who sounded like the ousted Iraqi leader, told Iraqis that the ‚??road of jihad (holy war) and resistance‚?? is the only one to make the ‚??armies of the unjust occupation leave our country‚??.
He also criticised Iraqis who are co-operating with coalition forces, calling them ‚??stray dogs that walk alongside the caravan‚?? and who lack even the ‚??minimum political weight‚?? to ‚??walk in the streets of Baghdad or any other Iraqi city‚??.
‚??We tell them that Iraq has a special ‚??chemical mix‚?? that can only be deciphered by the believers among the sons of Iraq,‚?? he said.
The tape was broadcast on the Arabic language television station Al-Arabiya, which is widely seen in Iraq and throughout the Middle East. The voice appeared husky and the speaker seemed tired.
A news editor at Al-Arabiya said the recording was delivered to the station via telephone a few minutes before it was aired. A person called the station earlier today and played the 15-minute tape, the news editor said.
‚??We don‚??t even know if the call was from Baghdad or any other place,‚?? the editor said.
During the broadcast, the speaker sed Saddam‚??s old rhetorical styles, including indirect references to President George W Bush and Prime Minister Tony Blair as ‚??liars‚?? and calling the White House the ‚??Black House‚??.
He began by greeting the Iraqi people on the occasion of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan and said the ‚??evil ones will not be able to occupy and colonise Iraq‚??.
‚??They thought and made others think that they were going on a picnic to occupy Iraq and destroy their weapons of mass destruction,‚?? the voice said, denying that Iraq had any such arms.
‚??Iraq will rebel against their evil intentions to colonise it and to wield influence in it,‚?? he said. ‚??The evil ones now find themselves in a crisis and this is God‚??s will for them.‚??
He added that ‚??the aggressors have no choice but to leave our nation‚?? and called on ‚??mujahedeen,‚?? or holy warriors, to strike coalition forces ‚??even harder‚??.
‚??The path of resistance is the path of choice to God and the people,‚?? he said.
The speaker made an apparent reference to the US plan to speed the transfer of political power to Iraqis, which was announced on Saturday. The speaker said that attacking ‚??agents brought by foreign armies‚?? takes precedence over attacking coalition armies themselves ‚?? a clear call to target Iraqis who work for the US-led coalition or government ministries.
Referring to coalition forces, the voice said they would ‚??only reap disappointment with more and more American lives lost.‚??
‚??The land and fire of glorious Iraq that God has blessed with jihad because of valour in resistance ... will swallow hundreds of thousands of troops that ... will never achieve their plans.‚??
Meanwhile the US military was today investigating whether insurgent groundfire caused the crash of two US helicopters, killing 17 American soldiers, the worst single loss of US life since the start of the Iraq war.
Five soldiers were injured in the Saturday crash.
The two Black Hawks, which belonged to the 101st Airborne Division, went down in residential neighbourhoods of Mosul, Iraq‚??s third-largest city, but hospital and police authorities said there were no civilian casualties.
Witnesses said the two aircraft collided, and some said at least one was struck by hostile fire.
The spokesman for the 101st Airborne, Major Trey Cate, said the military was ‚??trying to figure out what happened.... We are going to do a thorough investigation because if this either involved ground fire or it was safety-related, then ... we‚??re going to make sure we take precautions so it won‚??t happen again.‚??
A statement by the US command said one helicopter was carrying a quick reaction force and the other ferried soldiers on a transport mission in northern Iraq. Cate said the quick response team was on its way to investigate a shooting incident in which a US soldier was injured.
The statement did not give the cause of the crash.
‚??The cause of the incidents are under investigation,‚?? the statement said.
An Iraqi policeman in Mosul, however, said at least one of the Black Hawks was hit by ground fire.
‚??They hit it with a missile,‚?? said policeman Saddam Abdel Sattar.
According to Cate, one helicopter had 12 soldiers on board seven were killed and five injured. The other had 10 aboard all were killed.
Before the crash, the US military‚??s deadliest incident was the downing of a Chinook transport helicopter on November 2 in which 16 soldiers died.
Elsewhere violence in the area continued. A roadside bomb exploded in Mosul, hitting an Iraqi minibus, slightly injuring four people, Iraqi police said. There were no US troops in the area of the blast.
On Saturday, the Iraqi Governing Council endorsed a US plan that would create a provisional government by June. The transfer of power would provide Washington with an ‚??exit strategy‚?? in the face of escalating guerrilla warfare.
The plan reflected Washington‚??s desire to speed up the handover of power as attacks against American occupation forces grow more sophisticated and deadly. The Bush administration dropped its insistence that a constitution be drawn up and elections held before the transfer takes places.
However, one of the 24 members of Iraq‚??s Governing Council warned that ‚??execution of the plan won‚??t be easy‚?? without improvement in the security situation and a revival of Iraq‚??s economy.
And US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld cautioned today that the accelerated plan for restoring Iraqi self-rule does not mean US troops will withdraw anytime soon.
‚??The timetable or the way ahead that the (Iraqi) Governing Council has been describing relates to the governance aspects of the country and not to the security aspects,‚?? he said. ‚??That‚??s on a separate track.‚??
The council, which has acted as Iraq‚??s interim administration since it was appointed in July, announced a set of deadlines that would give Iraq a provisional national assembly by May, a transitional administration with full sovereign powers in June and an elected government before the end of 2005.
With the return of sovereignty in June, the US military occupation will formally end, although American forces are expected to remain in Iraq under a new arrangement to be worked out with the Iraqis.
Until a constitution is drafted and adopted, a basic law will be promulgated by the Governing Council and take effect in February.
The law, according to an official statement, would establish a democratic and federal state that ‚??respects the Islamic identity of the majority of the Iraqi people with the guarantee of the right of other religions and sects.‚??
It will enshrine respect for human rights and ensure equality of members of the country‚??s diverse religious and ethnic groups.
The new timetable replaced a political blueprint by L. Paul Bremer, the top US official in Iraq, that envisaged a new constitution and a democratic govern
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