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September 13, 2007

Leader of the "Anbar Awakening" Killed
Posted by Ilan Goldenberg

The man most responsible for the political deal that was cut last year and actually lead to improvements in Anbar was killed this morning


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The handshake of death. President Bush shakes hands with Sheik Abdul-Sattar Abu Risha, an Iraqi tribal leader, during a meeting with tribal leaders at Al-Asad Airbase in Iraq. The sheik looks like he knew what was coming to an occupation collaborator. [photo]

news report:
The importance of the assassination of Abu Risha is that it once again underlines the difference between the bloody reality of Iraq as it is and the way it is presented by the US administration. He is one of a string of Iraqi leaders who have been killed in Iraq since the invasion of 2003 because they were seen as being too close to the US. These include the Shia religious leader Sayid Majid al-Khoei, murdered in Najaf in April 2003, and Mohammed Baqir al-Hakim, the head of the Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iraq, killed by a suicide bomber the same year.

President Bush's highly publicised visit to Anbar may well have been Abu Risha's death knell. There are many Sunni who loathe al-Qa'ida, but very few who approve of the US occupation. By giving the impression that Abu Risha was one of America's most important friends, Mr Bush ensured that some of the most dangerous men in the world would try to kill him.

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