Once again, Muslim-on-Muslim violence provokes a backlash among Muslims. I am glad to see anything that diminishes Al-Qaeda’s power in Iraq — but until we begin to see the same kind of indignation among Muslims when Muslims kill non-Muslims, we will not be out of the woods. From Reuters, with thanks to the Constantinopolitan Irredentist:
BAGHDAD: Iraqi insurgents in the Sunni city of Ramadi have turned against their al-Qa’ida allies after a bomb attack killed 80 people, sparking tit-for-tat assassinations.
Residents yesterday said at least three prominent figures on both sides were among those killed after local insurgent groups formed an alliance against al-Qa’ida, blaming it for massacring police recruits in Ramadi on January 5.
“There was a meeting right after the bombings,” one Ramadi resident said, speaking anonymously for fear of reprisals.
“Tribal leaders and political figures gathered to form the Anbar Revolutionaries to fight al-Qa’ida in Anbar and force them to leave the province.
“Since then, there has been all-out war between them.”
The bloodshed is the latest example of a trend US military commanders and diplomats have been pointing to optimistically as a sign that some militants may be ready to pursue negotiable demands through the Sunni engagement in parliament following last month’s election.
Last week, three local Islamist groups around Ramadi – the 1920 Brigades, the Mujaheddin Army and the Islamic Movement for Iraq’s Mujaheddin – met to distance themselves from their fellow Islamists in al-Qa’ida.
Iraqi newspapers quoted a statement from six armed groups on Monday announcing they had united to form the “People’s Cell” to confront al-Qa’ida leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and preserve security in the Anbar province.
The statement condemned “armed operations which target innocents” and affirmed “a halt to co-operation with al-Qa’ida”….