It’s All a Part of the Marvelous Tapestry…

New York Times Article:Iraq’s New Leaders Ease Purge of Baathists

The Iraqi Baath party became dominated by Saddam’s fellow Sunni Muslims and oversaw oppression of the Shi’ite majority, including the bloody suppression of an uprising in 1991.

Shi’ite leaders warned of unrest if senior Baathists returned: “The people in central and southern Iraq will be furious. They will revolt,” said Abdul Karim al-Mohammadani, a southern tribal leader on the commission.

New York Times Article:President Bush Urges All Autocrats to Yield Now to Democracy

In his address, delivered at Galatasaray University, President Bush returned to a familiar theme the need to confront terrorism by forcefully encouraging Muslim nations to modernize.

He sought to link the invasion of Iraq to a strategy aimed at promoting democracy in what he called the “broader Middle East,” an area that aides said might stretch from North Africa to the Indian subcontinent.

New York Times Article:Iraq Mortar Attack Injures 11 US Troops

Al-Jazeera reported that the group responsible for beheading two other foreign hostages had announced it was freeing the three Turks.

The abduction of the Turks was claimed by Jordanian terror mastermind Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, whose followers killed American Nicholas Berg last month and South Korean Kim Sun-Il last week.

New York Times Article:Abducted Marine Reportedly Deserted

But several hostages have been executed. The latest victim appears to be Specialist Keith Matthew Maupin, an American soldier who vanished after an ambush on his convoy near Baghdad on April 9.

On Monday, Al Jazeera, which has been first to broadcast a number of videos showing the killing of Americans, broadcast a video it said ended with kidnappers shooting Specialist Maupin in the head. Army officials said they could not confirm that he had been killed.

Intelligence officials said it is not clear if the kidnappings are coordinated, although they suspect that some of the captors are at least loosely tied to Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, a Jordanian militant thought to be behind much of the mayhem in Iraq.

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