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  • A Nice Story

    MARINE COMBAT HEADQUARTERS, Iraq - The Iraqi man who tipped U.S. Marines to the location of American POW Jessica Lynch said Thursday he did so after he saw her Iraqi captor slap her twice as she lay wounded in a hospital.

    "A person, no matter his nationality, is a human being," the tipster, a 32-year-old lawyer whose wife was a nurse at the hospital, said in an interview at Marines' headquarters, where he, his wife and daughter are being treated as heroes and guests of honor.

    "He is an extremely courageous man who should serve as an inspiration to all of us to do the right thing," said Lt. Col. Rick Long, spokesman for the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force.

    After he saw Lynch slapped, the lawyer slipped into her room at the Saddam Hospital in Nasiriyah and told her, "Don't worry." Then he walked six miles to the nearest U.S. Marines and told them where she was.

    He later returned to the hospital, at the request of U.S. commanders, to map the facility and count how many Saddam Hussein loyalists were there.

    A U.S. commando force whose name remains secret rescued Lynch early Wednesday local time. She was taken Thursday to Germany for treatment of injuries she suffered when she was captured.

    The lawyer, whose first name is Mohammed and who asked that his last name not be published, smiled between every sentence as he recounted in broken but expressive English how he helped the Americans. He learned English at Basra University.

    Wearing Marine hand-me-downs after fleeing with only the clothes on their backs, Mohammed, his wife Iman, 32, a nurse at Saddam Hospital, and 6-year-old daughter Abir, seemed surprisingly cheerful for a family on the run.

    Grateful Leathernecks showered them with Marine unit patches, a commemorative coin and an American flag on their way to a refugee center near the port of Umm Qsar, where they hope to ride out the war.

    "I love America. I like America. Why, I don't know," Mohammed said as he recounted the critical role he played in Lynch's rescue.

    Iraqi President Saddam Hussein has long repressed Iraq's people with such a brutal grip that even with American troops at the gates to Baghdad many refuse to rise up against him out of fear that he will outlast the Americans.

    But Mohammed's tale is one of a man who didn't like what he saw when he walked into the Saddam Hospital last Friday to visit his wife and was told by a doctor friend that an American woman POW was in the emergency ward.

    The friend walked him to the ground-floor ward, taken over by the feared Saddam Fedayeen at the start of the war, and past a window where he saw Lynch, an Army private first class captured after her convoy became lost near Nasiriyah in the opening days of the war.

    Her head was bandaged, her right arm was in a sling over a white blanket and she had what Mohammed thought was a gunshot wound to a leg. But her real problem then was the black-uniformed Fedayeen commander who everyone addressed as "colonel."

    The man slapped her, Mohammed said. "One, two," he added, making single slapping and back slap motions with his right hand. She was very brave, he recalled.

    "My heart cut," Mohammed added, meaning stopped, putting his hand over his chest and grimacing. "There, I have decided to go to Americans to give them important information about the woman prisoner."

    He walked into her room with his doctor friend. "I said 'Good morning.' She thought I was a doctor. I say, 'Don't worry.' She smiled," he recalled.

    Doctors treating Lynch wanted to amputate her leg, Mohammed said, but his doctor friend persuaded them not to. His friend, he said, "hates Saddam Hussein and hates security of Saddam Hussein."

    Mohammed said he told his wife to take their daughter to his father's house for safety, and then set off on foot to find the American troops he had heard were occupying the edges of Nasiriyah.

    "This was very dangerous for me because American soldiers shoot," he said, throwing up his hands in the air to show how he carefully approached what turned out to be the U.S. Marines.

    He told them about the woman prisoner, and about a U.S. military uniform he had also seen, presumably of a U.S. soldier killed in the fighting in and around Nasiriyah, some of the heaviest of the war.

    They asked him to return to the six-story, 234-bed hospital to gather information on its layout, its hallways, stairways and doors, its basement and whether a helicopter could land on its roof.

    He walked back, with no taxis in sight, even as U.S. jets bombed parts of the city of more than 500,000 people. "Boom, boom. I walked under bombs. Fire, Fire," Mohammed recalled.

    He did the same thing the next day to report back to the Marines.

    There were 41 Fedayeen based at the hospital, with four guarding Lynch's room in civilian clothes but armed with AK-47 assault rifles and carrying radios.

    "I drew them a map. I drew them five maps," he said, plainly relishing his cloak-and-dagger missions into the heart of Saddam's terror network.

    Fedayeen raided his house the next day, he said, taking away all his possessions and even his car, a Russian-made Muscovitch Brazilia 680. He said a neighbor was shot and her body dragged through the streets just for waving at a U.S. helicopter.

    "Very bad people," he said. "There is no kindness in my heart for them
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  • #2
    Good for him. It takes a lotta courage to do such a thing and he should be rewarded. By the new government of course.

    It will be interesting to see how Saddam's end will come. Will he stand trial or die fighting?

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    • #3
      This is indeed a nice story, one which stands out from the rest of this dirty war.

      Sad only to see that, the very same day, US GI's forced Iraqi POWs to undress and stand in the desert naked. This is just a despise against human beings. This killed all the sympathies that existed after freeing the 19 year old PFC.

      Regards,
      Peter

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      • #4
        Well, we are worried about suicide attacks by surrendering forces. We have specific threats, and in order to ensure our troops safety, we make the Iraqi troops undress to make sure they have no bombs. This is nothing compared to what they did to our POWs, executing 11 of them and torturing them. At least we follow the rules.
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        • #5
          Originally posted by herpa2003
          ...At least we follow the rules.
          By making them undress in the middle of the desert!

          Joe,
          | My Photos | My Profile |

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          • #6
            RE

            Some may think that; that act is childish, although it could be for safety precautions, like a post said before, some have bombs fitted to them, so... it could go either way.

            But, as rules go, I think we (American... British...) have done well, the Iraqi forces on the other hand, well I shouldn't start, if you know what I mean.
            Cory Klimko
            Click Here to view my aircraft photos at JetPhotos.Net!

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            • #7
              DeltaCappy arn't you NWA_Flyer757?

              Joe,
              | My Photos | My Profile |

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              • #8
                RE

                I changed it, my email for NWA changed, and I couldn't activate it again, so I changed it.
                Cory Klimko
                Click Here to view my aircraft photos at JetPhotos.Net!

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                • #9
                  Thought it was you

                  Joe,
                  | My Photos | My Profile |

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by JoeJoe440
                    Originally posted by herpa2003
                    ...At least we follow the rules.
                    By making them undress in the middle of the desert!

                    Joe,
                    Well it is for our own protection. If we didn't do this, there could be more suicide attacks.
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                    • #11
                      your searching them for bombs right?

                      Well if there going to blow themselves up i think they will do it while they are fighting or being captured, not while being made to stand naked in the desert.

                      Joe,
                      | My Photos | My Profile |

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                      • #12
                        Scenario 1: An Iraqi soldier surrenders. You come up to frisk him to make sure he is not a suicide bomber. While you are frisking him he blows himself up. You are killed along with your friends.

                        Scenario 2: An Iraqi soldier surrenders. You tell him to strip. He strips and reveals that he has bombs strapped to him. You are saved.
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                        • #13
                          Please tell me that this is only being done to men and not women and children. I could understand that albeit a safety inspection, many will find it extremely unfomfortable, demeaning, and improper. After all, Islam believes in dressing appropriately. Such, although for security reasons, wouldnt help much in the "war for hearts and minds".

                          I dunno, I guess it's all an intricate balance.

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                          • #14
                            http://www.poofcat.com/iraq1
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                            • #15
                              Making muslim people to undress is humiliating, and that's why it is done. Officially of course it is for security reasons. Remember, this war was also started for security concerns.

                              As mentioned above, the islam religion calls for appropriate dressing in all situations, especially for women, but also for men. What is done here in the desert is just degrading to muslims worldwide, and will eventually call for Montezumas revenge.

                              Regards,
                              Peter

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