Is this a new low?
A letter from President Bush to Iraq's supreme Shiite spiritual leader, Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, was hand-delivered earlier this week but sits unread and untranslated in the top religious figure's office, a key al-Sistani aide told The Associated Press on Thursday.Couple that story with the latest news from Riverbend, who said Iraqi TV news tickers are carrying the following message:
The aide - who has never allowed use of his name in news reports, citing al-Sistani's refusal to make any public statements himself - said the ayatollah had laid the letter aside and did not ask for a translation because of increasing ``unhappiness'' over what senior Shiite leaders see as American meddling in Iraqi attempts to form their first, permanent post-invasion government.
“The Ministry of Defense requests that civilians do not comply with the orders of the army or police on nightly patrols unless they are accompanied by coalition forces working in that area.”
That’s how messed up the country is at this point... It confirmed what has been obvious to Iraqis since the beginning- the Iraqi security forces are actually militias allied to religious and political parties.
But it also brings to light other worrisome issues. The situation is so bad on the security front that the top two ministries in charge of protecting Iraqi civilians cannot trust each other. The Ministry of Defense can’t even trust its own personnel, unless they are “accompanied by American coalition forces”.