Friday, May 21, 2010

Book Quote: Civilians Terrorized

From A Soldier's Promise by Daniel Hendrex, Wes Smith (page 158):

The increased American military presence in Husaybah had apparently incited Sayed and his henchmen to crack down on local Iraqis to maintain their control. They were ruthless. They had a group of eight to ten black bag operations guys, probably trained by Steve-O's father. They'd go into the homes of Iraqis, single out the father or mother or a child, and torture or kill them in front of the others to make the point that they would not tolerate American sympathizers. Women and girls were raped. They also used these techniques to force men and boys to fight for them, to plant bombs, or to gain access to the homes they needed as safe houses or weapons caches, lookouts, or ambush sites.

At first, it was hard for me and the other American soldiers to understand why most Iraqi citizens did not respond to our efforts to help them. But it became clear that until we rid them of the predators in their own neighborhoods, the Iraqi people would never be able to embrace the freedom they were being offered.

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