Politics | Falluja in their sights: “Fallujans have now been offered a choice: hand over the outsiders they dislike (mostly Arabs) who are protecting them from the outsiders they really hate (the Americans), or get blown apart by the world’s most lethal killing machine, the US marines. Zarqawi’s influence on the resistance has been wildly exaggerated – indeed, many people in Falluja don’t even believe he exists, and most find the non-Iraqi Arabs’ brand of Salafi fundamentalism at odds with their local Sufi traditions. Today, many Fallujans are tired even of their own mujahideen, but trust the US army even less, and with good reason. Recently, a Bush administration official told the New York Times the bombing was driving a wedge between the citizenry and the non-Iraqi fighters. If, indeed, the civilian population is being bombed for this end, this is a grave war crime”

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