U.S. armed forces, euphemistically called “coalition forces” have entered the small city of Husaybah with 3500 troops. They are supported by fighter planes dropping 500 pound bombs, no doubt with care and precision so that civilians don’t get hurt. The target is al Qaeda insurgents. The troops have met with little resistance and no soldiers have been killed but two of them were wounded in the two day battle, leading one officer, Captain Carabine, to declare “We met with more resistance than I expected.” Another officer, General Alston, told the press “We are not meeting with stiff resistance.” In Baghdad, Abdul-Hamid, head of the Iraq Islamic Party, said he objected to the offensive because it will surely kill innocent people and lead to the destruction of the city.
For all I or anyone else knows the targets may be members of al Qaeda but they don’t wear badges saying, “I am an al Qaeda terrorist.” As to why any military operation has to have a name, I don’t know but I prefer Man O’ War, after the great steed of the 1920s.
The NY Times story on the raid says nothing about the objections by Islamic leaders of which Abdul-Hamid was but one of several. Nor does the Times story, written by an “embedded” reporter question the claim that the targets were properly identified.