Suicide Car Bombers Kill 8 in Baghdad
Edited for topic:
A suicide driver roared through the gates of a police station in Baghdad’s biggest Shiite Muslim slum Thursday morning and detonated his car bomb in the courtyard, killing eight policemen and civilians and injuring up to 45 people, authorities reported. The driver and a passenger also were killed. Some 50 officers had gathered outside in the compound at about 8:30 a.m. to collect their pay when the white Oldsmobile sped up, police opened fire on it, the bomber crashed into a parked vehicle, and the car exploded. "I ran and got hit in the leg. When I looked back, all I could see was fire," officer Khalid Sattar Jabar, 25, said from his hospital bed. He said he got a look at the driver: a man with a beard and a thick head of hair.
Real holy men don’t shave.
Mangled police cars were scattered around the bomb site and debris filled the big courtyard in front of the one-story police building. The blast left a crater about 10 feet across and 4 feet deep, a U.S. Army officer at the scene said. Three policemen and five civilians were killed, said Capt. Sean Kirley of the 2nd Armored Cavalry Regiment. In addition, two people in the car died, said Iraqi police Capt. Bassem Sami.
They don’t count.
Sami said 28 people were wounded, but police at Al-Kindi Hospital said 28 wounded were being treated there while officials at Qasim al-Mubarka hospital said they had at least nine. Police said they had reports of an additional eight wounded at Ibn Nafees Hospital. Angry residents thronged the area around the police station after the bombing, and scores of U.S. soldiers surrounded the building in Humvees. An Iraqi policeman who pushed through the thousands-strong crowd was stabbed in the upper right arm after being set upon by the mob, which chanted "No, no to America!" He was treated by U.S. military medics at the scene. Associated Press Television News camera crews also were attacked by the crowds and had some equipment stolen. One crew member was slightly injured. Scores of other journalists were jostled by the crowd.

Rumors flew about who might be responsible: Some blamed ultraorthodox Wahhabi Sunni Muslims, religious enemies of the Shiites; policemen said they had been threatened by a local Shiite imam; and others blamed Saddam’s ousted Baathists and - indirectly - the Americans. Inside, a police sergeant who was wounded in the legs, Saad Drawal al-Dharaji, 29, said a local imam had threatened to take action against the police station unless it turned over some policemen for "punishment" for having served under Saddam. "We will have our revenge for this," al-Dharaji said. He said he didn’t know the name of the clergyman. A fellow sergeant, Jassim Mohsen, 31, confirmed that duty officers earlier this week recorded the threats, made in both last Friday’s sermon and in letters to the police.
Cops take cop killers very seriously, there tends to be a lot of people injured "resisting arrest".
Wounded officer Jabar, meanwhile, mentioned another possible motive for a bombing: Demonstrators had rallied at the police station on Wednesday to demand release of Shiite cleric Moayed al-Khazraji, arrested by the U.S. occupation force on Monday and accused of unspecified "criminal and anti-coalition activities." Those protesters dispersed peacefully. "We didn’t have the imam," Jabar said.
"He ain’t here, try the airport."

Posted by: Steve 2003-10-09