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RUSH: Back to the phones to Fred in Rice Lake, Wisconsin. Hello, Fred. Welcome to the program.
CALLER: Good morning, Rush. I’m a long-term listener, and after hundreds of attempts to get through to you, I’m glad that I’ve got more than just a busy signal. I have two questions that I’d sure like to hear your answers to.
RUSH: Fine.
CALLER: Of the many pictures that I’ve seen of al-Sadr, I have yet to see one of him with a halo over his head. Why haven’t the American forces been permitted to eliminate him and his militia? And the other question is: What would the situation be in Iraq today had we eliminated al-Sadr?
RUSH: See, I can give you my opinion on this, but it’s just like anybody else’s opinion on this. I’m uninformed in terms of the political strategery that might exist into not touching Mookie — or maybe there was a strategery at one point to touch him and we’ve missed. I do know that in the original days when Mookie was first becoming a star over there in Fallujah, I believe, they were told to leave him alone. In fact —
CALLER: (Noise.)
RUSH: Fred, what’s going on out there? Are you talking to somebody?
CALLER: No. There was a vehicle that went by here. I’m sitting in my car with a cell phone here.
RUSH: Oh, oh. I thought maybe you were you listening to the radio to hear yourself on it.
CALLER: No.
RUSH: Nevertheless, the first time obviously, we should have razed Fallujah. We didn’t do it the first time. That strengthened Mookie within the eyes of his own people. He’s now fled the scene. On the verge of the surge, Mookie is reportedly, reputedly in Iran planning strategy, and there are differing views on whether he ran because he’s afraid of being killed or he ran away to fight another day and plan new strategy and so forth. I can’t answer why we haven’t targeted him, if that’s the case.
I can only go back and look at past successful military operations and campaigns. All I know is that one of the objectives was to take out the commanders, take out the leaders, take out generals, as well as take out civilians. We would not have won World War II had we not done so. In fact, in reading some of the background? I watched Flags of Our Fathers with Clint Eastwood, the story about raising of the flag on Iwo Jima. Then the second movie, Letters from Iwo Jima, the Clint Eastwood movie from the Japanese perspective — which is its own controversy, by the way. But in the process of informing myself on this… I can’t remember who said this. It was a US military man involved in World War II in Japan. He said, ?We wiped out more innocent civilians in Japan with 1300 bombing runs than the two atomic bombs at Hiroshima and Nagasaki.? The conclusion that you draw is we won the war because we were targeting innocent civilians, and this was happening as well in the European theater.
War has changed. The rules have changed, and this is not part of it. As to what would have happened had we taken Mookie out? It could not have been anything other than positive. Of course, some people said, ?You can’t do that! It’s just going to make them angrier.? Well, it didn’t stop us from killing Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. Maybe we’ve tried and failed. I don’t know. These people hide in places we don’t hit: mosques, citizens’ homes or dressed up as innocent women and children and so forth. But I get the point. A lot of people are asking, “Why haven’t we just gone in with hell blazing from the get-go?” and that’s what the surge is intended to rectify, at least in parts of Baghdad.

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