Insomnia (insomnia) wrote,

Unexpected email...

Recently, I emailed Riverbend, a 24-year-old female programmer in Iraq, who asked in her weblog recently:

Why is no one covering this: Parallel Government Finds Support?!

She's got a point. There is a shortage of news articles out there covering this. However, there were some, so I emailed her with links to several, some of which I used in my last post.

She was nice enough to email me back, and had several interesting things to say...

- She put the number of his supporters at 1-2 million. This is much higher than the numbers I have heard in the past, and equates to roughly 5-10% of the Iraqi population.

- She has seen very little coverage of Al-Sadr's shadow government on either CNN or the BBC, but it is a huge, looming issue for the Iraqis.

- Educated, secular Iraqis view Sadr as young, rash, and unqualified to lead so many people. His militia is seen as violent, repressive, and frighteningly loyal to him.

Obviously, arresting Al-Sadr could become a very big deal. Meanwhile, US forces have already started raids on his followers...

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