30 Jul '16, 9am

Moqtada al Sadr and his followers in Iraq are 'thirsty for Americans' blood'

Moqtada al Sadr and his followers in Iraq are 'thirsty for Americans' blood'

Iraq's Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, center, speaks to his followers demonstrating at Tahrir Square in Baghdad on July 15, 2016. (Photo: Hadi Mizban/AP) For the first time in years, the Iraqi Shiite cleric Muqtada al Sadr and his militia are unleashing fiery anti-American rhetoric and threatening to attack U.S. troops. But top U.S. military officials have downplayed his remarks, saying that for now there’s no cause for concern. Sadr rose to prominence when his Mahdi Army battled U.S. troops after the 2003 invasion. He has quietly tolerated the comparatively small U.S. military force there now supporting the war on Islamic State extremists. But the powerful cleric became confrontational again after Defense Secretary Ash Carter announced plans on July 11 to send an additional 560 U.S. troops to Iraq, bringing the total to more than 4,600. MILITARYTIMES Size of force in Iraq...

Full article: http://www.militarytimes.com/story/military/war-on-is/201...

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