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September 5, 2004
King Of Clubs Joins Saddam

Reuters reports that Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri, Saddam's #2 on the military side and long suspected of leading the terrorist insurgency in Iraq, has been captured by Iraqi forces in Tikrit:

The most-wanted Saddam Hussein aide in Iraq, Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri, was captured in the town of Tikrit on Sunday, Iraq's defense ministry said.

The ministry said Ibrahim was captured by members of Iraq's national guard backed by U.S. forces. Tikrit was Saddam's hometown and one of the powerbases of his regime. ...

The U.S. military has said Ibrahim was directly involved in organizing and funding attacks on U.S. forces since the fall of Saddam. There was a $10 million bounty on his head, and in a deck of cards issued to U.S. troops to help them identify fugitives, Ibrahim was the King of Clubs. ...

Ibrahim was Saddam's number two in the Revolutionary Command Council, and held a senior post on a government committee in charge of northern Iraq when chemical weapons were used against the town of Halabja in 1988, killing thousands of Kurds.

Not only does al-Douri's capture remind us that the operations in Iraq continue to produce results, the fact that forces of the free government of the new Iraq captured him strengthens their prestige. If al-Douri provided any leadership to the terrorists or even just financial support, the Iraqis should be able to roll up even more of the networks. At the very least, with al-Douri captured, their command and control will be severely compromised.

Let's hope that this will generate similar effects as the capture of al-Qaeda's computer-network genius and allow the Iraqis and the Americans to begin rolling up terrorist leadership throughout Iraq.

UPDATE: Well, maybe not:

Iraq's Defense Minister Hazim al-Shalaan said on Sunday reports on the capture of Izzat Ibrahim al Douri, the most wanted Saddam Hussein aide, were baseless.
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Posted by Ed Morrissey at September 5, 2004 10:42 AM

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