Friday, Mar. 19, 2010

February 2008
Radicals and Refugees

"Al-Qaeda in Iraq wants to poison the next generation of Iraqis."

Rear Adm. Gregory Smith commenting on a video showing masked, armed boys that the U.S. military says is a training and recruiting tool in Iraq

On Feb. 7, American and Iraqi forces release video footage of children as young as 11 being armed and trained by al-Qaeda. A week earlier, two female suicide bombers kill nearly 100 people in Baghdad's popular pet market. Officials initially claim the women had Down syndrome and were unwitting agents in the attack, though the AP later reports there is no evidence to support this claim. To highlight the plight of displaced Iraqis, on February 7th actress Angelina Jolie, acting as a goodwill ambassador for the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees, visits the country, where an estimated 4.2 million residents have fled their homes; half of whom now live in neighboring Syria and Jordan.