The following is a sampling of media reports and interviews expressing views of Operation Iraqi Freedom from newsmakers, officials and journalists in the Middle East.
The following is an excerpt from the news
organization’s Web site.
Iraqi Information Minister Mohammed Saeed al-Sahaf said the Iraqi forces continued to fight invading troops. “The valiant Republican Guards are encircling the enemy near the airport. We destroyed six tanks and damaged 10 others and killed 50 of the enemies’ forces,” Sahaf told a news conference. “After crushing the American and British aggression and invasion there will only be Iraq, with all its traditions…and all its institutions,” he said. … “This is just a scene from hell here. There are vehicles on fire, bodies lying around, and there are bits of bodies around me,” said the BBC’s John Simpson, who was with the convoy….An ICRC spokeswoman in Geneva said the situation in the city was becoming desperate.
The Daily Star
The following is an excerpt from an article on the Lebanese newspaper’s Web site.
BAGHDAD, Iraq # The scream of missiles, the sound of distant explosions and the crackle of anti-aircraft fire filled the air as darkness fell on Baghdad Sunday. Raging battles continued just outside the city and the bursts of what appeared to be heavy machine gun fire could be heard. “God is great and to him we owe thanks” was beamed from mosque loudspeakers as fresh explosions shook the city…. “This morning our forces fired missile strikes on the enemy concentration which dared to approach the outskirts of Baghdad,” a military spokesman said on Iraqi television.
…Many Iraqi civilians were packing up and leaving the city to escape the fighting and feared street battles coalition leaders say could be the bloodiest part of the campaign to topple the Iraqi regime. Thousands of residents have left in recent days, with cars piled high with everything from mattresses to water cans. Iraq imposed a night-time ban for civilians to leave Baghdad from 6 pm to 6 am.
Their exodus was slowed by the flow of US convoys rumbling toward Baghdad along roads and through marshland dotted with the bodies of soldiers and charred vehicles. “It is getting dangerous. The battle is in Baghdad now,” Haitham Abdel-Rahman, a 45-year-old engineer, said of the thuds of short-range weapons.
The Yemen Times
This newspaper’s Web site posted a news story about Yemen citizens attempting to go to Iraq to fight U.S. and British troops. Below is an excerpt from that article.
…Despite the superiority of the US military, there is hope amid Yemenis and Arabs that the US forces will not be able to continue for too long. “We will do our best alongside our Iraqi brothers to find Americans face to face” said one of the Yemenis who arrived in Baghdad recently to fight US forces. The Yemeni government however, tried to limit the number of Yemenis leaving to Baghdad as much as possible. It was reported that Yemeni authorities at Sana’a airport prevented Thursday 29 persons from leaving the country for Syria on their way to Iraq to join 30 others who have already arrived in Baghdad last Wednesday. The volunteer fighters denounced behavior by the airport authority and even clashed with them. Some of them were arrested while others set a strike inside the airport for some hours and went back home without their passports….