An Iraq Cleric's Knotty Reemergence

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Today's news that the radical Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr is back in the spotlight after a four-month absence throws another monkey wrench into the U.S.-led efforts to secure Baghdad.

In a fiery sermon today, Sadr instructed his followers not to engage Iraqi troops but was expressly anti-American.

Here are three stories from the U.S.News & World Report archives about Sadr and his powerful militia:

  • Clerical Error: Having Overestimated His Support, al-Sadr Backs Down, May 30, 2004
  • Moqtada al-Sadr's Deadly Game of Chicken, Aug. 22, 2004
  • Men in Black: Why Iraq's Shiite Militias Are So Brutally Effective, Dec. 10, 2006