Dreams and reality

Dubya, May 1, 2003:

“Major combat operations in Iraq have ended.”

Associated Press, August 12, 2004 (emphasis added):

Thousands of U.S. and Iraqi soldiers launched a major assault on militiamen loyal to a radical Shiite cleric Thursday, with explosions and gunfire echoing near Najaf’s revered Imam Ali shrine and its vast cemetery. . . . .

Major operations to destroy the militia have begun,” said Maj. David Holahan, executive officer of the 1st Battalion, 4th Marine Regiment.

Thousands of U.S. troops were participating, he said.

Reuters, August 12, 2004:

In the southeastern city of Kut, at least 72 people were killed in U.S. air raids and fighting between Iraqi police and the Mehdi Army Thursday, the Health Ministry said.

It said 25 people were killed in clashes in Baghdad and 21 in other cities in the past 24 hours. There were no immediate casualty figures from the Najaf offensive.

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