KR Washington Bureau | 01/08/2005 | As Iraqis return to Fallujah, many find everything they knew destroyed
After months of air strikes, the November fighting was marked by heavy barrages of artillery, tank fire and house-to-house battles. Bradley Fighting Vehicles rammed front gates and fired grenades through walls. Hundreds if not thousands of homes were left in shambles.miscalculations? Don't understand Arab culture? Surly, they're not talking about our fearless leaders.
So far, about 40,000, or fewer than 20 percent of the town's population, have begun coming back, according to Lt. Gen. Thomas Metz, the senior U.S. ground commander in Iraq. The Iraqi interim government on Saturday put the figure at 60,000 and said it expected the rest to return by Jan. 14.
"The insurgents are destined to failure, and freedom will prevail," Metz said. "For example, in recent operations in Fallujah we denied the insurgents, terrorists, a safe haven."
Others contend that in their attempt to quash the insurgency, U.S. troops may have only strengthened its ranks, creating a generation of Iraqis so inflamed by the assault that they take up arms.
"In the coming days, there will be suicide attacks on that town. They will use the same methods as the (Palestinian) Hamas movement," said Salman al Jumaili, a Baghdad University professor, insurgency expert and Fallujah native.
Nadhim Jassour agreed. A professor of international relations at Baghdad University, Jassour said "the Americans were mistaken in their calculations ... they must understand that revenge is an Arab characteristic."
The article is worth a read.