Wednesday, March 25, 2009

It's fear (and ethnic cleansing) that keeps Baghdad's peace

BAGHDAD – The streets are calmer now. The fighting between Shiites and Sunnis has largely ceased. But this is not a sign of normalcy in the Iraqi capital. It's fear that keeps the peace.
Only an estimated 16 percent of the mainly Sunni families forced by Shiite militiamen and death squads to flee their homes have dared to return.
It takes two sides to have a fight, and there's really only one side left in Baghdad after violence and fear turned parts of neighborhoods into ghost towns.
Families that have gone back are sometimes met with spray-painted threats and other forms of intimidation.

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