Thursday, June 16, 2005

It's not a Crusade ... no wait, it is

Today's good news from Iraq:

American and Iraqi military forces have captured Al Qaeda's top leader in the Mosul area of Northern Iraq, the United States military announced today ... The military described the captured insurgent, Muhammad Khalaf Shakar, also known as Abu Talha, as Abu Musab al-Zarqawi's most trusted operations agent in Iraq ...

"He was known as the 'emir of Mosul,' " Lt. Gen. James T. Conway said of Mr. Shakar during a Pentagon briefing today.

And who was a previous holder of the title Emir of Mosul?

The First Crusade

... But prosperity led to a weakening of the military spirit, and internal strife crippled the resources of the kingdom. On Christmas day, 1144, the capture of the strong frontier fortress of Edessa by the Emir of Mosul inflicted a serious blow on the Christian power.

One might expect the Pentagon not to embrace Crusader references quite so eagerly.

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