Suicide bomber kills Iraqi lawmaker who was prominent Awakening leader

Long War Journal – A suicide bomber killed a prominent Iraqi parliamentarian and five others near Fallujah on Tuesday afternoon. Sheikh Aifan Sadoun Aifan al-Issawi, a member of the secular, Sunni-backed Iraqiya political bloc and one of the leaders of Iraq’s Sunni tribal Awakening, was attacked as he inspected a road construction project south of the city. Two civilians and three of the sheikh’s bodyguards were also killed in the explosion, and at least four others were wounded.

In addition to being a member of Iraq’s national parliament, Aifan was a sheikh of the Albu Issa tribe and one of the founders of Fallujah’s tribal “Awakening” movement during 2006 that was largely responsible for the improvement in Iraq’s security over the subsequent two years. Known to many American military personnel from that period by his nickname, “Dark,” Sheikh Aifan was the first Fallujan to form and lead an American-allied militia against al Qaeda on the rural peninsula south of the famously restive city.

Aifan has survived numerous attempts on his life since his public opposition to radical insurgents allied with al Qaeda in Iraq and their shadow government, the Islamic State of Iraq. On March 16, 2007, al Qaeda-affiliated insurgents detonated a dump truck filled with explosives and chlorine gas canisters in his village of Albu Aifan, in an attempt to kill him and other tribal leaders who had defied the Islamic State of Iraq. Several civilians were killed in the chemical attack, including three children and Aifan’s mother. The event is widely regarded as an atrocity that galvanized widespread tribal support against al Qaeda in the Fallujah area.

“They killed a lot of kids and innocent people,” Aifan told the Long War Journal in a 2011 interview. “I told my people, you see, they killed the kids, they killed the women. Why did they send the big tank with the chlorine? And a lot of people when they saw these bad things happen, they stopped sitting in their house, they felt they should fight, or at minimum, they should support us to fight al Qaeda. And thankfully, the people Awakened.”

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“Love him or hate him, he was a complex individual who did much good at a critical time for his country and ours. I bid peace to him”. – LW BlackFive

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  • 911Infidel

    I bid peace to his family.

  • That’s too bad. Still too much bad going on over there no matter how hard the locals and our troops are trying their hardest to over come. My prayers go out to the victims families as well.

    • No matter how much “democracy” breaks out in that region, these assassinations will NEVER cease. It is simply WHO THEY ARE…they may cherish Democracy and Freedom, but only until someone says/does something they don’t like, in which case they will blow up an entire 10-story building to kill someone they HOPE is inside, without even verifying that to be the case.

      Lives mean NOTHING to them, and no amount of reform will change that, REGARDLESS of which political party controls their “Government”. That is also why their police force will never work, since it is virtually guaranteed that 50% of their force WILL be divided against the other half, since they come from the same violent community and share the same bigotry, insanity, and psycopathy…

      • I know Brian. But I still feel bad. For the few folks over there who really do want freedom from tyrants and dictators. It makes me cry for those of ours who died fighting to give it to them, and those who are still over there trying.

  • On the bright side, at least he doesn’t have to listen to Obama and Hillary lies for the next 4 years.

  • What a shame but if you stand back and look at the big picture known as the ME radicals are gradually taking over the entire thing.

  • Godisright

    Disheartening to see the unraveling. The ultimate sacrifice that so many Americans made on that soil is constantly on my mind – thinking of and thanking you vets also!

  • Army_Pilot1967

    One step forward……ten steps backwards!!!!

  • sDee

    Why we must fight islam at every gate.

    There are two steady states for a muslim countries:
    A brutal dictatorship to suppress sharia or
    A brutual theocracy under sharia.

    Everything else is a state of transition between the two.

    • c4pfan

      We aren’t fighting them though.

      • Nukeman60

        In between is expansion.

    • Conniption Fitz

      …a state of violent, chaotic transition between the two, which makes three brutal, inhumane and unjust states which the fellowhip of nations must not and should not tolerate, I might add.

      Any practice of Islam constitutes a violation of morality and human rights.

      I’m beginning to grow angry about US involvement in Islamic hell-holes.

      We are bleeding the most precious substance, the lives of our best and brightest for nothing. We should fight with words and banishment. Condemnation and the demand for reform is the right response. With all further wars being declared by both houses of legislature, Senate and Congress not by executive order.

      • notsofastthere

        We get involved with the intention to contain and not an intention to win
        Commander in Chief doesn’t listen to commanders on the ground
        We abandon Dr. Afridi and others who assist us
        We supply radical elements with weapons, ammunition, and training only to turn on us
        Our troops are advised they will get medals for restraint. They are just numbers to those in DC, and very expendable. The wole thing is a real mess

  • c4pfan

    No surprise there. After Obama and Hillary fanning the flames of hate.

  • I wonder if this represents a major shift away from the more secular elements of Iraqis and a triumph for the much more conservative fundamentalists? It would almost be as if the crazy ultra-conservative Salafists took over all of Egypt, not even wasting time with the more “moderate” Muslim Brotherhood. This bears watching, because if this IS a shift in power in Iraq, that country could become just another religious basket case like Iran or Egypt (which is rapidly becoming just like Iran). Obama sits and watches helplessly, while all of the blood and treasure we invested in Iraq slips away. Unless somebody starts supporting the more secular groups in Iraq real soon, you will have either a fractured country (because the Kurds will never agree to anything the Sunnis or Shias want) or you could have a civil war. Neither option looks good right now.

  • Goldni007

    Man I feel for good people over there. You know those families are hurting. What a mess of neanderthals.

  • Conniption Fitz

    There is a bombing a day on average in Pakistan. On the whole, Islamists enact several deadly jihadi attacks per day. There have been 20.200+ deadly jihad attacks since 9/11/01 and untold deaths, injuries and rapes.

    Yes, sexual assault and sexual slavery and treating women and people of different religions as less than human are part and parcel of the Mohammedan culture. Hatred of Israel and Jews is also part of their repertoire – it’s written in the Koran.

    The practice of Islam IS a state of war, a violation of human rights, freedom, justice, honesty and decency.

    • Conniption Fitz

      2013.01.25 (Kapisa, Afghanistan) – Five civilians are dismantled by a Fedayeen suicide bomber.
      2013.01.23 (Maiduguri, Nigeria) – Boko Haram Islamists burn down a school and shoot four people to death.
      2013.01.23 (Maiduguri, Nigeria) – Religion of Peace proponents behead five people in their homes.
      2013.01.23 (Tuz Khurmatu, Iraq) – A Shahid self-detonates inside a packed mosque, sending at least forty-two souls to Allah.
      2013.01.23 (Narathiwat, Thailand) – A teacher is shot to death by Muslim ‘insurgents’ in front of dozens of children.
      2013.01.22 (Karachi, Pakistan) – A prominent doctor is among two Shias gunned down by Sunni radicals.

      via –

      • Conniption Fitz


        For some unknown reason, our frienemy Pakistan decided to release all Taliban prisoners. After all, even thought the US has been fighting the Taliban for years in several countries, Joe Biden says the Taliban are not our enemy.

        Today, Taliban killed 31 in Pakistan.

        Sounds like Obama-style liberal think – aka irrationality, delusion, dementia.

    • notsofastthere

      And we keep giving billions of unaccountable money to the leaders of these countries, who play both sides of the fence. It would seem that money can’t buy you love.