Asked how long his forces can fight, al-Sadr said: “Let remind you of Vietnam. We are an Iraqi people that has faith in God, and his prophet and his family. The means of victory that are available to us are much more than what the Vietnamese had. And, God willing, we shall be victorious.”
It was the first time al-Sadr had appeared before reporters since his militia, Al-Mahdi Army, launched attacks on coalition troops in Baghdad and several other cities in early April. He said American forces were fighting Islam, and not terrorism in Iraq, and he referred to the abuse of Iraqi detainees by U.S. troops at Saddam Hussein’s notorious Abu Ghraib prison.
“Look at what they have done. Look what the torture they have committed against our detainees. Could anyone who came to rid us of Saddam do this?” al-Sadr said in what was described as an open letter to the American people.