Really. AP writer Robert Reid has absolutely no idea how an Islamic messianic cult that wants to bring about the return of the 12th Imam could have gotten so many weapons:
BAGHDAD, Iraq – Accounts of the bloody battle near Najaf have produced more questions than answers, raising doubts about Iraqi security forces’ performance and concern over tensions within the majority Shiite community.
Among the questions: How did a messianic Shiite cult, the “Soldiers of Heaven,” accumulate so many weapons and — if Iraqi accounts are accurate — display such military skills? Iraqi forces prevailed only after U.S. and British jets blasted the militants with rockets, machine gunfire and 500-pound bombs. Both U.S. and Iraqi reinforcements had to be sent to the fight.
It’s also unclear how a shadowy cult that few Iraqis had ever heard of managed to assemble such a force seemingly without attracting the attention of the authorities earlier. Iraqi officials say the cult planned to slaughter pilgrims and leading clerics at Shiite religious ceremonies Tuesday — only two days after police and soldiers moved to arrest them.
If the “Soldiers of Heaven” were able to accomplish all this, how many other fringe groups may be operating beneath the radar, especially in the politically factious Shiite community of southern
Iraq? Did the cultists have links to other established insurgent or militia groups?
If Mr. Reid had read blogs like this one or LGF or Noisy Room, he wouldn’t have had to ask the question. I’ve written a number of times here at Wizbang about Ahmadinejad’s obsession with the return of the12th Imam, Islam’s messianic figure – see posts here, here, and here just to start. We know that Iran is providing the insurgents with IEDs to use against our troops, and we also have reports that Iranian militants have been found in Iraq, so it makes sense that Ahmadinejad is probably behind this Islamic Messianic cult as well.
Hat tip LGF.
Update: Bill Roggio reports at his blog The Fourth Rail that in addition to the Shi’ite end times cult, al Qaeda in Iraq had a hand in it as well, probably orchestrating the Sunni side.