20th March, 2003 02:30 GMT

By Makup Aniol Shyte,
BBCNN 20 March 2003

Iraqi troops around the port city of Basra came under sustained fire late Wednesday after Allied commanders ordered an early attack to stop Iraqi looting, pillaging, raping and cooking of live infants, local sources have stated.

Advancing allied forces came across makeshift ovens in vacated Iraqi positions around the city, which contained the partly cooked bodies of babies, said an allied spokesperson speaking on condition of anonimity.

"Apparently, they have been without food supplies for weeks now and have taken to snatching babies from local women and consuming them in front of the mothers beore raping the women," the spokesperson said.

Official sources are still refusing to confirm the reports, but would not rule them out as a trigger for the allied advance. But a military spokesperson did confirm that Iraqi soldiers have been looting shops and breaking into homes to steal from locals.

"There comes a point where you have to take action to defend the local Iraqi population against intolerable abuses," said Major Slauter Hardon of the British 7th Armoured brigade. "We reached that position late on Wednesday."

However, he refused to comment on reports that British troops have been turning away hordes of Iraqi soldiers who are seeking to surrender to allied units.

"I really cannot confirm that," he said, "but we simply do not have the facilities or capability to cater for mass surrenders this early in the campaign. Best thing for Iraqi soldiers no longer keen to support this evil dictator would be to drop their weapons and go home."


Meanwhile, American convoys moving towards Umm Qasr have reportedly detained a unit of fleeing Iraqi soldiers with incubators likely stolen from the local hospital.

"The incubators still had babies inside," said an officer who refused to identify himself to reporters. "At least in the last Gulf war they had the decency to remove the babies before stealing the incubators. Probably they intended to eat them at some point."

According to other unnamed sources, Allied advances have been slowed by having to clear starving Iraqi soldiers kneeling in the middle of the roads begging food from advancing American troops.


In late developments, a US military spokesman refused to confirm reports that a plane carrying Saddam Hussein had escaped being shot down as the toppled dictator fled to Jordan, because he has forced some of the "human shield" peace protestors to board the plane with him.

Also, late Wednesday force commanders in the Basra area confirmed that they had bombed "command and control" positions which had been cleverly disguised as churches, hospitals and civillian housing.

According to others who have returned from bombing missions, Iraqi psychological warfare brigades have taken to dressing themselves up as civillians and lying on the ground around strategic villages pretending to have their arms and legs blown off.

"We've been here before you know," one officer told reporters at a post raid briefing. "We are not going to fall for such tired old tricks."

"Bet you the next thing is the Iraqi elite Republican Guard will begin shelling and bombing non-military targets in a pathetic effort to incriminate us in these types of actions," allegedly said an unnamed local commander, speaking on condition of anonymous anonimity, according to unconfirmed reports.

  The use of the term "allied commanders" means commanders of the forces of countries which have allied with each other in this war to liberate Iraq. It is not a cheap trick to play off the use of the same term to describe command structures in the Second World War.
  The use of the words "liberate Iraq" means allow democratic structures be established. The issue of the sale of Iraqi natural resources and infrastructure to multinational corporations at knockdown prices is beyond the mission objectives of Allied commanders.

   War fanatical members of the public who happen across this report shoud beware that this is in fact a SATIRICAL article.
    Satire is a form of wry black comedy which relates essential truths in an oblique manner. Persons with war-focussed tunnel vision have been known to mistake this type of material for factual reporting..





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