Reporters on the Job

Into Najaf: Correspondent Ann Scott Tyson was in Najaf, Iraq, last summer. During her latest visit (page 1), she was struck by how much control - and attention - rebel cleric Moqtada al-Sadr still has in the city. "Posters of Sadr are much more prominent now. There's a huge billboard on the main road leading to the Imam Ali shrine, Shiite Muslim's holiest place. The billboard shows a photo of Sadr in the middle, with Shiite Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani and another ayatollah both glancing toward him. Underneath, in Arabic and English it says: "Men are created for me."

Ann also noted that Iraqis in Najaf live in fear of Sadr and his militia. "When I asked people about Sadr, they would lower their voice, look around nervously," she says. "They seemed afraid of saying anything about him. One woman with six sons says that she's desperate to get work for her sons so that they won't be recruited by Sadr's militia. She said they control the neighborhood, and if anyone says anything bad about Sadr, they are hauled before a sharia court."

David Clark Scott
World editor

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