Why the First Amendment Works

Iraqi Cleric Urges Action Against U.S. (washingtonpost.com)

Since May, Moqtada Sadr and his lieutenants have called for the United States and its allies to leave Iraq. Their initially strident, vocal demands were gradually toned down over the course of several months, and U.S. officials have been deeply divided over how to respond.

A particular concern has been Sadr's militia, called the Mahdi Army, which was formed last year and has thousands of members. The United States wants to dissolve the militias affiliated with several Shiite organizations in southern Iraq because of the threat they pose to stability in Iraq after the planned end of the civil occupation on June 30.

Tensions flared anew on Sunday, when American soldiers padlocked the doors of al-Hawza, a weekly newspaper controlled by Sadr. In a letter ordering the closing of the newspaper for 60 days, the U.S. administrator of Iraq, L. Paul Bremer, said it had printed lies that incited violence, although he did not say that it directly advocated violence.

Sadr's followers responded with three massive demonstrations, the first on the night the soldiers arrived at the newspaper's offices in Baghdad.
Freedom of the Press. It's worked to build and preserve democracy in this country for over two hundred years. Bremer should try it sometime in Iraq.