According to a report in the Wall Street Journal, Moqtada al-Sadr, one of the most powerful leaders in Iraq’s armed resistance to the government, has agreed to cease any further military action against the government of Prime Minister Maliki and American forces in Iraq. In the future the militia will focus on education, religion, and provision of social services. The alleged document says clearly that any followers of Sadr are “not allowed to use arms at all.” The dissolution of the Mahdi army will make peace a more likely occurrence in Iraq and will enable the Iraqi government to assert its power throughout the nation. Sadr spent several weeks in Iran studying religion and his switch indicates a decision to focus on politically gaining power in Iraq.
the Mahdi army spokesman, Sheikh Salah al-Obeidi told the Wall Street Journal his group would be guided by spirituality rather than battling US forces. Sadr’s mem males numerous references to suppression of vice and acting in morally correct ways. These words could be construed as ensuring women will not have the same rights of equality as they enjoyed under the regime of Saddam Hussein.