Bill Roggio's latest is about the battle against "extremist elements of Muqtada al Sadr's militia". It's a little confusing.
The Mahdi Army split apart shortly after Sadr and the Mahdi Army leadership fled to Iran after the onset of the Baghdad Security Plan. The Iranian-backed elements, called the "rogue Mahdi Army" by Multinational Forces Iraq, have been targeted at every opportunity by U.S. and Iraqi forces in Baghdad, Diwaniyah, Samawa, Karbala, Basra and throughout the South.
Muqtada al Sadr fled to Iran. His forces split. It seems from what Bill Roggio says that the break-away groups are more extreme. Whatever. Iran is supporting them. And it's also supporting al Sadr, who presumably doesn't. Support the rogue groups, I mean.
It's not that I believe all the above to be impossible. But, if true, it is a good example of the messiness to the situation that the troops have to deal with.
I just wanted to do my part to make everyone aware that Mr. Totten is not reporting the exception, but is instead becoming aware of the “rule.” I base this on my two years experience in the country, on the streets. I implore you to trust my judgment and, because of it, trust Mr. Totten’s assessment as well.