Frame 0004
Shiite Militias Replace Iraqi Army on...
Karbala
By mushtaq mohammed
26 May 2015

Karbala, Iraq
May 26, 2015

Militants from Saraya al-Salam (Peace Brigades) Shiite militia, part of the Popular Mobilization military umbrella group, have taken positions along the border between the province of Karbala and Ramadi area that had been abandoned by the Iraqi army.
The footage shows the deputy governor of Karbala province and officers from Iraqi government forces on visiting Saraya al-Salam positions and inspecting ammunition that was left by Iraqi troops.

TRANSCRIPT

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Man) Ammar al-Anaizi, Official Spokesperson of Saraya al-Salam
00:30 – 01:25

“Today, while conducting patrols in the area under our control, we found some vehicles and weapons that have the insignia of the Ministry of Defense and Ministry of Interior [that were left] during the recent battles in Anbar. We coordinated with our brethren in the Iraqi Ministry of Defense – specifically in the command of the central Euphrates area – who were told about the number of vehicles and weapons found.
Our brethren [the officials] visited Saraya al-Salam’s base to coordinate the transportation of this equipment.
There are no administrative borders that could prevent Saraya al-Salam from safeguarding this country. All of this is done in coordination with the Iraqi government and state. God willing, we shall fight against this brute aggression, intellectually, politically and militarily.”

01:25 – 01:51
“This district lies in the western and south-western parts of Karbala. The district falls under the control of Saraya al-Salam, which is protecting the land and people in this area.”

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Man) Jassem al-Fatlawy, Deputy Governor of Karbala Province
04:12 – 04:52

“We are close to the border with Anbar province – the beloved province that has been violated by ISIS. We are here today to inspect the units and bases of our brothers from the Popular Mobilization, especially Saraya al-Salam, who took control of these positions. The presence of Saraya al-Salam members in this area promoted security in Karbala. This province will not be subject to any assaults by terrorists. In other areas, wherever Saraya al-Salam was present there was security. ISIS does not dare to confront Saraya al-Salam.

04:52 – 05:06

Q: What is preventing [Saraya al-Salam] from entering Anbar?
A: The instructions given by his Eminence Sayyid [Muqtada al-Sadr] are to defend the sacred provinces. If his Eminence gives orders to enter [Anbar], the brothers will do so. Lives are not too precious to be sacrificed for the sake of this precious country.”

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Man) Ahmad Abu Ali, Fighter of Saraya al-Salam
05:07 – 05:27

“Our unit is part of Saraya al-Salam, which is responsible for protecting sacred Karbala. According to the instructions of His Eminence, the holy shrines are a red line. No terrorist can desecrate them. We are fully prepared at all times. We are on full alert. God willing, we shall achieve victory and liberate Iraq.”

05:27 – 05:44
“Q: Why did you not enter areas that are currently held by ISIS? Are you worried of any lack of equipment? A: No, there is no such lack. We are specialised in gathering information in order to put a plan. [UNINTELLIGIBLE] We have a complete military plan.”

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Man) Maitham, Fighter of Saraya al-Salam
05:55
“Q: Why have you not entered areas held by ISIS? Are you worried about any lack of weapons? A: We follow the orders of leader [Muqtada al-Sadr] may he be sanctified. If he says that we should jump in the fire we would do it. But we follow the orders of our leader.”

Frame 0004
ICRC Distributes Aid to Iraqi Refugee...
Karbala, Iraq
By mushtaq mohammed
26 May 2015

May 26, 2015
Karbala, Iraq

Video shows members of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) distributing aid to Iraqi refugees from Mosul and Anbar in Karbala.
The video also includes interviews with Alwan Kamel, the spokesman of the ICRC in Iraq, Leila Zeineddin, a member of the local government of Karbala and refugees.

Frame 0004
Iraqi Shiite Militia Mobilizes
Karbala
By mushtaq mohammed
20 May 2015

Members of the Iraqi Shiite Badr Organization militia, part of the so-called Popular Mobilization Forces, prepare to travel to Anbar Province to battle Islamic State forces following their takeover of the city of Ramadi.

Frame 0004
Shiite Iraqi Militia Defies US, ISIS
Iraq
By mushtaq mohammed
02 May 2015

Karbala, Iraq
May 2, 2015

The Iraqi Shiite militia Saraya al-Salam (Peace Brigades), which is led by cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, held a military parade in Karbala in defiance of a recent US Congress bill to send weapons to Sunni and Kurdish fighters directly.
While fighters of various ages chanted slogans against the United States as well as ISIS, a member of the Provincial Council of Karbala who supports Sadr said in an interview that Saraya al-Salam are able to push ISIS out of the areas it still controls.

TRANSCRIPT

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Man) Nasser Hassani, Member of the Provincial Council of Karbala
02:00 – 02:43

“In fact, this demonstration is spontaneous and came in support of the leader [Muqtada al-Sadr] to condemn the decision taken by the US – the different political parties in the US – to divide Iraq. This is the beginning of Iraq’s division, and the leader has mentioned this issue. On the other hand, concerning the liberation of Iraqi territories held by ISIS, we are ready to act upon the request of the leader. We have prepared ourselves and set an excellent example for each patriotic individual who loves Iraq and loves his country.”

Frame 0004
Long Delays at Checkpoints for Refuge...
Karbala, Iraq
By mushtaq mohammed
20 Apr 2015

Some one hundred families have been stuck in the desert, waiting for hours at checkpoints manned by Iraqi government forces, as they attempt to flee their homes in Anbar and Salahuddine towards the predominantly Shiite province of Karbala.

ISIS militants launched an offensive on Ramadi, the capital of Anbar, in mid-April 2015, and were able to seize at least three villages.

SHOTLIST AND TRANSCRIPT

Various of refugees in the outdoors

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Woman) Shamia Ibrahim, Refugee from Ramadi
00:47 – 01:42

“We were displaced from Ramadi by the indiscriminate bombing and airstrikes. We came to Karbala so that people would take care of us and help us. We have suffered. Q: Why did you come to Karbala?
A: We came looking for safety. We want to find a place where we can settle down with our children.
Q: Why are waiting in the desert?
A: We are waiting… we came to Karbala because we want them to consider our situation. We need you to help us. Helps and take our situation into consideration. You can see our situation.
Q: What do you think about the security measures? Are they good? Are they strict?
A: They are very good. They helped and let us in and treated us very well from the start. They have been good to us.
Q: What is your name?
A: Shamia Ibrahim.”

Close-up of registration plate from Baghdad
Various of refugees
Close-up of registration plate from Anbar
Medium of refugees eating
Various of security personnel searching vehicles

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Man) Abu Fouad, Refugee from Ramadi
02:44 – 03:24

“You do not feel safe at home. Bombs are falling and there are militiamen. A gas canister costs 40,000 dinars. A liter of gasoline costs 2,000 dinars. A kilogram of tomatoes costs 3,000 dinars. There is no work. We stayed on the road for two days. We were held at each checkpoint for four to five hours. Guards repeat the same procedures at each checkpoint, even though the distance is only 30 km. The procedures are very tough. We have been on the road since the morning and we have not reached Karbala.”

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Woman), Um Mohamad, A refugee from Tikrit
03:31 – 04:26

“Q: Where do you come from? A: I have come from Tikrit.
Q: From Tikrit?
A: Yes from Tikrit.
Q: Why did you come to Karbala?
A: We have been displaced. Our homes were bombed. We do not have any houses left. When can we go?
Q: Honestly, what do you think about the way you have been received in Karbala?
A: Thanks be to God, it is good.
Q: Why do you mean by ‘good’? Were you allowed in?
A: The checkpoint let us through, but they are searching us.
Q: [UNINTELLIGIBLE]
A: Let them search. We do not have anything [to hide].
Q: At the end, will they let you in?
A: I do not know. But why would they not let us? We do not carrying anything [threatening].
Q: Who did you exactly run away from? ISIS? The Iraqi army? The Popular Mobilization?
A: I do not know. Everyone fled and we fled with them.
Q: Why did they flee?
A: I do not know. People were scared.”

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Man) Amjad Ali Talab, Refugee from Anbar
04:27 – 05:56

“From Anbar. We came to flee the suffering due to the bombing by mortars and artillery. We came by car. The checkpoints searched and helped us. They conducted their duties properly and did everything they should. We came to Karbala looking for safety and a place to settle in.”

Close-up of food leftovers
Various of refugees

Frame 0004
Iraqis Flee ISIS Attack on Ramadi and...
Karbala
By mushtaq mohammed
15 Apr 2015

Dozens of Anbar province residents have fled their homes and headed to the Shiite-majority province of Karbala.

People interviewed at checkpoints said that they left their homes in fear of an onslaught by ISIS. They added that they feel safe to be in Karbala.
Anbar is a predominantly Sunni area.

Iraqi government forces have started to dig a trench to isolate desert areas of Karbala from Anbar and Babel provinces. Coverage of this story can be found here: https://transterramedia.com/media/59441

TRANSCRIPT

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Man) Ali Taleb Abbas al-Jumaili, Displaced person heading to Karbala.
00:00 – 01:30

“I am from Anbar province, al-Karma district. I will go to Baghdad or any other place. Ramadi has been bombed and ISIS has done so much and killed people. There are no safe areas left in Anbar. Interviewer: You are Sunni. Are you not scared of going to a Shiite area?
Why would I be scared? They are our families. My clan is located in Karbala, Hilla, Mahmoudiya.
Interviewer: What do you think about the security measures?
The measures are very good. They are treating us very well. People have been inviting me to stay with them.
Interviewer: What is your name?
Ali Taleb Abbas al-Jumaili."

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Woman) Um Eyad, Displaced person heading to Karbala
00:46 – 04:31

“Interviewer: Are you from Fallujah? Yes, Fallujah.
Interviewer: Why did you leave your house and come to Karbala?
We fled the bombing. Rockets have wrecked our homes. We left because we were scared.
Interviewer: How was the road?
It was rough.
Interviewer: Did you all leave your homes?
Yes, we left our homes. God is witness. Houses have been destroyed. We fled because we were scared. We took the families and went away.”

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Woman) Unnamed displaced person heading to Karbala
04:32 – 05:26

“I am from Karma. Interviewer: In Fallujah?
Yes.
Interviewer: Why did you leave your homes?
We left because of the situation. We brought the families and came here.
Interviewer: Was the bombing carried out by ISIS? The Iraqi forces?
We fled ISIS.
Interviewer: Did you feel threatened?
Yes, we did.
We were besieged. We were scared of ISIS and the bombing.
Interviewer: How the people of Karbala, the police and the army receive you?
Thanks be to God, they have done everything they should have.
Interviewer: Why are you sitting here?
We are waiting for the car search to be over. "

Frame 0004
Trench Shields Shiite Iraqi Province ...
Karbala
By mushtaq mohammed
27 Mar 2015

Karabala, Iraq
March 27, 2015

A trench is being dug on the border of the southern Shiite-majority Iraqi province of Karbala with the provinces of al-Anbar and Babel. The ditch, which extends for 50km, is 6m deep and 10m wide and is guarded by surveillance towers and checkpoints manned by Iraqi government forces and a Shiite militia known as the Al-Abbas Combat Division.

Colonel Hassan al-Silawi, the commander of the 33rd Infantry Brigade in the Iraqi army, said in an interview that this trench aims to keep ISIS fighters from entering Karbala from al-Anbar province. Silawi denied that this obstacle was conceived to separate Sunni and Shiite populations.

Another interviewed officer denied claims made by Sunni politicians that the aim of the trench was to annex territory to the province Karbala. The city of Karbala hosts the tomb of Imam Hussein, one of the holiest shrines for Shiite Muslims.

SHOTLIST AND TRANSCRIPT

Wide of soldiers standing next to surveillance tower
Wide of trench
Various of soldiers guarding trench
Wide of Iraqi army Humvee and soldier
Wide of soldiers running on sand barrier
Interview with Colonel Hassan al-Silawi, Commander of the 33rd Infantry Brigade
Wide of soldiers next to sand barricade
Various of soldier manning machinegun behind sand barricade
Various of soldiers guarding trench
Various of soldiers and military vehicles next to sand barricade
Interview with Colonel Hassan al-Silawi, Commander of the 33rd Infantry Brigade
Various of soldiers and military vehicles
Wide of pickup truck moving and banner with Shiite religious symbols
Wide of tents and Iraqi flags
Interview with Major Jaber Ahmed, Infantry Platoon Commander
Various of trench
Various of soldier in surveillance tower looking through binoculars
Wide of soldiers and vehicles at checkpoint. Phrase written with bricks in Arabic reads: “Long live Iraq.”
Wide of solider next to Iraqi flag
Wide of Iraqi soldier on guard

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Man) Colonel Hassan al-Silawi, Commander of the 33rd Infantry Brigade
01:18 – 02:50

“The trench extends for about 50km along the administrative border between the provinces of Babel and Karbala. No, it is not about Sunni or Shiite provinces. This trench is an obstacle set up for military purposes. It has nothing to do with whether an area is Sunni or Shiite. This is a desert. These lands do not belong to any individual; they belong to the Ministry of Agriculture.

"The trench will be guarded by platoons from the 33rd Infantry Brigade in addition to groups from the Popular Mobilization [Shiite militia umbrella], especially the Al-Abbas Combat Division. The trench was dug by the province of the holy Karbala in agreement with the local governments of neighboring provinces. This system involves surveillance towers and cameras, as well as a dirt barrier that is 5m high and 6m wide.

"This trench was dug in the desert – an unpopulated area. There are no agricultural areas or shepherds. This is a desert, barren land. The aim of digging the trench is to stop the terrorist ISIS organization from training in this area.”

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Man) Colonel Hassan al-Silawi, Commander of the 33rd Infantry Brigade
04:00- 04:48

"The soldiers are not scared because it is their duty to fight. We are terrorizing ISIS; ISIS is scared of us. The proof is that we liberated areas with the support of the Popular Mobilizations forces. This is a border of separation in desert areas neighboring the province of Karbala. The trench goes along the administrative border of three regions – Babel, Ramadi and the province of Karbala.

"There is no transgression. There is an agreement among local governments. This [trench] serves all the provinces. The public interest comes ahead of everything, especially when it comes to security. There are no lands that belong to the state or agricultural land, either. It is a desert area."

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Man) Major Jaber Ahmed, Infantry Platoon Commander
05:12 – 05:51

“Thanks be to God, so far no security breach has been recorded in this district. Thanks be to God, it was because of the efforts of the head of operations, the commander of the 33rd Brigade."

Interviewer: "How would describe your morale?"

"Our morale is very high, thanks to [the military commanders]. God willing, the operations to liberate Falluja, which is close to us, as well as Tikrit, have started. God willing, operations will also start within Al-Anbar. God willing, the operations will keep going. We are guarding the northern district of the province of Karbala. Our morale is high, thanks be to God.”

Frame 0004
Funeral of Badr Organization Military...
Karbala
By mushtaq mohammed
13 Mar 2015

March 12, 2015
Karbala, Iraq

Thousands of Iraqi Shiites attended the funeral of Saad Tamimi, the military commander of the Badr Organization in Tikrit who was killed in battle on Wednesday 11 March. The Badr Organization is arguably the most powerful of the Shiite militias who make up the Hashid Shaabi or "Popular Mobilization" umbrella group of militias.

Also in attendance was the Badr military leader in Karbala, Major General Hamed Saheb, also known as Abu Mustapha al-Karbalai'. General Saheb accused Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Turkey of working to help the United States, referred to as "the devil", carry out its agenda in Iraq.

The mourners carried the coffin of Tamimi to holy Shiite shrines in Karbala while chanting Shiite slogans.

Analysts and U.S. officials have repeatedly stated their concerns about the sectarianism that is (re)emerging in Iraq. Defense Secretary Ash Carter said he is "very concerned" about reports that Iran and Shiite militias are leading the fight against Islamic State militants in Iraq and exacerbating sectarian strife in that nation.

In a speech to Congress on 3 March, Carter said: "Sectarianism is what brought us to the point where we are, and so I do look at it with concern. We are watching it very closely."

Transcription:

SOUNDBITE: Major General Hamed Saheb, Military Commander of Badr Organization in Karbala (Arabic, Man)
02:59 – 04:51
“I offer condolences to myself, my brothers the mujahideen, and the people of Karbala on the occasion of the martyrdom of this hero from the military wing of Badr Organization. He participated in several operations. Eight days prior to his death, he took part with me in a very difficult operation, during which he marched ahead of my mujahideen brethren, calling: “Martyrdom! Martyrdom!” The day before yesterday, he was martyred in the Salahuddin district while he tried to sweep the area after it was liberated from the criminal gangs, which had entered the land of Imam Hussein, the Commander of the Believers. I congratulate you as well as ourselves for offering an elite of [martyrs] for the sake of the Master of Martyrs [Imam] Abi Abdullah al-Hussein, in defense of the land of Iraq and the holy shrines. We say, from the city of Imam Hussein, that neither ISIS, nor the malicious House of Saud, foundling Qatar, or damned Turkey will be able to achieve this scheme in Iraq, the scheme of America, the Great Satan. This is thanks to this safety valve [POINTING TO PORTRAIT OF AYATOLLAH SISTANI] who issued such a great fatwa, and these men who obeyed the fatwa.
God willing, in the next few hours, the good news of the full liberation of Salahuddin province will be announced.
Yes, we offered martyrs and casualties but, relatively to previous operations, their numbers are small.”

Frame 0004
Norwegian Shiaa Militia Commander: "I...
Karbala
By mushtaq mohammed
20 Feb 2015

February 18, 2015
Karbala, Iraq

Norwegian Shiite Militia Commander Abass al Assadi appears in a second video, interviewed at his home in Karbala. Despite video evidence and what he claimed in is first video on Transterra Media, he now says that he did not and will not take his son to war. The Transterra contributor visited Abass at his home in Hay al-Ghadir, Karbala, where he lives with his wife and two sons Ali and Hussein. The day before the interview Abass had arrived home for a nine-day vacation, but he then received a call from his commanders with orders to head back to Samarrah with some of his fighters. Accodring to Abass his eldest son Ahmed, who travels between California and Oslo, has been arrested and questioned by the Norwegian authorities before being released. The same thing happened to his own brother who also lives in Oslo. In the previous video Abass and his youngest son Hussein appeared to be in a training camp for the al-Hashid al-Shaabi or “Popular Crowd”, Shiite militias, where the boy is seen spending time in training with the fighters and firing a weapon. The boy said that he had participated in battles against ISIS, such as in Jurf al-Sakher.

Frame 0004
Norwegian Shiaa Militia Commander: "I...
Karbala
By mushtaq mohammed
18 Feb 2015

February 18, 2015
Karbala, Iraq

Norwegian Shiite Militia Commander Abass al Assadi appears in a second video, interviewed at his home in Karbala. Despite video evidence and what he claimed in is first video on Transterra Media, he now says that he did not and will not take his son to war.

The Transterra contributor visited Abass at his home in Hay al-Ghadir, Karbala, where he lives with his wife and two sons Ali and Hussein. The day before the interview Abass had arrived home for a nine-day vacation, but he then received a call from his commanders with orders to head back to Samarrah with some of his fighters.

Accodring to Abass his eldest son Ahmed, who travels between California and Oslo, has been arrested and questioned by the Norwegian authorities before being released. The same thing happened to his own brother who also lives in Oslo.

In the previous video Abass and his youngest son Hussein appeared to be in a training camp for the al-Hashid al-Shaabi or “Popular Crowd”, Shiite militias, where the boy is seen spending time in training with the fighters and firing a weapon.
The boy said that he had participated in battles against ISIS, such as in Jurf al-Sakher.

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Boy) Hussein al-Assadi , Iraqi-Norwegian Teenage Fighter
09:17 – 12:19
Why do you not speak Norwegian?
I do not know how to.
Why?
I came to Iraq a long time ago and I cannot speak [Norwegian].
Did you not learn Norwegian at school?
I was young. When I came from Norway I was young. I had not gone to school.
How old were you?
About four years old.
Do you wish to return?
Yes.
Why? Why do you want to return?
The country there is better and safer.
What are you doing in Iraq?
I study at the hawza [Shiite religious school].
UNINTELLIGIBLE QUESTION
In Iraq there are holy shrines which I visited. My father came here to practice jihad. He went to Jarf al-Sakhr. I am proud of him for practicing jihad. I went with him after they liberated the area. I wore his military vest and went with him.
That was after the liberation?
Yes, after the liberation was over.
UNINTELLIGIBLE QUESTION
I am proud of him. I am proud of my father and his position as an Iraqi military.
Do you feel scared sometimes?
No.
Do you feel scared that ISIS is killing people in Iraq?
No. I do not feel scared.
You do not feel scared?
No.
Are you scared of getting killed?
No, I am not.
Why not?
There is nothing to worry about here.
Did you participate in any major battle?
No. I used to go with my father to [the battlefield] after the battle was over.
Do you not think that you are too young [to be part of an armed group]?
No.
I have not fought. I used to go to a certain area after the liberation was over.
Do you think that young men of your age should come from Norway and other European countries to fight against ISIS?
No.
Do you think that young men of your age should come from Norway to and other European countries to fight against ISIS?
I did not come to Iraq to fight. I came to study and be with my people and near the holy shrines.
Is there anything that you miss in Norway? Do you miss any people? Do you have certain good memories? Do you miss any friends or neighbors?
I miss them sometimes but we came to Iraq for the sake of the Imams and to study.

Frame 0004
Norwegian Shiaa Militia Commander: "I...
Karbala
By mushtaq mohammed
18 Feb 2015

February 18, 2015
Karbala, Iraq

Norwegian Shiite Militia Commander Abass al Assadi appears in a second video, interviewed at his home in Karbala. Despite video evidence and what he claimed in is first video on Transterra Media, he now says that he did not and will not take his son to war.

The Transterra contributor visited Abass at his home in Hay al-Ghadir, Karbala, where he lives with his wife and two sons Ali and Hussein. The day before the interview Abass had arrived home for a nine-day vacation, but he then received a call from his commanders with orders to head back to Samarrah with some of his fighters.

Accodring to Abass his eldest son Ahmed, who travels between California and Oslo, has been arrested and questioned by the Norwegian authorities before being released. The same thing happened to his own brother who also lives in Oslo.

In the previous video Abass and his youngest son Hussein appeared to be in a training camp for the al-Hashid al-Shaabi or “Popular Crowd”, Shiite militias, where the boy is seen spending time in training with the fighters and firing a weapon.
The boy said that he had participated in battles against ISIS, such as in Jurf al-Sakher.

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Man) Abbas al-Assadi , Iraqi-Norwegian Shiaa Militia Commander:

Abbas al-Asadi: “I will be heading to Samaraa, after this interview a car will come and pick us up and we will go there.

Interviewer: Did you just return from Samaraa for this interview?

Abbas: “No, I came to see my family but they [Army commanders] called me and told me to return. I am now in the army fighting ISIS but I need to return. They need me there. I took a few days off and went there, but now they need me, they called me and I have to return.”

Interviewer: Don't you think you are breaking the Norwegian law, or technically the law in all of Europe, by letting your children participate in war?

Abbas: “I will not break the Norwegian law or the Arabic law. My children came with me after the area was liberated, after the area became safe and the families returned to it. But my little child likes to wear my uniform and I taught him how to shoot just so he can have some experience. But he does not participate in war with me. I know he cannot participate in war, war is not for him.”

Interviewer: The last time we met with them, your children told us that they participated in war and in victories and in fighting ISIS. What is the reason for such statements?

Abbas: “He considers himself to be one with his father, and since his father participated and he entered Jurf al-Sakher after it was liberated, he considered himself as a participant. Of course he did not participate in the battles in Jurf al-Sakher, do you think I would want death for my son? It is impossible.”

Interviewer: When was the last time you went to Norway?

Abbas: “I was there last in 2008.”

Interviewer: Do you intend to return to Norway and if so, when?

Abbas: “Yes I intend to return to Norway, after the war with ISIS ends.”

Interviewer: How many are in your family?

Abbas: “Some of them are living in Oslo, and I have another son who is a doctor in America. According to our beliefs, a person who leaves jihad is an infidel. We ask God to help us and support us.”

Interviewer: Is your wife pleased with what you are doing?

Abbas: “Yes my wife is proud of me because I am fighting with the good people against the enemies.”
Interviewer: What do you want to tell the Norwegian government and the European Union who might think that you brought your son to participate in war?
Abbas: “I did not and will not involve my son in war, I repeat that, I did not and will not involve any of my youngest children in war. They go to school.. just like in anywhere else. When we liberated the area, many people and journalists came and my son was one of those people. He wanted to wear my uniform, and I allowed him to. It has nothing to do with war. We fought him the Arabic traditions, such as shooting, horseback riding, and other simple things. If a war happens in Norway, God forbid, I am willing to fight alongside them. If Norway or Europe needs me to fight, I will definitely help them. Norway is my country and Iraq is my country.”

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Boy) Hussein al-Assadi , Iraqi-Norwegian Teenage Fighter
09:17 – 12:19
Why do you not speak Norwegian?
I do not know how to.
Why?
I came to Iraq a long time ago and I cannot speak [Norwegian].
Did you not learn Norwegian at school?
I was young. When I came from Norway I was young. I had not gone to school.
How old were you?
About four years old.
Do you wish to return?
Yes.
Why? Why do you want to return?
The country there is better and safer.
What are you doing in Iraq?
I study at the hawza [Shiite religious school].
UNINTELLIGIBLE QUESTION
In Iraq there are holy shrines which I visited. My father came here to practice jihad. He went to Jarf al-Sakhr. I am proud of him for practicing jihad. I went with him after they liberated the area. I wore his military vest and went with him.
That was after the liberation?
Yes, after the liberation was over.
UNINTELLIGIBLE QUESTION
I am proud of him. I am proud of my father and his position as an Iraqi military.
Do you feel scared sometimes?
No.
Do you feel scared that ISIS is killing people in Iraq?
No. I do not feel scared.
You do not feel scared?
No.
Are you scared of getting killed?
No, I am not.
Why not?
There is nothing to worry about here.
Did you participate in any major battle?
No. I used to go with my father to [the battlefield] after the battle was over.
Do you not think that you are too young [to be part of an armed group]?
No.
I have not fought. I used to go to a certain area after the liberation was over.
Do you think that young men of your age should come from Norway and other European countries to fight against ISIS?
No.
Do you think that young men of your age should come from Norway to and other European countries to fight against ISIS?
I did not come to Iraq to fight. I came to study and be with my people and near the holy shrines.
Is there anything that you miss in Norway? Do you miss any people? Do you have certain good memories? Do you miss any friends or neighbors?
I miss them sometimes but we came to Iraq for the sake of the Imams and to study.

Frame 0004
Norwegian Father and Son Fight ISIS T...
Karbala
By mushtaq mohammed
29 Jan 2015

January 29, 2015
Karbala, Iraq

Former Iraqi army Commander Abass al-Assadi fled to Norway and became a citizen in 1991 following the popular revolution against Saddam Hussein. In 2013 he returned to Syria with his daughter and two sons, to fight with the Assad regime and “protect Shiite shrines.”His daughter was killed in an artillery strike.
After the call to jihad by the Shiite spiritual leader Ali al-Sistani in 2014, Abass returned with his family to Iraq to fight ISIS. His sons began training with the Shiite militia. The video shows one of them, 14 year-old Hussein, with his father in a training camp in western Karbala. Abass and other Iranian and Iraqi Shiite officers are teaching Iraqi volunteers urban warfare and combat drills. Hussein calls all young European Shiite Muslims to join the fight against the "Islamic State".

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Man) Abbas al-Assadi
01:58 – 03:45
I was part of the opposition against Saddam Hussein. I participated in the 1991 uprising. After that, I moved to Saudi Arabia and from there to Norway. I obtained the Norwegian citizenship, and I came here after I heard the call of the marjaeia [Ayatollah Ali Sistani] to participate in jihad and obtain material benefit… no, sorry I meant gains in the afterword. This will grant us honor in life and after death and strengthen our sense of jihad. God willing, we shall all be soldiers who serve the marjaeia and the Iraqi people.
Q: As you know, the European Union has imposed sanctions on Europeans of foreign origins who conspire with ISIS. Do you not fear that this measure will also affect the members of the Popular Crowd [Shiite militia loyal to Ayatollah Ali Sistani]?

No, the Popular Crowd has nothing to do with Europe. I am fulfilling the call of the marjaeia, which represents me. European countries would be happy that I am fighting against ISIS. If they have an agreement with ISIS, that would be something else. We came to fulfil the call of the marjaeia and exterminate ISIS members wherever they were in Iraq. I am not concerned with any sanctions.
My children and I have Iraqi citizenship and I am not ashamed of being Iraqi. I am originally Iraqi and I shall remain Iraqi.
Q: What is your name?
Abbas al-Assad; Abu Ali.
Q: Abbas, you have brought your son from Norway.
He would gain experience and learn in the future… Q: Are you not scared for his safety?
I am not scared for his, mine or my family’s safety… All of Iraq is in the same situation. I am not worried about individuals. Everybody, including my family, would be sacrificed for the sake of the Marjaia [spiritual leader] and the honorable Iraqi people.

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Boy) Hussein Abbas al-Assadi, Child soldier
03:47
Q: What is your name, dear?
Hussein Abbas.
Q: Why are you here?
I am practicing jihad.
Q: what do you think about Norway and Iraq?
They are nice, but Iraq is better.
Q: Are you not afraid of ISIS?
No.
Father: We have just come here after finishing a battle. It was fulfilment of the marjaeia’s call. I have two other children. My daughter was martyred in Syria, when ISIS bombarded the town of Nubbul.
Q (addressed to boy): Are you willing to take part in a battle?
Boy: Yes.
Q: Why?
Boy: I want to fulfill the call of the Marjaia [spiritual leader].
[Unseen man]: …and to protect the Iraqi people. Boy: and to protect the Iraqi people.
Q: Are you not scared of death?
Boy: No.
Q: You are Norwegian and had a comfortable life [in Norway], where there is a good economy and safety. You came to Iraq, where there are plenty of ISIS members. Are you not scared of this?
Boy: No. Q: Why?
Boy: I am fulfilling the call of the Marjaia [spiritual leader].
[Unseen man]: … and you have resolution. Boy: … I have courage.
Q: What would you say to your friends in Europe? How did you find the situation? Is there safety? Terrorism? Were you afraid? How did people welcome you?
(Boy smiles and remains quiet) Q: Talk to me…
Father: Tell him, my son, that we are here among our family and people, and the Iraqi people are all our family.
Q: Do not pay attention to the camera. Talk to me.
Boy: It was better that we came here to be our people. The Iraqi people are our family.
Q:Do you advise others in Europe to come and fight against ISIS?
Boy: They should fight against ISIS and defend the holy shrines and protect their people.
Q: Did you quit school?
Boy: Yes.
Q: What is your name?
Boy: Hussein Abbas Assadi.

06:08 – 06:39
Boy: I want to fulfill the call of the Marjaia [spiritual leader] and protect the holy shrines.
Q: You seem so young. Why did you come here?
Boy: I came with my father.
Q: Are you not afraid of ISIS?
Boy: No, I am not.
Q: Have you taken part in battles?
Boy: Yes, in Jaruf al-Sakhr and Fadlia and Buhairat.
Q: You went there?
Boy: Yes, I did.
Q: What do you think about the fighting?
(Boy smiles) Q: What do you say to young men of your age in Europe?
Boy: They should come to fight against ISIS.

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Man), Abu Khaled, officer in Popular Crowd
06:58 – 07:14
Today, he will head to the firing practice field to train using live ammunition. This is in preparation for a future duty, the liberation of the remaining occupied areas of Salahuddine.

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Man) Abu Jaafar, Shiite cleric
07:26 – 08:02
These young mujahidin they came to fulfill the call of the Marjaia [spiritual leader] led by ayatollah Sayyed Ali Sistani. God willing, the students of the hawza (institute for cleric formation) shall be with them on the battle fronts. We will be at the barricades before them. We will support their religious morale. We also give them religious lessons.

Frame 0004
Iraqi Army Retakes Town Near Ramadi F...
Anbar
By mushtaq mohammed
22 Dec 2014

December 21, 2014
Anbar, Iraq

The Iraqi army regained control over Al-Wafaa district, located to the west of Ramadi, nine days after ISIS controlled it. In a hours battle between ISIS the Iraqi army with the support of the popular crowd forces, Ahl al-hak brigade, and Karbala brigade.

Military personnel found houses and cars rigged with explosives as well as a workshop in which ISIS fighters set up explosive devices. ISIS suffered material and human losses as a large number of ISIS fighters were killed while others fled across the desert.

Al-Wafaa area, is a part of al-Anbar province and located 40 Km to the south of it, 550 Km to the west of Baghdad, and on the highway leading to Jordan.

It was occupied by ISIS for being a strategic location that connects al-Anbar and Karbala.

Transcription:
Ahmad El Shummari, Iraqi soldier (Man, Arabic)

(01:48-02:12) We liberated it, we did not leave any ISIS members there. We killed some of them. We took down their flags from the towers and placed the flag of al-Hussein instead.

unnamed citizen (Man, Arabic)

(03:21-03:33) The only thing that remained is their flag, we took it down and placed the Iraqi flag instead.

It was on the telecommunication tower over there.

Lieutenant Atheerr Hamza Al Jassem Al Raobaei, Commander Of The 29th Brigade In The Iraqi Army (Man, Arabic)

(03:49-04:18) It took us four hours to liberate the area from ISIS and cause them great material and human losses. We now have a new stage of operation, which is cleansing the area from land mines, so we can allow the citizens to enter this area and guarantee their safety.

(04:30- 04:39) Those brave soldiers enter dangerous areas, their motto is victory of death, and this is what our religious leader had asked us to do.

Ali Al Mayyali, Second Mayor Representative For Karbala Province, Commander For The Karbala Brigade "The Popular Crowd Forces" (Man, Arabic)

(05:05-05:35) This area is on the same line as Karbala, it takes 60-70 Km from al-Rahaleya to reach Karbala. Th surrounding villages and areas are occupied by ISIS members. So we do not allow those areas to be a passage to reach Karabala, as they plan to do. And as you have seen the bomb factory that contains thousands of bombs.

(04:41-06:11) If we look at the area from the west, from the side of al-Rutba, Aana, al-Kaem, al-Kobaisi, al-Mohamadi, and al-Heet and how they entered and took control over those areas in order to reach al-Rahaleya. The areas that i have mentioned are under ISIS control and they are being liberated by the Public crowd forces and the army. I blame the tribes, they did not participate and they did not have an influence as media outlets have mentioned.

Frame 0004
Mortars Fired at Shiite Pilgrims
Karbala
By mushtaq mohammed
12 Dec 2014

December 12, 2014
Karbala, Iraq

Approximately 20 mortars were dropped on the night of Thursday, December 11, 2014, in inhabited areas in the west neighborhoods of Karbala.
According to eye witnesses, the mortars were fired from the border of al-Hizam al-Akhdar area, using a mobile platform placed in the back of a pickup truck, and landed two kilometers from the holy shrines in the center of Karbala.
The same local source claimed that the shelling caused at least one death and 20 injuries, including children, and damaged some homes.

The attack comes as millions of Shiites from all over the world head to holy shrines in Karbala to commemorate the death of Imam Hussein ibn Ali, the Prophet Muhammad’s grandson. This is a religious tradition Shiite Muslims have been observing for over 1300 years.

Trancription:

Um Nour (Woman, Arabic):

"His brother is in the hospital, and their younger son is in the hospital. He is the only one who died. Nobody else died."

Interviewer: What happened yesterday?

"A mortar hit, it was dropped in their backyard, go check it out. It was big to the extent that our stuff fell on the ground."

Um Hussein (Woman, Arabic):

"Yesterday at 11:30pm, a missile was dropped on their house. They have five children and they are all young. The youngest is one year and a half old. They were great people, we have been their neighbors for 20 years."

Hezbollah Defiant in Ashoura Commemor...
Nabatieh
By Cherine Yazbeck
06 Nov 2014

November 7, 2014
Nabatieh, Lebanon

The Lebanese Shia Party Hezbollah staged a defiant Ashoura commemoration in its south Lebanon stronghold of Nabatieh. Despite threats from radical sunni groups like ISIS to attack Ashoura commemorations, Hezbollah members and supporters took to the streets to commemorate the death of Imam Hussein in the battle of Karbala in 680 AD. Hezbollah Secretary General Hassan Nasrallah delivered a speech praising his party's role in the Syrian conflict and declaring Hezbollah's readiness to confront any challenges.

Frame 0004
Iraqi Shia Volunteer with the Assad A...
By mushtaq mohammed
27 Oct 2014

October 27, 2014
Karbala, Iraq

Iraqi Shia volunteers sign up with the Assad Allah al-Ghaleb militia in Karbala. The fighters will be moving to the front line to join the fight against ISIS, in the province of Diala, north of Baghdad.

Transcription:

(00:37-00:58) Mohamad Jassem Zoeidi, Brigade commander (man, Arabic): "We are the leaders of (Assad Allah al-Ghaleb formation), al-Hejjah al-Montazar brigade. "We will send a regiment to the Dyala province to beat the ISIS terrorists, support our security forces, and stand in the face of any terrorist group whether it is ISIS or any other group."

(01:03-01:39) Abu Jaafar, Volunteer fighter (man, Arabic): "I advise you, you are our children and we are your family. We will help you, support you, we will not let you down and we will sacrifice ourselves for you. I advise you to respect your commanders and obey them. We are going to Dyala to help the poor families, we do not want any shameful behavior. We want to to adopt the morals of al-Hussein."

(01:43-01:49) Mahdi, Volunteer fighter (man, Arabic): "We want to avenge all the Shia and our grandfather al-Hussein, we want to avenge all the Shia."

(01:50-02:10) Kazem, Volunteer fighter (man, Arabic): "The security situation is not stable in Dyala so we all go to fight. We are willing to die and will sacrifice our souls for our Imam al-Hussein. Our message to the rest of the fighters and to the entire Iraqi population is who ever insults the religion, we will fight him and we do not care what happens."

(02:24-02:50) Abu Ali, Field Commander (man, Arabic): "Wherever we need to go to support the Iraqi army, whether in Dyala, or al-Anbar, or any other place, we will go. We are counting on our strength and personal weapons because we do not have any support, but we will be victorious."

Thumb sm
Car Bomb Kills Seven in Karbala
Karbala
By mushtaq mohammed
12 Sep 2014

September 11, 2014
Karbala, Iraq

An explosion in a parking lot at 3pm in Maytham al-Tamar Street in Karbala, caused seven deaths, ten injuries and the destruction of 50 cars. Two other explosions occurred in the exact same time in neighboring provinces, al-Hella, and al-Najaf.

Thumb sm
Car bomb kills seven in karbala
By mushtaq mohammed
11 Sep 2014

11- September- 2014
Karbala, Maytham Street
An explosion occurred at 3 in the after noon in Bayt al-Joud parking lot, causing the death of seven people, the injury of ten and the destruction of 50 cars.
two other explosion occurred in the exact same time in neighboring provinces; al-Hella, and al-Najaf.

Thumb sm
Car bomb kills seven in karbala
By mushtaq mohammed
11 Sep 2014

11- September- 2014
Karbala, Maytham Street
An explosion occurred at 3 in the after noon in Bayt al-Joud parking lot, causing the death of seven people, the injury of ten and the destruction of 50 cars.
two other explosion occurred in the exact same time in neighboring provinces; al-Hella, and al-Najaf.

Thumb sm
Car bomb kills seven in karbala
By mushtaq mohammed
11 Sep 2014

11- September- 2014
Karbala, Maytham Street
An explosion occurred at 3 in the after noon in Bayt al-Joud parking lot, causing the death of seven people, the injury of ten and the destruction of 50 cars.
two other explosion occurred in the exact same time in neighboring provinces; al-Hella, and al-Najaf.

Thumb sm
Car bomb kills seven in karbala
By mushtaq mohammed
11 Sep 2014

11- September- 2014
Karbala, Maytham Street
An explosion occurred at 3 in the after noon in Bayt al-Joud parking lot, causing the death of seven people, the injury of ten and the destruction of 50 cars.
two other explosion occurred in the exact same time in neighboring provinces; al-Hella, and al-Najaf.

Thumb sm
Car bomb kills seven in karbala
By mushtaq mohammed
11 Sep 2014

11- September- 2014
Karbala, Maytham Street
An explosion occurred at 3 in the after noon in Bayt al-Joud parking lot, causing the death of seven people, the injury of ten and the destruction of 50 cars.
two other explosion occurred in the exact same time in neighboring provinces; al-Hella, and al-Najaf.

Thumb sm
Car bomb kills seven in karbala
By mushtaq mohammed
11 Sep 2014

11- September- 2014
Karbala, Maytham Street
An explosion occurred at 3 in the after noon in Bayt al-Joud parking lot, causing the death of seven people, the injury of ten and the destruction of 50 cars.
two other explosion occurred in the exact same time in neighboring provinces; al-Hella, and al-Najaf.

Thumb sm
Families of Missing Soldiers, Rally i...
Karbala
By mushtaq mohammed
11 Sep 2014

Families of the victims killed by ISIS in the old American base COB Speicher, protest in the streets of Karbala. The crowd, of mostly women, wave pictures of their missing family members in the air, calling for the return of the bodies of those killed and the release of those who are still detained. ISIS attacked the base in May 2014, killing many of the Iraqi soldiers posted there and taking others prisoner. Since then the Kurdish Peshmerga have regained control over the area.

Thumb sm
Car bomb kills seven in karbala
By mushtaq mohammed
11 Sep 2014

11- September- 2014
Karbala, Maytham Street
An explosion occurred at 3 in the after noon in Bayt al-Joud parking lot, causing the death of seven people, the injury of ten and the destruction of 50 cars.
two other explosion occurred in the exact same time in neighboring provinces; al-Hella, and al-Najaf.

Thumb sm
Car bomb kills seven in karbala
By mushtaq mohammed
11 Sep 2014

11- September- 2014
Karbala, Maytham Street
An explosion occurred at 3 in the after noon in Bayt al-Joud parking lot, causing the death of seven people, the injury of ten and the destruction of 50 cars.
two other explosion occurred in the exact same time in neighboring provinces; al-Hella, and al-Najaf.

Thumb sm
Families of Missing Soldiers, Rally i...
By mushtaq mohammed
11 Sep 2014

September 11, 2014
Karbala, Iraq

The mother of missing soldier cries out as she holds up his photograph.

Thumb sm
Families of Missing Soldiers, Rally i...
By mushtaq mohammed
11 Sep 2014

September 11, 2014
Karbala, Iraq

Family members of the soldiers missing from the massacre at the old American army base, COB Speicher, hold up pictures of them and demand their return, whether alive or dead.

Thumb sm
Families of Missing Soldiers, Rally i...
By mushtaq mohammed
11 Sep 2014

September 11, 2014
Karbala, Iraq

Family members of the soldiers missing from the massacre at the old American army base, COB Speicher, hold up pictures of them and demand their return, whether alive or dead.

Thumb sm
Families of Missing Soldiers, Rally i...
By mushtaq mohammed
11 Sep 2014

September 11, 2014
Karbala, Iraq
Family members of the missing soldiers hold up their photos. The man in the centre is holding up a picture of Kamal Zaher Bahloul al-Jabouri, just one of the soldiers who is missing.

Thumb sm
Families of Missing Soldiers, Rally i...
By mushtaq mohammed
11 Sep 2014

September 11, 2014
Karbala, Iraq

Family members of the soldiers missing from the massacre at the old American army base, COB Speicher, hold up pictures of them and demand their return, whether alive or dead.

Thumb sm
Families of Missing Soldiers, Rally i...
By mushtaq mohammed
11 Sep 2014

September 11, 2014
Karbala, Iraq

Family members of the soldiers missing from the massacre at the old American army base, COB Speicher, hold up pictures of them and demand their return, whether alive or dead.

Thumb sm
Families of Missing Soldiers, Rally i...
By mushtaq mohammed
11 Sep 2014

September 11, 2014
Karbala, Iraq

Family members of the soldiers missing from the massacre at the old American army base, COB Speicher, hold up pictures of them and demand their return, whether alive or dead.

Thumb sm
Families of Missing Soldiers, Rally i...
By mushtaq mohammed
11 Sep 2014

September 11, 2014
Karbala, Iraq

Family members of the soldiers missing from the massacre at the old American army base, COB Speicher, hold up pictures of them and demand their return, whether alive or dead.

Thumb sm
Families of Missing Soldiers, Rally i...
By mushtaq mohammed
11 Sep 2014

September 11, 2014
Karbala, Iraq

Family members of the missing soldiers congregate in a holy shrine in Kerbala carrying a banner that reads:

'We warn you for the last time. We are the victims of the Speicher massacre we want to take revenge on the murderers from the tribes of Tikrit who contributed to the massacre. Anyone who does not give up the criminals or help release the detained, is complicit in the crime.'

Thumb sm
Families of Missing Soldiers, Rally i...
By mushtaq mohammed
11 Sep 2014

September 11, 2014
Karbala, Iraq

Jakem Abdullah's mother holds up a photo of her missing son.

Thumb sm
Families of Missing Soldiers, Rally i...
By mushtaq mohammed
11 Sep 2014

September 11, 2014
Karbala, Iraq

Family members of the soldiers missing from the massacre at the old American army base, COB Speicher, hold up pictures of them and demand their return, whether alive or dead.

Thumb sm
Car bomb kills seven in karbala
By mushtaq mohammed
10 Sep 2014

11- September- 2014
Karbala, Maytham Street
An explosion occurred at 3 in the after noon in Bayt al-Joud parking lot, causing the death of seven people, the injury of ten and the destruction of 50 cars.
two other explosion occurred in the exact same time in neighboring provinces; al-Hella, and al-Najaf.

Thumb sm
Car bomb kills seven in karbala
By mushtaq mohammed
10 Sep 2014

11- September- 2014
Karbala, Maytham Street
An explosion occurred at 3 in the after noon in Bayt al-Joud parking lot, causing the death of seven people, the injury of ten and the destruction of 50 cars.
two other explosion occurred in the exact same time in neighboring provinces; al-Hella, and al-Najaf.

Thumb sm
Car bomb kills seven in karbala
By mushtaq mohammed
10 Sep 2014

11- September- 2014
Karbala, Maytham Street
An explosion occurred at 3 in the after noon in Bayt al-Joud parking lot, causing the death of seven people, the injury of ten and the destruction of 50 cars.
two other explosion occurred in the exact same time in neighboring provinces; al-Hella, and al-Najaf.