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Soldiers Rescue Man Blackmailed into Suicide-Bombing Mission

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, May 1, 2005 – Task Force Baghdad soldiers this morning rescued a man apparently blackmailed into a suicide-bombing mission by terrorist master Abu Musab al-Zarqawi.

The man exploded his red Kia sedan roughly 15 feet from a barrier to a coalition base in east Baghdad, Iraq. The car bomb failed to detonate properly and the vehicle caught on fire. Soldiers manning the gate reacted quickly and saved the driver, coalition officials said in a release.

An initial investigation revealed that terrorists had kidnapped the driver's family and that he was forced to carry out this suicide-bombing mission to protect his wife and children, coalition officials said.

No soldiers were injured in the attack. The driver is being treated at a military hospital and is cooperating with authorities.

"This is another case where Abu Musab al-Zarqawi has to extort men to carry out his indiscriminate slaughtering," said Army Col. Joe DiSalvo, commander of 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division. "He can't recruit volunteers. (So) he is resorting to forcing Iraqi civilians to carry out these mission by threatening harm to kidnapped family members."

Officials released no more information on the fate of the man's family.

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Related Sites:
Multinational Force Iraq
3rd Infantry Division


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