The Sunni areas groan under the hands of murderers and criminals who are neither Sunnis nor Iraqis. They are intruders in Iraq from among Al-Qaeda groupings and Ba'ath [Party] henchmen. They are the ghosts of death... They claim that Islam is a message of killing, while Islam is a message of peace. They claim that the principles [of Islam] encourage killing, while the only principles that encourage killing are the principles of the Ba'ath [Party] and of the heathens from Al-Qaeda groupings.
We will be building Iraq. We will be building Iraq despite all that has happened. May God help us.
RFI, 8 Feb 2005
I note that no one is willing to mention the reason for his targetting (the latest one being at least the fourth time - by my reckoning) - not even the good people at RFI or ITM. Although the RFI interviewer did allude to Mithal's attitudes towards Israel:
RFI: You have been the target of repeated assassination attempts. Do you believe the reason is your opinions and political attitudes, or is there another factor that has made you such a target?
Al-Alusi: They do not exclude anyone [from violence]. They target a [normal] citizen on the way to do shopping in the market; they target hospitals and schools; they target everyone. On the fact that I have been targeted personally, I have kept saying, "There is no way for Iraq but the way of peace," and, "There is no way for Iraq but the way of dialogue and institutions," and, "Nothing should exist in Iraq except according to the will of the Iraqi people." As for the advocates of religious intolerance willing to kill the [Iraqi] identity, or those who now imagine they might establish a [new] state in Iraq, be it religious or non-religious, I tell them, "Brothers, verily you have made a grave mistake." I tell them, "There can be no state in Iraq except for one founded on institutions and law." Mithal al-Alusi says from his unshaken positions, "I was calling for peace, and I will continue to call for peace -- even [for peace] with Israel." And may all the world hear that there will be no war if the Palestinians, Syrians, Egyptians, and Jordanians do not want war. I am not prepared to allow Iraqis to be turned into kindling for the flames of terrorists and ghosts of death.