April 8 —
Key developments in the war in Iraq:
U.S. forces said it may take some time to determine whether
Saddam Hussein was killed in a bombing raid on a restaurant where he
was believed to be meeting with his sons. The site remained in Iraqi
hands, a day after a U.S. warplane dropped four bunker-buster bombs
and blasted a smoking crater 60 feet deep at the restaurant. At
least three houses were destroyed and 20 others damaged, some badly,
in the attempt to kill Saddam.
President Bush said Saddam is losing his grip on power "finger by
finger" and he may even be dead. Speaking at a joint news conference
in Northern Ireland, Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair said
the United Nations would play a vital role in Iraq's
Iraqi forces staged a counterattack, sending buses and trucks
full of fighters over the Tigris River to overrun U.S. forces
holding a strategic intersection in western Baghdad. Iraqi snipers
shot at U.S. soldiers from rooftops, wounding two, one seriously. At
least 50 Iraqi fighters were killed.
Thousands of people continued to flee Baghdad in buses, trucks,
minibuses and pickup trucks to the relative safety of the north and
The Arab satellite station Al-Jazeera reported that one of its
journalists was killed when its Baghdad office was hit by a bomb
from a U.S. plane. A cameraman was wounded.
The Palestine Hotel, home base for many journalists, was struck
by U.S. tank fire. A television cameraman for Reuters news agency
and a Spanish television cameraman were killed. At least three other
journalists were injured.
A coalition A-10 "Warthog" warplane was shot down near Baghdad in
what was believed to be the first downing of a coalition aircraft by
an Iraqi surface-to-air missile.
U.S. Marines entered the capital from the south and southeast
early Tuesday, sending a contingent to guard a nuclear plant
protected by large berms.
A new cassette tape purported to be from Osama bin Laden called
on Muslims to rise up against Arab governments that support the
attack on Iraq, and urged suicide attacks.
The U.S. 101st Airborne division attacked an eight-story building
near the Baghdad airport that had been used as a base for a small
number of Republican Guard holdouts. American forces killed two
The U.S. military is testing samples from a site in Iraq where
soldiers found metal drums containing possible chemical weapons,
defense officials said.
|A U.S. Marine of the 3rd
batallion, 4th regiment, searches an Iraqi civilian while
securing a main road leading into Baghdad in the southeast
outskirts of the Iraqi capital, Tuesday, April 8, 2003. (AP
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