Another feign? We'll see.
BAGHDAD, Iraq - Muqtada al Sadr, the firebrand Shiite Muslim cleric whose Mahdi Army is arguably Iraq's most powerful armed group, has ordered his followers to put down their weapons temporarily, three of his aides told McClatchy Newspapers on Friday.
Analysts differed on the significance of the directive, which Sadr delivered in secret to his commanders two weeks ago in the southern city of Kufa. Some saw it as Sadr's way of distancing himself from rising sectarian violence, most of which has been blamed on his followers.