Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson, NPR
Lt. Col. Avanulas Smiley and his interpreter talk to Sadr City residents, March 6.
Lt. Col. Avanulas Smiley and his interpreter talk to Sadr City residents, March 6. Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson, NPR
U.S. forces push into volatile Sadr City as the Baghdad "surge" expands. U.S. forces are busy setting up a checkpoint and going on what they call a "soft knock" house-by-house search of one neighborhood.
Unlike previous U.S. forays into the mostly Shiite area, this mission is more about courtesy than combat.
The mission's leaders admit the soft approach isn't likely to net many bad guys or weapons caches. But earning the residents' trust is paramount.