Iraqi Bombing Suspect Paid $10K to Pass Checkpoints
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Aug 23, 2009 3:42 PM CDT
Maj. Gen. Qassim al-Moussawi, right, presents a videotaped confession of a Sunni man, on the screen at left, identified as the mastermind of a suicide bombing in Baghdad, Iraq.   (Karim Kadim)
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(Newser) – Attackers paid $10,000 to get a bomb-laden truck past checkpoints and next to the Iraqi Finance Ministry in last week's attacks, one of the suspected masterminds said in a confession broadcast today. Seeking to fend off widespread criticism over security lapses, the Iraqi military released what it said was the confession of a Sunni man it identified as the planner of one of the two suicide truck bombings targeting government buildings in Baghdad.

The attackers paid $10,000 to a facilitator who knew the Iraqi security forces manning the checkpoints, the suspect said, adding that the operation, which killed nearly 30 people, was ordered a month ago by a Baath Party operative in Syria in a bid "to destabilize the regime." The link to Syria and the Baathists is politically explosive. The question of what to do with Saddam-era officials in the civil service, army and police has been at the heart of the Sunni-Shiite divide in Iraq.