The sniper of Baghdad

BAGHDAD, Jan 5, 2008 (AFP) – Through the sights of a high-powered rifle the silhouette of a soldier takes shape in the window of a concrete watchtower. A shot rings out and the body collapses like a puppet, falling from view. Juba has struck again. A new video of the mysterious marksman of the Islamic Army in Iraq, one of the country’s main Sunni insurgent groups, has been available on the Internet since the end of December.

The video, a copy of which was sent to AFP by the rebel group, apparently shows US soldiers being cut down by the sniper. The commentary says it aims to tell “the truth to the American people” about their military losses in Iraq.

“The American administration still tells lies to its people and doesn’t show the real numbers of their sons killed in Iraq. We are keen to tell these poor people the truth and hope it will wake them up,” declares the “commander of the sniper brigade” of the Islamic Army in Iraq, a keffiyeh on his head and his face blurred electronically.

Juba — a nom de guerre — first made an appearance on the Internet in 2005 in a poor quality film which showed shocking images of American soldiers being shot by insurgent sniper fire.

The second compilation of his “exploits,” released in October 20