Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr offered Sunday to pull his fighters off the streets of Basra and other cities if the government halts raids against his followers and releases prisoners held without charge.
The offer was contained in a nine-point statement issued by his headquarters in Najaf.
This in spite of the press reports (on the admittedly confusing situation) that suggest that the 'Mahdi Army holds firm as Iraqi PM risks all in battle of Basra'.
The other side is always implacable, plucky, and standing firm - our side is always risking all, or otherwise at hazard. The reality is that both sides are hurting, and the question is who can sustain hurting longer.