Ahmadinejad lashes out at rival before vote

TEHRAN, Iran - Iran's hard-line president took a final shot at his rivals Wednesday during his last public pre-election rally, accusing them of resorting to a smear campaign against him similar to the one used by Adolf Hitler's propaganda minister.

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is locked in a neck-and-neck race against reformist Mir Hossein Mousavi. Both have launched intense political attacks against each other and have turned the presidential election into a display of Iran's deep political divides.

The Iranian president and Mousavi have accused each other using Hitler-like propaganda tactics in order to win on Friday. But the president's harsh allegations against his rivals, including Mousavi, during Wednesday's rally indicated that the mudslinging between the candidates was not slowing down.

'They applied the methods of (Josef) Goebbels, propaganda minister of Hitler,' Ahmadinejad told thousands of Iranian-flag waving supporters. 'They used this method of psychological war against our nation.'

US kills militant said linked to Iran's elite Quds Force

KABUL - The U.S. military on Wednesday said an airstrike in western Afghanistan killed a militant commander with reported links to Iran's elite military Quds Force. An Afghan official said fighting elsewhere killed 30 Taliban.

The airstrike Tuesday in the western province of Ghor targeted a warlord named Mullah Mustafa, whom the U.S. military said was responsible for attacks on a nearby highway. The military said 16 of Mustafa's men were also killed.

The U.S. said Mustafa commanded about 100 fighters and 'reportedly had connections to' the Iranian Revolutionary Guard's elite Quds Force, which is known to train Shiite militants from Middle Eastern countries.

Car bomb in Iraq kills about 30 people

BAGHDAD - A car bomb blew up Wednesday in a packed outdoor food market in one of the most peaceful areas of Iraq's Shiite south, killing about 30 people and wounding dozens more.

The blast raised fears that militants may be planning more strikes in remote, poorly secured areas, seeking to stretch Iraq's security services as they take on a bigger role in Baghdad and other flashpoint cities.