Monday, February 19, 2007

Violence Continues To Rage In Iraq Despite "Operation Imposing Law"

Here's the "brilliant success" that is the preznut's troops surge plan - otherwise known as "Operation Imposing Law":

BAGHDAD, Iraq (AP) -- The U.S. military has said two U.S. soldiers were killed and 17 were wounded in a coordinated attack on a base north of Baghdad.

A string of bombings killed at least 15 people Monday in the Baghdad area, a day after a massive car bomb attack in a Shiite area market delivered the first major blow to the U.S.-led security crackdown.

Attacks in other parts of Iraq pushed the overall death toll near 30.

U.S. forces also reportedly came under attack. They clashed with insurgents north of Baghdad after a suicide bomber apparently tried to break through barriers around a joint U.S.-Iraqi base, area residents told The Associated Press. U.S. military officials said they were looking into the incident.

In Baghdad, five people were killed when a suicide attacker detonated a bomb-rigged belt on a public bus headed for the mostly Shiite area of Karradah in central Baghdad, police reported.

A roadside bomb killed three policemen in the Shiite area of Zafraniyah in southeastern Baghdad, officials said. Only 100 yards away, a bomb hidden in an open-air market exploded, killing at least five.

In Mahmoudiya, 20 miles south of the capital, a car bomb went off among auto repair shops, killing two and wounding two, police said. Mahmoudiya is mostly Shiite with Sunnis living in villages around the community and has long been a flashpoint for sectarian violence.

Elsewhere in Iraq, a car bomb in Ramadi, about 90 miles west of Baghdad, killed at least nine bystanders congregated at a police checkpoint in the aftermath of a failed suicide attack.

And in Duluiyah, a Sunni area about 45 miles north of Baghdad, at least four were killed when a bomb-rigged car exploded.

Meanwhile, the U.S. military announced Monday that a U.S. Marine was killed two days earlier during combat operations in Anbar province, a Sunni insurgent hotspot west of the capital.

The latest attacks were a sobering reminder of the huge challenges confronting any effort to rattle the well-armed and well-hidden insurgents.

On Sunday, police said at least 62 people died in the attack in the mostly Shiite area of New Baghdad. Nearly 130 people were injured.

Another person was killed in a car bombing Sunday in the Shiite militia stronghold of Sadr City.

Just a few hours before the weekend blasts, Lt. Gen. Abboud Qanbar led reporters on a tour of the neighborhood near the marketplace and promised to ''chase the terrorists out of Baghdad.'' On Saturday, the Iraqi spokesman for the plan, Brig. Gen. Qassim Moussawi, said violence had plummeted 80 percent in the capital.

Sounds like a brilliant success to me.

It's too early to say the surge is a failure, since many of the American troops aren't in place yet and the Iraqis have only sent 55%-60% of the troops they're supposed to be bringing into Baghdad for the crackdown. But it surely was too early to declare the plan a "brilliant success" too (Prime Minister Maliki claimed the plan was just that after a few days of low levels of violence and discord) and as we can see from the past 48 hours in Iraq, violence can plummet 80% for a few days and still explode with horrific intensity and frequency right after a relative lull. And today Maliki claimed the car bomb attacks and other violence of the past 48 hours is more proof that the security crackdown is a "brilliant success":

Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki condemned the bombing as a desperate act by ''terrorists'' and ''criminals'' who sense they are being squeezed.

''These crimes confirm the defeat of these perpetrators and their failure in confronting our armed forces, which are determined to cleanse the dens of terrorism,'' al-Maliki said in a statement.

So when there's low levels of violence in Baghdad for a few days, the preznut's surge plan is a "brilliant success," and when there's a horrific outbreak in violence that kills scores, the preznut's surge plan is also a "brilliant success."

Sounds like Maliki is reading from the Bushie/Cheney/Rummy/Rice book of deluded political statements - no matter what happens in Iraq, it always means we're winning and the "deadenders" are losing.

What a joke - a deadly, bloody joke. A few more days of this and maybe the American news media will stop talking about how the preznut and the GOP are putting the Dems on the defensive by forcing them to vote on the funding for the troop surge and start saying "Why should anybody fund a 21,500 troop surge that clearly hasn't worked."

Reminds me of Cheney's "last throes" comment. The idea that the violence was surging becuase the last throes are often violent.

Yeah, they are desperate. I think they have been desperate for about 3 years now.
That's exactly what it reminded me of too, pt. The U.S. military had been more circumspect about the reduction in violence because I think they knew there would be a resurgence despite the preznut's troop surge. And lo and behold, the last three days have been bloody, bloody, bloody both in and out of Baghdad.
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