Monday, January 17, 2005

War News for Monday, January 17, 2005 Bring ‘em on: Eight ING soldiers killed in checkpoint attack near Baquba. Bring ‘em on: Three Iraqis killed in car bomb ambush of US patrol in Ramadi. Bring ‘em on: Seven Iraqi policemen killed, 15 wounded in car bombing in Beiji. Bring ‘em on: Five Iraqis killed in fighting with US troops in Mosul. Bring ‘em on: Insurgents execute Egyptian truck driver in Ramadi. Bring ‘em on: Shi’ite election candidate survives assassination attempt in Baghdad. Bring ‘em on: One driver missing after insurgents attack convoy near Baquba. Bring ‘em on: One Iraqi MOI soldier wounded by mine near Samarra. CJTF-7 reports one US soldier killed in vehicle accident near Baghdad. Fuel and power shortage protests reported in Baghdad. Kuwait increases security at oil facilities. Baghdad. “Electricity in Baghdad is more spotty than when I was last here in June, when demand was at its summer peak. Now, the lights go out for most of the evening hours, and people without money for generators shiver in the darkness. Gas lines stretch for miles, because the electricity cuts affect the operation of refineries. I've heard no adequate explanation yet for why Baghdad's electricity situation has gotten worse. Communications, too, are difficult. Baghdad's cell phone network works only a few hours a day. (The contract arranged by U.S. authorities has developed into a major scandal.)” Rummy’s Army. “Oregon Army National Guard soldiers who served in Iraq are leaving the military at a significantly higher rate than normal, according to The Oregonian. The Portland newspaper said preliminary figures show that fewer than half — 180 to 190 — of the Iraq veterans in the Oregon Guard's 1st Battalion, 162nd Infantry, decided to re-enlist after returning in April. Retention rates typically hover around 80 percent.” Rummy’s Army, Part Deux. “Outside observers agree. ‘The Army's wheels are going to come off in the next 24 months,’ Barry McCaffrey, a retired four-star Army general, said last week. ‘The data are now beginning to come in to support that.’ McCaffrey said the service needs to add 80,000 troops to ease the strain brought on by the Iraq war. ‘We are in a period of considerable strategic peril,’ he said. ‘And it's because Rumsfeld has dug in his heels and said, 'I cannot retreat from my position.'”’ Thanks to alert reader Navy Wife for the link. KBR. “He had dodged roadside bombs, mortar fire, rocket-propelled grenades and bullets as he drove his unarmored flatbed between U.S. military bases in Iraq. He had lived that unnerving fear of being kidnapped by men in black hoods. And he was earning no more than he made driving a truck in the United States, with an extra run to Mississippi thrown in. So four months into a one-year contract, Petty came home to his family in Burnet, population 4,735. He was a broken man, said his wife, Sylvia Petty, profoundly different from the person who had left Texas in May hoping to return free of debt.” Note to Readers Sorry for the short update today. Go read River’s latest post at Baghdad Burning or Juan Cole’s news analysis at Informed Comment. Thanks, YD


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