Thursday, November 02, 2006
WAR NEWS FOR THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 02, 2006
Gunmen killed the Shiite dean of
A roadside bomb in a market killed a man and wounded 22 others in the eastern New Baghdad district of the capital.
Gunmen attacked a police patrol and killed three policemen and wounded another in central
Gunmen kidnapped a police colonel, Khalid Ibrahim, on Wednesday in al-Selekh district in northern
Gunmen abducted a top Iraqi basketball official and a blind athletic coach, both Sunnis, on Wednesday, a day after
A roadside bomb exploded on
The bodies of two men who had been bound and blindfolded before being shot execution style were found dumped in an eastern suburb of the capital.
A roadside bomb killed two people and injured 25 others near a market in
A car bomb killed seven people and wounded 45 others as it ripped through a crowded market in
Bring ‘em on: The U.S. military has announced the death of the first soldier killed in November. The
Explosions continued to rock the central district of Baghdad near the defence and interior ministries and the Green Zone, the heavily fortified home of the embattled Iraqi government and the US embassy.
Gunmen attacked a police patrol killing two policemen and wounding two others in the religiously mixed city of
Gunmen set up a fake security checkpoint and killed the drivers of two fuel trucks and kidnapped three other people near Baquba.
Insurgents murdered 12 people, including three police, in separate attacks in and around the strife-torn town of
Two policemen and a civilian were killed in Diyala province.
Gunmen killed a guard of the Northern Oil Company in
A sniper wounded a policeman near the police headquarters in
Gunmen murdered Amal Ahmed, a pharmacist and former army officer, as she headed to her shop, one of series of attacks on female professionals by suspected Islamists.
Sarkot Hikmat Shawkat, a policeman from the city’s Oil Protection Police was cut down in a drive-by shooting.
A car bomb in a market killed a man and wounded four others in the town of
The bodies of four people were found blindfolded in Mahmudiya.
A mortar round hit a house killing two people and wounding seven others in the northern city of
Four suspected insurgents were killed and ten arrested in an Iraqi army raid near Tal Afar.
Gunmen killed five people in two fuel trucks after they set up a fake checkpoint in Udhaim, 60 km north of Baquba.
Police found the bodies of three people with their hands tied in the town of
Statistics I: Four were teenagers. Thirty were 21 or younger. The oldest was 53. They left homes in big cities and small prairie towns and Southern hamlets to answer the call of duty in Iraq, where 103 soldiers, Marines, airmen and seamen died in October — the war's fourth-deadliest month and the worst since January 2005.
Statistics II: A total of 105 American service members died in
Statistics III: At least 119 Iraqi policemen were killed in shootings, abductions and bomb attacks last month, the Interior Ministry said Thursday, underscoring the toll
An Iraqi Interior Ministry official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he wasn't authorized to talk to the media, said 185 police were reported injured in October — pointing to an extremely low survival rate among members of the force, who lack the armored vehicles, body armor, and fortified bases of the U.S. troops in the country. In contrast, there is a much higher proportion of injured to slain American soldiers, with 33,838 wounded and 2,817 killed since the war began.
The Iraqi police death toll for October follows an announcement by the top
Altogether, more than 1,000 Iraqis died from violence in October, the highest level since The Associated Press began tracking civilian deaths in April 2005. That count most likely underestimates the true figure because many deaths go unreported. The United Nations puts the monthly death toll at more than 3,000.
As American and British political leaders argue over responsibility for the crisis in
Well-armed Sunni tribes now largely surround
The Sunni insurgents seem to be following a plan to control all the approaches to
Dusty truck-stop and market towns such as Mahmoudiyah, Balad and Baquba all lie on important roads out of
In some isolated neighbourhoods in
Militia clashes: The intensifying battle between
The militias have become the largest security threat to a country already rocked by more than three years of attacks by Sunni Arab insurgents on
Despite repeated vows to crush the militias, Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki has resisted
The Mahdi Army and Badr Brigades have repeatedly clashed since the 2003 overthrow of Saddam Hussein, most recently in the southern city of
The militias also have a long history of suspicion and mistrust in the Shiite holy city of
Terror burros: Iraqi security forces patrolling near the Iranian border found six donkeys carrying dozens of high-explosive anti-tank mines, the
The military said two men fled the scene in the religiously-mixed Diyala province where the insurgency is active.
It was not clear from the statement where the donkeys, a common form of transport in the region, had come from.
Kidnapping update: The U.S. military confirmed Thursday that a kidnapped soldier was an Iraq-American man who was married to an Iraqi woman.
Maj. Gen. William B. Caldwell identified him as Ahmed Qusai al-Taayie, a 41-year-old reserve soldier.
The military spokesman said there was "an ongoing dialogue" in a bid to win the soldier's release, but he would not say with whom or at what level.
Al-Taayie was visiting his Iraqi wife when he was handcuffed and taken away by gunmen during a visit to the woman's family,
Dead children: Staff at the
It got worse when they heard he was shot by an American.
The child was flown to
Half a dozen doctors and nurses quickly unwrapped the naked body, feet already waxy and yellowing. They tore off field bandages to show an elbow reduced to pulp, a head wound that went through to the brain and several other injuries nurses said could be bullet wounds or shrapnel from a bomb.
A nurse pumped the boy's chest, trying to resuscitate him even though others told him there was no pulse and no bleeding from the wounds. "He doesn't have any vital signs," said one.
At 9.46 p.m. (1846 GMT) the boy was pronounced dead, though doctors said he had been dead on arrival, and probably already on departure from the spot where he was hit.
Cluster bombs: Civilians, a quarter of them children, make up almost all the victims of cluster bombs over the last three decades, a humanitarian agency said on Thursday.
In a study of 24 countries and regions, Handicap International said the controversial weapons, which scatter munitions over a wide area, had killed, wounded or maimed 11,044 people of whom 98 percent were civilians.
The under-reporting of victims in such places as
Some 27 percent of the victims were children, mainly boys, who were working or playing in areas where munitions were lying around after failing to explode on impact.
Security And Reconstruction
One Talabani is three years: Iraqi President Jalal Talabani said on Thursday that
At the start of a week-long visit to
However, he said that "international terrorists" were still concentrating all their efforts in
"We need time. Not 20 years, but time. I personally can say that two to three years will be enough to build up our forces and say to our American friends 'Bye bye with thanks'," Talabani told a conference.
Provincial reconstruction teams - another fiasco: Deteriorating security in Iraq and bureaucratic wrangling between the State Department and the Pentagon have undermined the US government's effort to train provincial governments, according to a report to Congress released yesterday by the special inspector general for Iraq reconstruction.
The training, done by "provincial reconstruction teams" of soldiers, aid workers, and diplomats, is meant to coach local authorities in
The teams were considered such a critical part of the Bush administration's strategy to build up the new Iraqi government that Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice presided over the inauguration of the first team in
But disagreements over which branch of the
Now, a year later, only four provinces out of 13 examined by the special inspector general's office had US personnel that were "generally able" to carry out their missions, according to a detailed audit on the teams released by the inspector general on Sunday. Teams helping nine other provincial governments reported varying degrees of success, from "somewhat able" to "generally unable" to fulfill their missions.
Reconstruction costs: War-ravaged
"Until the oil sector picks up ... we will need this much for the infrastructure and for investment expenses," Ali al-Dabbagh told reporters at a preparatory meeting for the International Compact for Iraq, a five-year plan to ensure Iraq's government has funds to survive and enact key political and economic reforms.
Al-Dabbagh called the $100 billion an "unofficial figure," and said he hoped more countries, especially Arab states, would participate in the program.
The End Of The Siege Of
Maliki says jump:
…At midday Tuesday, al-Maliki issued an order setting a 5 p.m. deadline for removal of the
Joe at Americablog’s take: Yesterday, the Iraqi government, in an unprecedented power play, shoved aside US troops who are looking for a missing soldier. Bush, who is apparently powerless to do anything positive or proactive in
105 troops were killed in October; the US Central Command thinks
digby: How very convenient for the administration that the press is concentrating on irrelevancies when a story like this breaks, eh?
The Maliki government is playing Bush for the cowardly loser he is, apparently threatening him with more bad headlines, so the Americans backed off and left a soldier behind.
But look no further, citizens. John Kerry blew a punchline and that requires a full-on media frenzy. Nothing is more fun and exciting to the kewl kidz than going after a simple meaningless anti-Democrat story that pleases the GOP establishment. Everybody wins. Except the American people, of course. Or that abandoned soldier in
Contractors Cut And Run
Too hot for mercs: Manhattan security company Kroll has withdrawn its bodyguard teams from Iraq and Afghanistan after it lost four workers in Iraq, its parent company said Wednesday. Michael Cherkasky, president and chief executive of Kroll owner Marsh & McLennan Cos., told The Associated Press that the business in the two countries wasn't worth risking the lives of their employees.
As Josh Marshall pointed out, when
But they’re taking their $2.3 billion with them: Bechtel Corp. went to
Now Bechtel is leaving.
Bechtel's contracts were part of an enormous
But Bechtel -- which charged into
I wonder how many people will die because of this: On Wednesday, a fight broke out between Sunni politicians in parliament, where Speaker Mahmoud al-Mashhadani accused other Sunni lawmakers of corruption and of stalling ratification of a religious edict intended to end sectarian clashes.
Al-Mashhadani was holding a news conference to condemn lawmakers for failing to show up for a vote when he suddenly shouted at a rival lawmaker in the audience, Abdel-Karim al-Samarie, a member of the main Sunni parliamentary bloc, the Iraqi Accordance Front.
"You did not attend (parliament) because of your corrupt political affiliation," al-Mashhadani screamed, adding: "You are dishonest and a dog" — a deep insult in
Al-Samarie responded by calling al-Mashhadani a false patriot. The speaker, who belongs to a rival Sunni group — The National Dialogue Council — lunged at al-Samarie and tried to punch him, but was held back by bodyguards.
The winning team: President Bush said Wednesday he wants Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and Vice President Dick Cheney to remain in his administration until the end of his presidency, extending a job guarantee to two of the most-criticized members of his team.
And Bush said he did not foresee a change in the immediate future in the number of
Boo fucking hoo: Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez, who served a tumultuous year as commander of all
An Honorable American
What a sad loss: The true stories of how American troops, killed in
Vote!: A substantial majority of Americans expect Democrats to reduce or end American military involvement in Iraq if they win control of Congress next Tuesday and say Republicans will maintain or increase troop levels to try to win the war if they hold on to power on Capitol Hill, according to the final New York Times/CBS News poll before the midterm election.
The poll showed that 29 percent of Americans approve of the way President Bush is managing the war, matching the lowest mark of his presidency. Nearly 70 percent said Mr. Bush did not have a plan to end the war, and 80 percent said Mr. Bush’s latest effort to rally public support for the conflict amounted to a change in language but not policy.
The poll underlined the extent to which the war has framed the midterm elections. Americans cited
Lt. Gen. (Ret.) William Odom: The United States upset the regional balance in the Middle East when it invaded
But reality can no longer be avoided. It is beyond U.S. power to prevent bloody sectarian violence in Iraq, the growing influence of Iran throughout the region, the probable spread of Sunni-Shiite strife to neighboring Arab states, the eventual rise to power of the anti-American cleric Muqtada Sadr or some other anti-American leader in Baghdad, and the spread of instability beyond Iraq. All of these things and more became unavoidable the day that
Robert Scheer: Every time I hear President Bush railing against those who would “cut and run” in Iraq instead of pursuing “victory,” as he does almost daily, I think back to similar claims being made for the Vietnam debacle when I reported from Saigon in the mid-’60s. Back then, the
Then, as now, calls for setting a timetable for an orderly withdrawal were rejected as emboldening our enemy to attack
Those predictions, however, proved dead wrong. Communism did not advance as a worldwide force after our defeat in
So why accept the president’s shrill insistence that a
LA Times Editorial: The Republican message reeks of desperation; the party seems spent. That's the nature of the political cycle in Washington — parties eventually overreach after governing uncontested for a time, as their loyalists' desire to stay in power outlasts their enthusiasm for their own ideas. The only reason this election is a cliffhanger is the lack of inspired thinking by Democratic opposition leaders.
President Bush, meanwhile, is also getting into the fear-mongering. "The Democrat approach," he said this week on the stump in
New York Times Editorial: As President Bush throws himself into the final days of a particularly nasty campaign season, he’s settled into a familiar pattern of ugly behavior. Since he can’t defend the real world created by his policies and his decisions, Mr. Bush is inventing a fantasy world in which to campaign on phony issues against fake enemies.
In Mr. Bush’s world,
In Mr. Bush’s world, there are only two kinds of Americans: those who are against terrorism, and those who somehow are all right with it. Some Americans want to win in
Mr. Bush has been pushing these divisive themes all over the nation, offering up the ludicrous notion the other day that if Democrats manage to control even one house of
Glenn Greenwald: This is what the ideal world of the Bush follower looks like: If the Government is waging a war and things are going horribly, the Government has the right to lie to its citizens and claim that things are going remarkably well. If a newspaper is furnished with documents prepared by the military that shows that the Government is lying and that things are actually going very poorly, the newspaper should then be barred from informing their readers about that truth -- and ought to criminally prosecuted, perhaps even executed, if they do so.
It truly takes an authoritarian mind of the most irredeemable proportions to watch our political leaders have their lies exposed about a war and have as their first reaction the desire that those who exposed the lies be prosecuted and imprisoned. But it isn't just Bush followers here who are demanding that, but the Bush administration itself, through the military, that is threatening to do so.
This development ought to receive a lot more attention. Now that it is revealed that even our own military believes that
An Ohio Marine was shot in the head while on patrol with his unit in