Bush's failed war, no the one in Iraq
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44 Die in Attacks Aimed at Iraqi Security Forces
By KIRK SEMPLE
Published: August 2, 2006
BAGHDAD, Iraq, Aug. 1 — Attacks aimed at Iraqi soldiers and police officers killed at least 44 people on Tuesday and wounded at least 57, officials said, as American and Iraqi generals continued to shift security forces to Baghdad as part of their retooled strategy to roll back surging violence in the capital.
In the deadliest attack, a powerful improvised bomb exploded before dawn next to a bus carrying Iraqi troops from Mosul to Baghdad, Iraqi military officials reported. At least 23 soldiers were killed and 20 were wounded in the blast near the Sunni Arab bastion of Tikrit, Saddam Hussein’s hometown.
Several hours later, a suicide bomber drove a sedan packed with explosives toward a Baghdad bank where Iraqi troops were collecting their monthly pay, but the vehicle exploded before it reached its apparent target when soldiers opened fire on it, military officials said.
The attack killed at least 10 people, including civilians, and wounded at least 22, according to an official at the Interior Ministry, who requested anonymity because he was not authorized to speak with the news media.
“If you saw what I saw today, you would immediately leave here,” said Loqman Shikhan, the owner of a musical instrument store several blocks away from the bomb site.
Mr. Shikhan saw bloodied victims lying in the street and calling for help but receiving none “because people thought there might be another bomb waiting to explode,” he said in an interview. Insurgents seeking to inflict maximum carnage sometimes detonate secondary bombs after rescue crews have descended on an attack site.
President Bush and Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki announced an agreement last week to significantly strengthen the military presence in Baghdad. The plan calls for adding at least 4,000 American soldiers and 4,000 Iraqi security troops in the capital.
There are now 9,000 American troops, 8,500 Iraqi soldiers and 34,500 Iraqi police officers involved in security operations in Baghdad, according to American military officials.
The cycle of sectarian bloodshed has steadily worsened in recent months, particularly in the capital, in spite of Mr. Maliki’s original security plan, which he instituted shortly after he took office in late May.
According to statistics from the Iraqi government collated by the United Nations, an average of more than 100 civilians were killed per day in June, most in the capital.
posted by Steve @ 1:28:00 AM