The policeman, who declined to be identified because he is not authorized to speak with the news media, said the explosives-packed vehicle blew up amid grocery stalls and butcher shops on the main street just across from the town’s barricaded police headquarters.
The impact of the blast destroyed a building that housed several clinics and set at least 10 vehicles ablaze. At least seven women and four children were among the dead, and distraught residents rushed to the scene to search for loved ones, he said.
The above is from Sam Dagher's "31 Killed in Car Bomb Attack on Iraq Shiite Enclave" (New York Times, A2) on yesterday's bombing. The paper did not file from Iraq yesterday despite multiple e-mails to the public account claiming otherwise.
What the paper ran Friday was a report filed from Tokyo, not Iraq. (It was a bad report which contained errors. Instead of calling it out, we just overlooked it because it was not an Iraq report and the topic had already been covered in Thursday's Iraq snapshot.)
In other news, Jim Michaels (USA Today) reports today (online, USA Today's next print edition comes out Monday) that Gen David Petraeus, eager to assume control of CENTCOM and no longer be the 'top [US] commander' in Iraq, managee to send off "a farewell letter issued Saturday".
Among today's violence includes a bombing. BBC reports: "A roadside bomb killed six Kurdish peshmerga fighters in Khanaqin town in Diyala province, north-east of Baghdad." Earlier this week, tensions escalated with counter-claims -- the central government in Baghdad claimed they weren't targeting the Peshmerga and Kurdish officials expressed concerns otherwise. The roadside bombing (likely planted by resistance fighters) will only inflame speculation in the Kurdish region where the belief is already that the Peshmerga are under attack.
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