Saturday, April 23, 2011

2 more US troops die in Iraq

CNN notes the US military has announced today that 2 US soldiers died in southern Iraq yesterday. Aren't you glad that Barack Obama ended the Iraq War and brought all the US troops home fulfilling his tent barnstorming of 2008, "We want to end the war! And we want to end it now!" The footage of that used in his campaign commercials could make you laugh today if you weren't so busy crying. Staying on violence, Mohammed Tawfeeq (CNN) reports, "Three Iraqi government officials were assassinated by gunmen using pistols equipped with silencers in separate neighborhoods in the capital Saturday, officials with the Interior Ministry said." In addition, Reuters notes a Kirkuk bombing killed 1 Iraqi soldier and left his wife and their child, 1 corpse was discovered in Kirkuk, a Baghdad sti bombing left two people injured, a, dropping back to Friday for the rest, 1 government officials was shot dead in Baghdad with another and Lt Col Ahmed Fadhel of the Ministry of the Interior Ministry was injured in a third shooting which claimed the life of his driver.

Still on violence, Richard S. Serrano (Los Angeles Times) reports that the case against Blackwater for the Baghdad shooting massacre is back on as a result of a decision by the US Court Of Appeals. For an audio report, refer to Carrie Johnson (NPR's All Things Considered).

Throughout the Iraq War, Iraqi Christians have been under assault. In October of last year, another wave of attacks was launched sending even more Iraqis out of the country while a large number who remained relocated to northern Iraq (which is thought to be somewhat safer for Iraqi Christians. Sunday is a religious holiday for Christians around the world so you may puzzle over the fact that only Jane Arraf is using the occasion to check in on the status of Christians in Iraq. But she is the only one. From her article for McClatchy Newspapers and the Christian Science Monitor:

Iraqi Christians marked a restrained Easter weekend as fear of attacks kept many from openly celebrating their most sacred day of the year and church officials urged them not to give up on the country.
At Our Lady of Salvation, where gunmen and suicide bombers killed 52 worshippers and guards last October, the church was tightly locked, guarded by Iraqi police who said the doors would be opened only moments before the Saturday evening mass.
"It's more like a museum than a church," said one of the police officers. He said they tried to keep out those who were simply curious or, he implied, there to gather intelligence.
Only the arch and cross on the church roof were visible behind 10-foot high concrete walls like others that have turned most churches in Baghdad into miniature fortresses.
"Our churches have become like prisons," says Monsignor Pious Casha, who arrived at Our Lady of Salvation during the siege moments after Iraqi special forces stormed the church.

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thomas friedman is a great man

oh boy it never ends