Monday, October 07, 2013


Violence in Iraq on Sunday gets a little bit more attention than usual since the dead includes children.  Mia De Graaf (Daily Mail) reports, "A suicide bomber killed 14 children in Iraq yesterday when he drove a truck packed with explosives into the playground of a primary school. The attack took place at around 9.30am in the village of Qabak, around 260 miles north-west of Baghdad." Al Jazeera adds the children were between the ages of six and twelve and that the school's headmaster was also killed in the attack.  Meanwhile National Iraqi News Agency reports that Anbar police evacuated all the schools in Ramadi after receiving a tip that they would be targeted with a suicide bombing.  It's not clear whether more than one school was threatened or if a threat was made without regarding which one was the target.

RT notes, "14 more were killed in a suicide attack on Shi’ite pilgrims in Baghdad." And AFP's WG Dunlop Tweets:

  • An Iraqi police belt buckle lay in the street at the site of a suicide bombing in north Baghdad.

  • Trail of blood on a sidewalk near the site of a suicide bombing in Baghdad, Iraq

  • All Iraq News notes a Kirkuk car bombing.  NINA notes a shooting attack in Kadhimiya on four pilgrims left the four injured,  a Mosul suicide bomber attacked the police leaving eight dead or wounded (NINA doesn't note the number of dead), an armed attack on an Abe Sayda orchard left a married couple running a farm injured,  a Falluja armed attack left 3 police officers injured and a fourth wounded,  and an attack on an Amiriyat al-Falluja police patrol left 2 militants dead and one police officer injuredAlsumaria notes an attack on a Ramadi police patrol which left 2 police officers dead and two more injured and 2 women and 1 child were caught in the middle of an armed battle in Tikrit.  Even more disturbing are the reports of the dumped corpses -- a hallmark of the ethnic cleansing of 2006 and 2007.  Alsumaria reports 2 corpses were discovered bound and blindfolded in western Mosul and  the corpse of a 25-year-old male was discovered in Kirkuk -- also bound and blindfolded.

    Iraq Body Count counts 100 dead Saturday and 46 dead Sunday.  There are 229 violent deaths for the month thus far.   On Sunday's All Things Considered (NPR -- link is audio and text), Arun Rath spoke with the Associated Press' Adam Schreck about the violence.

    RATH: Can you break down the spike in violence, you know, just how violent has it become in Iraq compared to the past and why?

    SCHRECK: Violence in Iraq has been on the increase really since probably the second half of last year, but things have really picked up significantly in the past few months. Last month, the United Nations mission to Iraq said 979 people were killed. The vast majority of the people were civilians. That was just one month. Now, those numbers are certainly not quite as big as what we saw at the peak of the sectarian killing in Iraq in 2006, 2007. However, they are a lot bigger than what we've seen in recent years.

    Meanwhile Iraq still needs an election law to hold parliamentary elections in a few months as it is supposed to do.  UNAMI issued the following:

    Baghdad, 6 October 2013 –Following his meeting today with Kurdistan Region of Iraq’s President Mr. Masud Barzani, the Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General for Iraq (SRSG), Mr. Nickolay Mladenov said: “I call on all parties to find as soon as possible a reasonable compromise on the draft Election law that allows all components of the Iraqi society to remain engaged.  It a crucial step towards holding parliamentary elections in the constitutionally stipulated time frame”. 
    During his visit to Erbil, the UN Envoy travelled to the Syrian refugees’ Kawirgosk Camp, and met with PUK representatives. Meetings with Kurdistan Region Government’s Prime Minister, Mr. Nechirvan Barzani, as well with Goran party representatives are scheduled later in the day.

    Again  in 2009, when a law still wasn't passed in August, 'analysts' insisted it would only be a few days maybe weeks.  No, it took much longer.  And it's October now and there's no election law. 

    I'm traveling in some vehicle
    I'm sitting in some cafe
    A defector from the petty wars
    That shell shock love away
    -- "Hejira," written by Joni Mitchell, first appears on her album of the same name

     The number of US service members the Dept of Defense states died in the Iraq War is [PDF format warning] 4488.

    The latest from Third went up earlier tonight:

    Isaiah's latest comic is done.  It will hopefully go up shortly.  Hopefully?  There are image hosting problems.  It's why Third was so late in going up.  If it's not up within an hour, I'll see if we can try something different.  The e-mail address for this site is