Tuesday, March 04, 2014

Violence slams Iraq

Nouri al-Maliki's assault on Anbar continues.  NINA notes Nouri's military bombed Ramadi today leaving 10 family members dead. While in Falluja?  Nouri's bombing of a residential neighborhood left 2 women dead and two children injured.

That was far from the only violence.

First though, Democracy Now! and Amy Goodman finally found Falluja:

 AMY GOODMAN: We turn now to Iraq. A new report by Truthout has revealed doctors, residents and NGO workers in the city of Fallujah are accusing the Iraqi government of war crimes and crimes against humanity in its ongoing attack against the city. According to one account, at least 109 civilians have been killed and 632 wounded since January, when Iraqi government forces began shelling Fallujah in its fight against militants.
For more on this, we’re joined by Dahr Jamail, staff reporter at Truthout. He’s joining us from Doha, Qatar.
Dahr, tell us what you found.

DAHR JAMAIL: By phoning in to several doctors in Fallujah—well, one of them, in fact, who is—had to flee because her home was being shelled, so she had to take her family and leave—but after speaking with all three of them, I found, you know, the really shocking numbers that you just discussed as far as the total numbers of dead and wounded. But in addition to that, they’re all claiming, from different parts of the city, that it’s really indiscriminate firing, that the military, the Iraqi military, that they all are referring to as Maliki—as in Prime Minister of Iraq Nouri al-Maliki’s military—that Maliki’s army has been shelling the city indiscriminately, that they aren’t—they aren’t seeing any official targets or anything military for them to target, that the main hospital, Fallujah General Hospital, has been shelled, that we have a situation where apparently several mosques have been shelled, and unknown numbers of civilian homes have also been shelled. And in addition to the numbers that you just spoke of, we—according to Dr. Ahmed Shami, the head of—the chief of resident doctors at Fallujah General Hospital, there’s been at least 10 children killed, 40 wounded, and in addition to that, five women killed and at least 35 wounded. And those statistics are now a few days out of date, and the shelling has continued since I wrote this report.

It'd be great to tell you that Goodman continued to focus the humanitarian crisis but she didn't.  Instead, it was, "Let's all be stupid and drop back to 2004."  In a segment that was less than 7 minutes, you learned more about what happened in Falluja in 2004 than you learned about what was happening today.   If you identify it as a humanitarian crisis, you spend most of your time on that ongoing crisis and you certainly don't cut off Dahr as soon as he mentions Obama.

Also, while it's great that Dahr's reporting on this (and we noted his report three times already at this site), one has to wonder why someone from Human Rights Watch or Dirk Adriaensens of BRussells Tribunal hasn't already been on the program since, as we've covered here, the assault has been taking place since the end of December.

Like the police, Amy Goodman always comes late, if she comes at all.

Back to today's violence,  National Iraqi News Agency reports a Mosul suicide bomber and a car bombing attacked police headquarters leaving the suicide bomber dead and 1 member of the police dead with four more injured, a south Baghdad (Latifiya area) sticky bombing killed 1 person, a battle in Kraw Village left 1 Sahwa dead and another injured, an Eraibi roadside bombing left 2 police members dead and one person injured, 1 police member was shot dead "and an intelligence officer injured" in Qayyarah (the intelligence officer has been identified as Captain Maher Jassim),  a Hit roadside bombing left 1 police member dead and three more injured, security forces announced they killed 5 suspects in Ramadi, 1 police member was shot dead in Imam Wayis, an al-Muqdadiya sticky bombing left one person injured, the Interior Ministry announced 1 suspect was killed in Um Tasah, border guards shot dead 1 person attempting to enter Iraq from Syria, 2 people were shot dead "walking in al-Karabilah area" in Anbar, a battle in Ramadi left 4 rebels dead, and an armed battle in Alsjer left 2 Iraqi soldiers dead and four injured,  All Iraq News adds a battle in western Baghdad left 3 rebels dead.

That's 36 reported dead and 17 injured.  In the first three days of this month, Iraq Body Count counts 90 violent deaths.  Before you add the 36 to that, we're not done.

Yang Yi (Xinhua) reports, "Iraqi security forces freed many hostages held by suicide bombers who stormed the city council of Samarra city in Iraq's Salahudin province earlier on Tuesday, leaving five people killed and 48 wounded, a provincial police source said."  Ghazwan Hassan, Ahmed Rasheed, Ned Parker and Angus MacSwan  (Reuters) note the rebels held the council and court house "for four hours," that 4 police officers were killed as well as 3 civilians  -- shot by Nouri's forces who "opened fire to retake the site."  Mahmud Saleh (AFP) adds that "Two bombers dressed in police uniforms shot dead a policeman and took control of the council headquarters with employees inside, a police lieutenant colonel said."

The following community sites -- plus Jake Tapper, NPR News, Antiwar.com, Black Agenda Report, Pacifica Evening News, On the Wilder Side and the ACLU  -- updated:


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    ahmed rasheed