Sunday, February 24, 2013


Through Saturday, Iraq Body Count counts 293 violent deaths so far this month -- and there are a few days left.  Today saw multiple acts of violence. NINA notes that a Mosul bombing claimed the life of 1 police officer, Hamza Mohammed was shot dead in Baghdad, a Ramadi explosiong claimed the life of 1 shepherd and left another injured, a Ramadi home bombing left the wife of a military officer dead and her son and brother-in-law injured, a Mosul roadside bombing left two pepole injured and 1 man was shot dead in Mosul and his mother left injured. Alsumaria notes that 1 taxi driver was shot dead in Mosul, and 1 corpse was disocvered on the banks of the Tigris.  And Alsumaria reports the son of an official in Wasit Province was kidnapped today as he left school.

The uptick in violence is a boost for Nouri al-Maliki.  Without it, there would be more attention to his multitude of failures in governance.  Yesterday, Nouri insisted that others were using sectarianism and he insisted that he would ask the judiciary to condemn anyone speaking in sectarian terms.  Kitabat reports that Anbar Province's Sheikh Ahmed Abu Risha has responded that the person resorting to sectarian talk is Nouri al-Maliki himself.  Life would be so much easier for Nouri if everyone would just decide to ignore the truth and take every lie that falls from Nouri's mouth instead as gospel.

Nouri's struggles and ineffective governmship is all the more surprising when you grasp that he's months away from seven years as prime minister -- seven years with nothing to show for it. 

Al Mada reports that Nouri's Tigris Operations Command continues to bully protesters in Anbar Province and quotes Anbar Province spokesperson Said Lafi stating that that the government's reponse is not to listen to the protesters but to attack them.  He decried the many arrests going on throughout Ramadi.  Alsumaria notes that Speaker of Parliament Osama al-Nujaifi met with the UN Special Envoy to Iraq Martin Kobler today to discuss the crack down on the protesters and the harassment.  All Iraq News covers the meet-up here.

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.

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