Sunday, September 29, 2013


Iraq was slammed with violence again today.  Pretty much every classification was targeted -- Sahwa, soldier, civilian, police, etc -- and every location.  Bombings in the KRG?  That may actually get some attention because violence is now spreading north.  For years, the KRG has been seen as 'the other Iraq.'  Iraqi Christians have often fled to the KRG for safety. Today, even the KRG didn't qualify as safe.

National Iraqi News Agency reports 2 Mansouriya car bombings left 3 people dead and another twenty injured, a Muqdadiya roadside bombing left three Iraqi soldiers injured, an armed attack in Kirkuk's Rashad district left 2 Iraqi soldiers dead and three more injured, a Sada bombing (near Baquba) left one civilian injured, a Mosul roadside bombing left military officer Haider Sami injured as well as injuring a person traveling with him in his convoy, in Baghdad security forces state they killed 1 man and injured another -- both were wearing "Afghan uniform,"  an armed attack on a Hashimiat check point (Diyala Province) left two Sahwa injured,  a Mosul bombing near a military checkpoint left 2 Iraqi soldiers dead and a third injured1 mayor was shot dead in Mosul as he left his home, in the nearby village of Geleo Khan, Mayor Dawood Yassin was also assassinated, Mayor Khalil Ibrahim was shot dead outside his home (NINA states he was the 5th mayor shot dead today in Iraq),  a Baghdad car bombing killed 2 people and left eight injured, a  Baghdad teacher was shot dead in a primary school, a Muqdadiya bombing injured three police officers, a Jawad village bombing left two police officers injured, a car bombing near a Musayyab mosque left 10 people dead and another twenty injured, a Tikrit roadside bombing left 1 police officer dead and three more injured, a Mansouriya car bombing left five members of one family injured, and there was an attack on the Asayis Headquarters in Erbil (think military intelligence) with 2 car bombs and 4 suicide bombers attempt to storm the building -- along with the 4 suicide bombers, the dead includes 6 Asayish and the injured includes forty-two Asayhish and one police officer.

Again, this attack on Erbil may actually led to outlets (US outlets) paying some attention to Iraq this week.  It is a complete surprise.  Erbil is the capital of the Kurdistan Regional Government.  Tim Arango has a report online (and in Monday's New York Times) which notes:

The attackers hit a building that houses the regional Kurdish government’s security service, and the scenes that unfolded -- terrified people fleeing black plumes of smoke, the charred and smoking husks of vehicles in the streets -- were extraordinary for a region that has largely been spared the violence that for years has plagued the rest of Iraq. 

All Iraq News says it was 6 suicide bombers (not four) and that all 6 were killed by security forces.  They get six because the 2 car bombs were actually being driven by bombers.   The outlet adds strict measures were quickly put in place.  They mean a clamp down.  They don't note it but this included shutting down the Erbil Airport.   Arango notes, "In the aftermath, Iraqi forces swept across Erbil, and Sulaimaniya, another major Kurdish city, setting up checkpoints and other security measures familiar to residents of other Iraqi cities."  UNAMI issued the following statement:

Baghdad, 29 September 2013 – In the aftermath of a series of car bomb explosions that hit the city of Erbil today and caused a number of casualties, the Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General for Iraq (SRSG), Mr. Nickolay Mladenov, said: "I am shocked and concerned by this daring attack in Erbil today. My thoughts and prayers are with the families of those killed, the Kurdistan Region Government and the Government of Iraq. For many years, the city Erbil has benefited from peace and security and I urge the regional and national authorities to work together to ensure that calm and tranquility will continue to prevail and that those responsible for the attack are brought to justice."

 Nickolay Mladenoy has been named Ban Ki-moon's permanent representative in Iraq.  Last week Mlandenoy met with Nouri.  It's among the stories we haven't had time to cover due to the violence and other things.    Within hours of the attack, NINA notes, the "so-called Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL)" issued a statement claiming they were behind the Erbil attack.

That's not all the violence.  All Iraq News reports 2 homes were blown up in Shurqat leaving 4 people dead and six injured.  And, early in the day, NINA reported a car bombing near a Musayyab mosque left 10 people dead and another twenty injured.  In an update, they reported that the attack was done by a suicide bomber in an explosive vest, that it targeted a funeral and that the death toll had risen to 15 with the number injured rising to 32. In a second update, they noted the number dead increased to 30 and the number injured to forty-three.

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:

 On this week's Law and Disorder Radio,  an hour long program that airs Monday mornings at 9:00 a.m. EST on WBAI and around the country throughout the week, hosted by attorneys Heidi Boghosian, Michael S. Smith and Michael Ratner (Center for Constitutional Rights) topics addressed include compassionate prison release for Lynne Stewart, the economy with professor Richard Wolff and their "lawyers you'll like series" features Jan Suslser.    I was not able to work into a snapshot last week Heidi Boghosian's new book Spying on Democracy: Government Surveillance, Corporate Power and Public Relations.  The goal is to do so this week.  It's a great book.  Make a point to read it.   Kat's "Kat's Korner: Jack Johnson learns what really makes a man sexy"  went up earlier today.  On music, Jody Watley's "Nightlife. Jody Watley Meets Robin Thicke." went up a few hours ago.   Isaiah's latest comic goes up after this.   The e-mail address for this site is