Fresh Wave of Violence in Iraq
5 US troops Killed
The relentless guerrilla war continued apace in Iraq on Sunday. AFP reported that guerrillas killed two Marines in clashes on Sunday. Also, in Anbar province, guerrillas killed three US servicemen on Sunday, and two had died there on Friday. A bomb exploded on the road to the airport. Al-Zaman says that the US campaign in Babil province faces difficulties. This is a broad area in which a million persons live, and had been a prime recruiting ground for Saddam’s Republican Guards. At least a hundred very wealthy families are supporting the guerrilla war there.
The interim Iraqi National Council added its voice on Sunday to the chorus demanding that elections be held on January 30. One of four deputy speakers, Jawad Maliki, a Shiite activist, said that the Temporary Administrative Law does not allow any space for postponing the elections, and it must govern the process. He also said that recent security developments were a reason for optimism. (-al-Hayat). The unrealistic hopes that the Shiite parties are placing in operations like Fallujah and Babil shines through in his words, which took me aback. I had listened to angry Sunni Iraqis calling into al-Jazeerah all afternoon to complain bitterly about “our brethren, the Shiites” and about the American military actions in the Sunni Arab areas.
For those who weren’t reading the site over the weekend, I laid out the reasons for which commentators like Charles Krauthammer are wrong, and the elections are heading for a potential train wreck if the Sunni Arabs boycott them. (Click on the link or just scroll down).