7 Marines Killed in Anbar
Huge Explosion in Baghdad Leaves Dozens Dead, Wounded
Sunni Arab guerrillas killed 7 US troops on Sunday in separate incidents in al-Anbar province.
Guerrillas detonated a powerful car bomb at a checkpoint at the Green Zone in downtown Baghdad, where government offices and the US embassy are barricaded in. Early reports spoke of 13 dead and 15 injured, but the Arabic satellite television network from Lebanon, LBC, estimated the wounded at at least 45.
The US continued to drop bombs on Fallujah on Sunday, according to AP.
According to the NYT, on Sunday bombs went off in Baghdad, Samarra, and Irbil, causing a small number of civilian wounded. Ash-Sharq al-Awsat reported that the car bomb in Irbil had targeted an official of the Kurdistan Democratic Party, but missed. It wounded two persons according to AFP, but Kurdish spokesmen later denied this report of deaths.
Al-Jazeerah’s crawl is reporting that the British embassy in Basra came under mortar attack late Sunday or early Monday.
A fire at a power plant knocked out electricity to much of Iraq on Sunday, including in the capital, Baghdad.
Al-Hayat reports that the Association of Muslim Scholars and some other parties met again on Sunday to demand that elections be postponed. Among the delegates to this “foundational conference” was Adnan Pachachi, the old-time Arab nationalist figure, who continues to agitate for a delay despite having joined in the election process. Ash-Sharq al-Awsat and The Gulf Daily News say that the Iraqi Islamic Party headed by Muhsin Abdul Hamid continues to be of two minds about whether to participate in the elections or not.
Likewise it says that the deputy governor of Basra Province, Salam al-Maliki, warned of separatist “religious and liberal” parties in the Shiite south that had an agenda of “revenge” and wished to break Iraq up under the guise of a loose federalism.
In an interview in Ash-Sharqa al-Awsat, interim President Ghazi al-Yawir agained warned Iraq’s neighbors that his country’s instability could spread to theirs if they did not cease their negative interference, and did not instead intervene positively to foster Iraqi political stability. Yawir said he understood the patriotic motives of those Iraqis who wanted to postpone the elections, but that he felt they must be held on time. He also said they would be the most expensive of all time, given the money he alleged Iraq’s neighbors were pouring into the coffers of Iraq’s political parties.
He blamed that decrepit state of Iraq on the overweening ambition of Saddam Hussein, saying that “Superman only exists in the movies,” a reference to Saddam’s megalomania.
He also said he had asked the Americans not to conduct any more operations like the assault on Fallujah. (That action has deeply angered and alienated most of the Sunni Arabs in Iraq.)