3 GIs, 4 British Killed
Guerrillas Slay over 100
al-Maliki shuffles Cabinet
The Democratic Congress will pass a resolution in January asking that troops start coming home by mid-2007 in a phased withdrawal.
Three US troops were announced killed in Iraq on Sunday, some dying of wounds incurred earlier.
Shiite guerrillas, most likely, used an improvised explosive device (IED) placed along the Shatt al-Arab waterway to attack a British ship patrolling those waters. They killed 4 and seriously wounded 3. The attack was especially poignant, coming on Remembrance Day, as the UK public memorialized their war dead.
AP reports well over 100 deaths in Iraq on Sunday from political violence. The worst single incident came when two suicide bombers detonated their bomb belts in the midst of a crowd of police recruits, killing 35 and wounding dozens. Another 25 bodies were found in Baghdad, victims of the sectarian civil war. In Baquba, some 40 bodies that had accumulated at the morgue in recent weeks were buried. Inhabitants in Baquba reported that a large number of bodies, up to 50, were strewn behind an electricity plant, but police could only find 5. Well, I shouldn’t say only. I think the two distinct reports got conflated somehow.
AP says of the big bombing:
‘ n Sunday morning’s bombing targeting police recruits, two men detonated explosives strapped to their bodies simultaneously, police Lt. Maitham Abdul-Razaq said. The attack, killing 35 men outside the police station near western Baghdad’s Nissur Square, was one of several blasts in the capital.’ ‘
Dozens of other assassinations and bombings are reported by Reuters, including the discovery of 12 bodies in Mosul.
AP also reports that Prime Minister Nuri al-Malik addressed a closed session of parliament on Sunday in which he pledged a shake-up of his cabinet and pressed his plan to have US troops withdraw to garrisons to be called on only in emergencies. He wants to deploy Iraqi troops more actively instead. His defense minister, Abdul-Qadir al-Obaidi, however, demurred that Iraqi troops are not sufficiently well trained to take a more active role yet. Note to al-Obaidi: You commit your troops to battle and you’d be surprised how fast they get “trained.”
Al-Hayat reports in Arabic that al-Maliki also criticized parliamentarians whose parties have gun-toting paramilitaries, as well as those who have threatened to resign from parliament if they don’t get their way, calling both “irresponsible”.
His reference to threats to resign concerned the Sunni religious party, the Iraqi Accord Front, one of the spokesmen for which threatened to resign last Wednesday if it were not given more of a say in how Iraq is run.
Saudi Interior Minister Prince Naef said Sunday that Iraq has become a major base for terrorism. He expressed concern about Saudi young men being seduced to go fight there [i.e. against Americans and Shiites].