The bottom line is clear: Our vital interests in Afghanistan are limited and military victory is not the key to achieving them. On the contrary, waging a lengthy counterinsurgency war in Afghanistan may well do more to aid Taliban recruiting than to dismantle the group, help spread conflict further into Pakistan, unify radical groups that might otherwise be quarreling amongst themselves, threaten the long-term health of the U.S. economy, and prevent the U.S. government from turning its full attention to other pressing problems. -- Afghanistan Study Group

Saturday, June 30, 2007

News & Views 06/30/07

Photo: An Iraqi girl looks at the destruction caused to her house during a raid by US and Iraqi forces in Baghdad's impoverished district of Sadr City. US and Iraqi forces backed by helicopters have killed 26 militants suspected of links to "Iranian terror networks" in raids in the Baghdad Shiite district of Sadr City, the US military said.(AFP/Wissam Al-Okaili)
[Locals say the people killed were civilians. – dancewater]

REPORTS – LIFE IN IRAQ

Residents Say 17 Killed by U.S. Were Not Insurgents

The U.S. military is investigating the killings of 17 people in a U.S. helicopter attack north of Baghdad a week ago, after residents of the area complained that the victims were not fighters from the group al-Qaeda in Iraq, as the military originally claimed, but members of a village guard force and ordinary citizens. A U.S. military spokesman, Lt. Col. Christopher C. Garver, said the June 22 incident in Khalis, about 30 miles north of Baghdad, was under investigation "because of discussions with locals who say it didn't happen as we reported it." The attack occurred in the opening days of Operation Arrowhead Ripper, an offensive against al-Qaeda in Iraq that is centered on Baqubah, about 10 miles southeast of Khalis. A U.S. military statement on the day of the incident called the dead men "al-Qaeda gunmen" and said they were killed after trying to sneak into Khalis.


U.S. raids Baghdad slum; 26 Iraqis die

But residents, police and hospital officials said eight civilians were killed in their homes and angrily accused U.S. forces of firing blindly on the innocent. Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki condemned the raids and demanded an explanation for the assault into a district where he has barred U.S. operations in the past. Separately, two American solders were charged with the premeditated murder of three Iraqis, the U.S. military said Saturday. And in Muqdadiyah, 60 miles north of the capital, police said a suicide bomber blew himself up near a crowd of police recruits, killing at least 23 people and wounding 17. A U.S. soldier was killed Friday and three wounded when a sophisticated, armor-piercing bomb hit their combat patrol in southern Baghdad, the military announced a day later. The U.S. military said it conducted two pre-dawn raids in Sadr City, killing 26 "terrorists" who attacked U.S. troops with small arms fire, rocket-propelled grenades and roadside bombs. But Iraqi officials said all the dead were civilians. [I don’t believe that, and more importantly, the Iraqi people don’t believe that either. – dancewater]


Sectarian Attacks Kill Dozens of Shiites in Baghdad

A spate of grisly attacks believed to have been carried out by Sunni Arab militants killed dozens of Shiites around Baghdad, just days ahead of a planned huge march of devout Shiites through Sunni heartlands to the remnants of a revered shrine. A rush-hour bombing Thursday morning killed 25 people in the largely Shiite neighborhood of Baya in southwest Baghdad, where the Mahdi Army militia has escalated violence against Sunnis, an Interior Ministry official said. Ten people were killed in a bombing Wednesday night in the mostly Shiite neighborhood of Kadhimiya in northwestern Baghdad. And the police reported finding 20 decapitated bodies -- a hallmark of Sunni extremists -- south of the capital, although other officials later disputed the account. The attacks took place ahead of the rally called by the Shiite cleric Moktada al-Sadr, who had urged Shiites to march to Samarra next week to protest the recent bombing that destroyed the twin golden minarets of the city's Askariya shrine. The shrine's dome was demolished in a bombing last year that unleashed a storm of sectarian killings. Mr. Sadr's office in Najaf urged Iraqis of all sects to use the protest ''to get close to each other and break all the barriers installed by the Takfiris and the occupation,'' a reference to Sunni extremists and the American military.


Operation: Adhamyia

Its been 3 days since the attack on the American patrol which ended up killing 9 American soldiers and starving all the population of Adhamyia. Here comes what happened: Day 1: Thursday 10 am, an American tank gets bombed by a roadside bomb and 9 soldiers were dead, then huge battle starts between American soldiers and unknown (or as I may say no one), ending up on destroying the main underground water pipe which supplies the whole street, and destroying high tension electricity wires which went down laying on the street and electrifying the drowned street.After the shootings from the American side, while the American tank was still burning, two patrols of ING comes to back the American patrol against again "no one", and continue to shoot with them randomly and destroying more stuff and ruining the surrounding houses. pictures may speak up for themselves.

…………Anyway, this operation is just not doing both sides any good, if as they say they are after Alqa`eda and this operation is beneficial for the people of the neighbourhood, well I see no benefit gained of ending up dying due to starving or lack of medications. I'm sorry for those 9 soldiers who has died due to the attack but I'm much more sorry for the innocent people of the neighbourhood who may die because of this siege. Anyway: Where is the Iraqi government from all this?? huh?? or is Adhamyia not a part of Baghdad, and haven't Almaliki said no the siege will not be constructed and he ordered to stop working on it.well guess what prime minister of the green zone, the siege is complete and you may kiss your ass because it seems like no one follows your orders, you're just a crown puppet moved by Americans, Alhakiem, Alsistani and Muqtada Alsadr.


Be calm... don't lose it

My daughter, one of 63 students of the third year, taking their last clinical test this year, left the house in high spirits in anticipation of a long summer holiday starting in several hours time. Abu Ahmed, the regular taxi driver who transports her and four of her fellow students, to and from college was very pleased that I had put away ten liters of precious petrol for him. They drove off to attend to their business, as did I. God willing they would be safely home at about one in the afternoon. At one, my phone rings. It's Abu Ahmed, "Have the girls made plans I know nothing about? I have been waiting for them this past hour, but I don't see them." My heart missed a beat. "I will call her straight away and phone you back."


Experts Caution US on Alliance With Iraqi Tribes

The hotel's tower is visible to most officials who work in the heavily fortified Green Zone, and U.S. officials had talked regularly with the sheiks and given them money. But the officials had no idea that the sheiks were planning to talk with their Shiite Muslim counterparts in the hotel's lobby, though clearly someone else did. One U.S. military officer based in the Green Zone characterized the American reaction as "Huh?" "No one here knew they were getting together until it happened," said the officer, who asked not to be named because of the sensitivity of the topic. In the end, the sheiks were operating on their own, and therein lies the risk in the U.S. strategy of working with Sunni tribal leaders. While the cooperation has helped quell violence in Anbar province, where tribal leaders turned on the group al Qaida in Iraq late last year, driving the radical Islamists from the province, it was by no means a signal that the sheiks would coordinate future actions with the United States or with Iraq's Shiite-led central government.


Theft, sabotage cut oil output

Anyone who wants to understand why Iraq's Northern Oil Co. still runs at just 20 percent of capacity need only visit the crews assigned to undo the work of thieves and saboteurs along the 50-mile stretch of pipes that dip below and above the sandy terrain between Kirkuk and Baiji. More than two weeks after terrorists first hit this remote section of pipeline, a ragged crew wrapped up another patch job in its never-ending repair work. A backhoe scooped up spilled gasoline from below the repaired line while a bulldozer shoved Iraqi desert into the hole that had been dug around it. The gasoline fumes could make a pit crew wheeze. "We fix it here, they break it there. We fix it there, they blow it up somewhere else," said Khabbuz Bai Hassan, the head engineer on the repair job, as he wiped his brow and squinted toward the horizon. Similar scenes repeat across hundreds of miles of pipeline that crisscross Iraq, explaining why the country's oil production still sits below prewar levels.

………At first glance, the landscape appears flat. But it undulates just enough to provide blind spots. So 30-foot-tall towers have been erected along the route. Those lookouts, in turn, have fallen victim time and again to bombs.


VIDEO: Dahr Jamail Talks About Conditions in Iraq


REPORTS – IRAQI MILITIAS, POLITICIANS, POWER BROKERS

Government said to have lost control of Basra

As U.S. troops battle to retake Baghdad and surrounding areas, the government is reported to have lost its control of Basra where almost all of the country's oil exports originate. The city, according to well-placed sources, is under the hegemony of militias who do not run its streets only but have imposed levies and taxes on oil output. “It may be too late for Prime Minister Nouri al-Naliki to restore control of Basra,” one source working for Iraqi intelligence said. The sources, who all spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of retribution, point to the growing Iranian influence in Basra and most of southern Iraq. The loss of Basra to Shiite militias is a blow to current U.S. military operations mainly directed against Sunni rebels and elements of al-Qaeda group in the country. The four-month long operations in which tens of thousands of U.S. marines are involved have foundered due to tough resistance from various Iraqi groups particularly those linked to al-Qaeda. British troops in Basra are almost powerless as their previous military tactics to retake control of the city have all but backfired.


Iraq's main Sunni bloc to boycott cabinet

Iraq's main Sunni Arab bloc is suspending its participation in cabinet because of legal steps being taken against one of its ministers, deepening the sectarian gulf between the country's politicians. The Sunni Accordance Front has six cabinet posts and the move is a blow to Shi'ite Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki at a time when he is under U.S. pressure to push through laws aimed at reconciling majority Shi'ites and minority Sunni Arabs. The bloc also suspended its participation in parliament a week ago over the ousting of speaker Mahmoud al-Mashhadani, one of its members. The latest move effectively removes Sunni Arabs from the cabinet and parliament, leaving Shi'ites and Kurds. "We have suspended our membership in the cabinet until the government puts an end to procedures being taken against Culture Minister Asaad Kamal Hashemi," the head of the bloc, Adnan al-Dulaimi, told Reuters by telephone from Amman. "We have told our six ministers not to attend cabinet meetings until the government halts these legal steps." Among the bloc's post are defence, planning and education.


Protest March To Samarra Postponed

A source close to the cleric told the Kuwait News Agency, KUNA, Friday that the event scheduled for next week was put on the back burner partly because of the government's inability to guarantee security.


The Baghdad Death Map

Iraqis Offer Their Own Security Assessment of Baghdad Neighborhoods ~ In their distinctive style of morbid humor, resourceful Baghdadis are circulating emails presenting their own personal assessment of the security situation in the capital. The detailed lists of what neighborhoods and areas are safe and what to avoid completely, because of Mahdi Army or Al-Qaeda activity or the random car bomb, are quite different from those found in Iraqi government or U.S. military statements. As many parts of the capital have become no-go zones for members of either the Sunni or Shia sect – or sometimes for both, it is a challenge for Baghdadis to identify areas where they are able to move freely and areas where they should better stay out. The following is a translation of one such email making the rounds among residents of Baghdad and on Iraqi Web forums. The sarcastic email, which was written in Iraqi slang, attempts to classify the districts of Baghdad based on their level of danger.


REPORTS – US/UK/OTHERS IN IRAQ

More Idiot Talk: Key to Evaluating Iraq Is at Its Local Level; President Departs From Past Rhetoric

The most important form of political compromise in Iraq is not among top Iraqi politicians in Baghdad, but at the local level, President Bush asserted yesterday, in a departure from past rhetoric on Iraqi politics. "To evaluate how life is improving for the Iraqis, we cannot look at the country only from the top down, we need to go beyond the Green Zone and look at Iraq from the bottom up," he said in a speech at the Naval War College in Newport, R.I. "This is where political reconciliation matters most, because it is where ordinary Iraqis are deciding whether to support new Iraq." [About 20% of the population voted with their feet and are now refugees. How’s that for a statement on whether life is “improving for the Iraqis”? Once again, Thomas Ricks shows his skills in stenography, no matter how ridiculous the statements some people make. – dancewater]


U.S. Shields an Accused Iraqi Killer

The American Embassy in Baghdad is offering de facto protection to the Iraqi culture minister, who an Iraqi judge this week charged with the attempted murder of a fellow parliamentarian, Mithal al-Alusi.


Half of Baghdad Now Under Control

In the face of stiffening insurgent resistance, U.S. and Iraqi security forces now control about half of Baghdad, the American commander overseeing operations said Friday. Maj. Gen. Joseph F. Fil, Jr., commander of Multi-National Division Baghdad, told reporters at the Pentagon that progress in securing the capital has been steady and that while he could use more U.S. troops he believes he has enough _ with the recent arrival of reinforcements _ to complete his mission. "Some wonder: Are we progressing fast enough? Are we ahead? Are we on track?" he said in a video teleconference from his headquarters in Baghdad. [Answers: No, no and no. – dancewater] "This is a fight against extremists. It's a fight to put power back into the hands of the average Iraqi citizens and to give them a vote and a voice in their own future, without intimidation or fear. I see progress, a steady progress, in every neighborhood that we've cleared and then established a full-time presence." [This last bit is a pack of lies. – dancewater]


Turkey warns of plans to invade northern Iraq

Turkey has prepared a blueprint for the invasion of northern Iraq and will take action if US or Iraqi forces fail to dislodge the guerrillas of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) from their mountain strongholds across the border, Turkey's foreign minister Abdullah Gul has warned. "The military plans have been worked out in the finest detail. The government knows these plans and agrees with them," Mr Gul told Turkey's Radikal newspaper. "If neither the Iraqi government nor the US occupying forces can do this [crush the PKK], we will take our own decision and implement it," Mr Gul said. The foreign minister's uncharacteristically hawkish remarks were seen as a response to pressure from Turkey's generals, who have deployed some 20,000-30,000 troops along the borders with Iraq, and who are itching to move against the rebels they say are slipping across the border to stage attacks inside Turkey. Among other things, Turkish military planners have been working on a scheme to establish a buffer zone on Iraqi soil to try to stop the rebels' movements. The US and the EU regard the PKK as a terrorist outfit, but Washington is nervous of any military operations by its Nato ally that could destabilise Iraq's Kurdistan region. There are fears too that any instability in the north could play into the hands of Iran, facing growing problems with its own Kurdish population.


No evidence ties al Qaida to recent bombing of a Shiite shrine

Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Friday that the U.S. has no "hard evidence" that the Sunni Muslim insurgent group al Qaida in Iraq was responsible for the recent bombing of a Shiite shrine in Samarra, although Bush administration officials cite the attack as proof that al Qaida in Iraq is stoking sectarian violence. It "seems to me that that's probably an analytical conclusion. I'm not sure whether they have a lot of hard evidence about it," Gates told reporters at the Pentagon. His comments come as the Bush administration has renewed its focus on Iraqi insurgents who claim to be affiliated with al Qaida. In a speech Thursday, President Bush called al Qaida the biggest threat in Iraq and said that al Qaida in Iraq was the same group that was responsible for the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. U.S. military spokesmen in Iraq also have begun citing al Qaida in Iraq more often after years of downplaying its importance. ……. Al Qaida hasn't stepped forward to claim responsibility for the explosion. In a blog posted on a Web site commonly used by al Qaida, one man scoffed at the suggestion that the group was involved. The blogger said al Qaida would have hit the shrine at midday, not at dawn, to maximize causalities.


Qaeda holds military parade in northern city

Hundreds of Qaeda-linked fighters drove into the streets of the northern city of Mosul, brandishing their weapons and shouting Islamic slogans. The parade, early this week, was a show of force that the group did not fear the presence of the lightly armed and terror-stricken Iraqi police officers and paid little attention to U.S. marines camped outside the city. Mosul has turned into one of the most violent cities in Iraq with the Qaeda fighters imposing their strict interpretation of Islamic jurisdiction by force. The city is being emptied of its once thriving Christian community following the murder of two priests and several deacons. Many churches, whose spires dot the city’s skyline, are deserted. Other minorities like the Shebeks, who are Shiites, and Yazidis, are also being targeted. Qaeda’s influence in Mosul, which many see as the country’s second largest after Baghdad, has grown tremendously since the start of the U.S. military campaign to subdue Baghdad more than four months ago.


COMMENTARY

The American Massacre at al-Khalis

The new Bushist line is that everyone killed by American forces in Iraq is "al Qaeda" - a transparent falsehood belied by the Pentagon's own assessments but now mindlessly adopted by almost every corporate media venue, with the honorable exception (as always) of McClatchy Newspapers. Of course, the Invader-in-Chief and his multitude of bootlickers in traditional media and the blogosphere have always vastly inflated the numbers and importance of those elements in Iraq that are associated with al Qaeda in some way, however tenuous. Indeed, we know, again from the Pentagon itself, that the exaggeration of al Qaeda's influence in Iraq has been part of a deliberate, well-funded "psy-ops" scheme. But now they have decided to dispense with the subtleties of psy-ops and simply repeat "al Qaeda" with every breath, in an effort to demonize all resistance (both in Iraq and at home, both violent and non-violent) to Bush's murderous boondoggle.

But while this deceit is peddled for domestic consumption – avidly gobbled up and regurgitated by the bootlickers, and spreading the intended misinformation among casual consumers of the news (i.e., the vast majority of Americans) – Iraqis have to deal with the brutal reality of the war. And they know that everyone killed there by the invading forces is not "al Qaeda." They know that many Iraqis being killed by the Anglo-American coalition are innocent civilians. And they are increasingly embittered at the American slander of their dead. This slander is being applied even to those Iraqis who have taken up arms against the very "al Qaeda" terrorists that the American military is purportedly protecting them from, Iraqis who are cooperating with the American-backed government and its American-trained military and security forces. The BBC reports about an horrific massacre of Iraqi civilians last week – an air attack with missiles and gunships that literally ripped to shreds the bodies of village guards who had just returned from a raid with Iraqi government forces on a suspected terrorist hideout. These men were then accused of being "al Qaeda gunmen" in Pentagon press releases trumpeting this magnificent feat of arms – accusations then duly (not to mention dully) parroted in the press.

But the people in the village of al-Khalis tell a different story. (And for all the bootlickers out there who have fully entered into the spirit of the sectarian bloodbath unleashed by Bush and resolutely reject any contradiction of Pentagon propaganda by Sunni victims, al-Khalis is a largely Shiite village, on the side of the American-backed Iraqi government.) The BBC, which acknowledges that it too simply repeated the Pentagon line in its first reports on the "triumph," has gone back to the village to dig up the truth – and to do what the Bush Regime never does, and what the American press does only with the most extreme rarity: give names to the "collateral damage" of Bush's aggression.

And the names of the slaughtered in al-Khalis cry out with bitter eloquence their silent condemnation.

Jassem Khalil, the Mukhtar of Hayy al-Junoud
Abbas Khalil, his brother
Ali Khalil, his other brother
Kamal Hadi, their cousin
Shaker Adnan
Abdul Wahhab Ibrahim
Mohammad al-Zubaie
Abbas Muzhir Fadhel
Jamal Hussein Alwan
Abdul Hussein Abdullah
Ali Jawad Kadhem

IRAQI REFUGEES

Iraq's displacement crisis: the search for solutions

One in six Iraqis is displaced. After a conflict which has now lasted as long as the First World War over two million Iraqis are in exile and a further two million are internally displaced. Most refugees are in Syria and Jordan - which hosts the largest number of refugees per capita of any country on earth. The vast majority survive with little or no assistance from the international community. Eight million Iraqis are in need of humanitarian assistance. Insecurity prevents a robust response to humanitarian needs. The UN’s dependence on Coalition military forces means it is no longer perceived by the Iraqi people as neutral. The Government of Iraq lacks capacity to respond to the crisis and inflexible funding mechanisms deny adequate support for agencies which are better able to assist vulnerable communities.


UNHCR calls for seriously ill Palestinian children in Iraq to be medevaced

The UN refugee agency on Friday issued an urgent plea for the immediate evacuation of at least a dozen seriously ill Palestinians - mostly young children - stuck in Baghdad or in a makeshift camp on the Iraqi side of the desert border with Syria. "Without evacuation and life-saving medical help, they could die or suffer lifelong complications," UNHCR spokesman Ron Redmond told reporters in Geneva. "We currently have 12 cases in urgent need of medical evacuation, the youngest just 15 months old," he added. Last week a UNHCR team travelled to the isolated Al Waleed camp near the border with Syria and found that several young people among the 1,071 displaced Palestinians there were in serious need of specialized medical treatment. They included a youth with a hole in his heart, two children with Hodgkin's disease, one youth about to lose his leg because of a vascular disease and a young man with severe diabetes who is losing his sight. But Redmond said there were more cases in need of urgent attention. "We have also identified a two-year-old with cerebral palsy who has very low immunity, is in urgent need of physical therapy and has stopped eating. Another child, a 13-year-old girl suffering from a spinal injury, will be permanently paralyzed from the neck down unless she gets treatment soon," he said adding that the girl's mother died a few years ago, her father was murdered in January and her home was burned by militia.

How to Help Iraqi Refugees

RESISTANCE

AFSC Symposium On Iraqi Refugees


Marines Drop Charges Against Vet Who Claimed Iraq War is Illegal

Liam Madden, the Iraq War veteran who claimed the military attack on Iraq was “an illegal war of aggression under Nuremberg principles” and that “war crimes were being committed in Iraq,” received word today that the Marines have dropped the charges against him rather than provide a forum for these issues to be debated. The Marines had claimed his comments were “disloyal” and threatened to reduce his discharge from honorable to less than honorable. “I planned to argue that my comments were accurate and therefore not disloyal. In fact, it is the duty of veterans and active duty members of the military to stand up and tell their leaders when war crimes are being committed,” said Madden. “Now that the military has chickened out and dropped these charges I hope others will join me in speaking out against this illegal war.”

Madden’s Speech: You Can’t Win a War Crime

Iraq Moratorium Day – September 21 and every third Friday thereafter ~ "I hereby make a commitment that on Friday, September 21, 2007, and the third Friday of every subsequent month I will break my daily routine and take some action, by myself or with others, to end the War in Iraq."

Quote of the day: And so, to the end of history, murder shall breed murder, always in the name of right and honor and peace.” - George Bernard Shaw - Irish playwright "Caesar and Cleopatra"

Security Incidents for Saturday, June 30, 07


MNF-Iraq is reporting the death of a Multi-National Division - Baghdad soldier in a southern neighborhood of Baghdad on Friday, June 29th, when his patrol was hit by an explosively-formed penetrator. Three other soldiers were injured in the blast.

____________________________________


From the Washington post: U.S. Officer Calls Insurgents 'Ruthless'

"This is a skilled and determined enemy. He's ruthless. He's got a thirst for blood like I've never seen anywhere in my life," said Army Maj. Gen. Joseph F. Fil Jr., the 1st Cavalry Division commander who has been in charge of military operations throughout the capital since late last year.



Baghdad:
#1: 26 people died in American raids in Baghdad's Sadr City neighborhood, the U.S. military said Saturday. In Sadr City, the military said those killed were ''terrorists'' who attacked U.S. troops before dawn Saturday with small arms fire, rocket-propelled grenades and roadside bombs. But Iraqi police and hospital officials said all the dead were civilians killed in their homes. ''Everyone who got shot was shooting at U.S. troops at the time,'' said Lt. Col. Christopher Garver, a U.S. military spokesman. ''It was an intense firefight.'' The Iraqi officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity out of security concerns, put the death toll at eight, with 20 wounded.

American troops entered the Shiite enclave in search of militants suspected of helping Iranian terror networks fund operations in Iraq, the statement said. There were no U.S. casualties, it said. But witnesses said U.S. forces rolled into their neighborhood before dawn and opened fire without warning. ''At about 4 a.m., a big American convoy with tanks came and began to open fire on houses -- bombing them,'' said Basheer Ahmed, who lives in Sadr City's Habibiya district. ''What did we do? We didn't even retaliate -- there was no resistance.'' The raids centered on the Habibiya and Orfali districts of Sadr City, police said.

#2: Four people were wounded when a mortar round landed in the Shi'ite neighbourhood of Abu Dshir in southern Baghdad, police said


Diyala Prv:
Muqdadiyah:
#1: A suicide attacker killed 20 Iraqis and wounded 22 when he detonated his explosives-belt near a volunteer centre for the local police department in Muqdadiyah city, the authorities told the Independent News Agency Saturday. According to a police source, the attack happened at noon.


Tikrit:
#1: Iraqi soldiers killed one gunman and detained 25 other suspects during raids in Sufait in Diyala province north of Baghdad on Wednesday, the U.S. military said on Saturday.


Daquq:
#1: Gunmen assassinated a local municipality official when they threw a hand grenade at his vehicle in the town of Daquq, 45 km (20 miles) south of Kirkuk, police said.


Kirkuk:
#1: Gunmen killed a civilian in the restive oil city of Kirkuk, 250 km (155 miles) north of Baghdad, police said


Mosul:
#1: Gunmen killed three women, including two sisters on Friday in the northern city of Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.


Al Anbar Prv:
#1: The U.S. military said on Saturday it had uncovered 35 to 40 bodies in a mass grave south of Falluja, in Iraq's Sunni dominated Anbar province. A Falluja hospital source said 35 bodies had been retrieved and were being finger-printed to establish their identity. The military said the killings were relatively recent and the bodies had been bound and bore gunshot wounds. The mass grave was found late on Friday near a place called Ferris, roughly 35 km (22 miles) south of the city of Falluja, after a tip-off from a local, it said.




Afghanistan:
#1: U.S.-led coalition airstrikes in southern Afghanistan left at least 30 people, including women and children, killed or wounded, an official said Saturday. Taliban fighters tried to ambush a joint U.S.-Afghan military convoy in Helmand province's Gereshk district late Friday before fleeing into a nearby village for cover, said Mohammad Hussein, the provincial police chief. Airstrikes targeted the militants in the village of Hyderabad, said Dur Ali Shah, the mayor of Gereshk. Shah said 30 to 35 people were killed or wounded but he could not provide an exact breakdown. Villagers reported casualty tolls far higher than 30 but those figures were not immediately corroborated by officials. Six houses also were destroyed during the clash, he said. "Right now we do not know the number of Taliban casualties," Shah said

#2: Pro-Taliban militants, in a Pakistani border town, blew up 13 oil tankers supplying fuel for international troops in Afghanistan, officials said on Friday. The explosion on Friday night targeted tankers parked in Landikotal, the main town of Khyber tribal district, 35 kilometres west of Peshawar, a security official said. An improvised explosive device planted underneath a tanker went off, triggering a massive fire and gutting 13 tankers, the official said on

.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Security Incidents for Friday, June 29, 07


MNF-Iraq is reporting the deaths of five Multi-National Division - Baghdad soldiers in a roadside bomb attack that was followed by small arms fire and rocket propelled grenades. The attack occurred in a southern neighborhood of Baghdad on Thursday, June 28th. Seven other soldiers were wounded in the attack.

_______________________________________




Baghdad:
#1: Five Multi-National Division-Baghdad Soldiers were killed when a roadside bomb detonated near a combat patrol in a southern section of Baghdad June 28. Small arms and rocket-propelled attacks followed shortly after the blast. Seven other Soldiers were wounded in the attack. All of the wounded Soldiers were evacuated to a combat support hospital following the attack. One Soldier has returned to duty.

#2: Four people were killed in a mortar attack in the Al-Fadhil district of the capital overnight and 10 more people were wounded in four other mortar strikes in different locations in the city, the Interior Ministry said.

#3: A number of mortar bombs struck the Green Zone in Baghdad on Friday and Reuters reporters saw smoke rising from the vicinity of the U.S. embassy. There was no immediate reports of casualties from the attack, an almost daily occurrence against the heavily fortified compound which is also home to key Iraqi government ministries and the country's parliament.

#4: A U.S. military convoy killed an Iraqi man in Al Rashad neighborhood, Iraqi police said. U.S. officials were not available to comment.

#5: A mortar shell landed in Al Karada neighborhood. No human causalities

#6: Around 6:30 p.m. Gunmen executed 1 man and 3 women; one of them was pregnant, in al Saidiyah neighborhood, residents said.

#7: Police found 7 dead bodies throughout the capital today. 2 in Saidiyah, 2 in Doura, 1 in Shuala, 1 in Jisr Diyala, 1 in New Baghdad

Diyala Prv:
Khalis:
#1: The U.S. military is investigating the killings of 17 people in a U.S. helicopter attack north of Baghdad a week ago, after residents of the area complained that the victims were not fighters from the group al- Qaida in Iraq, as the military originally claimed, but members of a village guard force and ordinary citizens. A U.S. military spokesman, Lt. Col. Christopher Garver, said the June 22 incident in Khalis

Muqdadiyah:
#1: Unidentified gunmen bombed Thursday night a Sunni mosque in Muqdadiyah north of Baquba, 60 kilometres north-east of Baghdad, an Iraqi police source said Friday. The gunmen used explosive charges to blow up Khalil al-Saleh mosque in the Askari district, which collapsed completely. There was no casualties resulting from the blast.


Haswa:
#1: In other developments, Iraqi police said a bomb exploded under an oil pipeline south of Baghdad on Friday, spilling crude oil and sparking a huge fire. The explosives were planted under a stretch of pipeline in the Mowehlah area of Haswa, a town 30 miles south of the Iraqi capital, a police officer said on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to release the information. The blast ignited a huge fire around 5 a.m., the officer said. By midday, firefighters were still struggling to extinguish the flames, which were fueled by a continuing leak of oil from the pipeline, he said. Workers also were looking for a way to temporarily cut off the oil flow, until a repair could be made, the officer added.


Kut:
#1: One woman was injured after a roadside bomb attack on a U.S. patrol in Kut, police said

#2: The body of a university lecturer was found beside a river in Kut, 170 km (105 miles) southeast of Baghdad, one day after he was kidnapped, police said.

#3: eyewitness said on Friday that a roadside bomb went off near a U.S. military convoy at the northern outlet to the city of Kut. An eyewitness told VOI that the bomb was planted at the northern outlet of Kut near the al-Zahraa public hospital, and exploded while a U.S. military convoy was passing by, destroying a Hummer. “The U.S. force started a random shootout after the blast,” he noted, adding no further details.


Basra:
#1: the British military issued a statement saying all of its bases came under attack from mortars or rockets in the past 24 hours, but there were no casualties or damage.


Balad:
#1: An Iraqi army patrol in Balad district found this afternoon three unidentified bodies that bore signs of gunshot wounds,” the source told the independent news agency Voices of Iraq


Tikrit:
#1: A roadside bomb was detonated at 11:00 am on Friday in al-Arbaaeen street in central Tikrit, injuring three civilians seriously,” the source also added


Mishada:
#1: In other violence, Iraqi police said a suicide car bomb exploded at Iraqi army post north of Baghdad, destroying the building and igniting a fire. There was no immediate word on casualties. The blast went off at a railway station in Mishada, a town 20 miles north of the capital, an officer said on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to release the information.


Mosul:
#1: One insurgent was killed and two were detained in Mosul following a clash with police, the police said.


Kirkuk:
#1: Unidentified gunmen opened fire against Karim Saber, a policeman from al-Shaab police department in central Kirkuk, killing him instantly,” the source, who asked not to be named, told the independent news agency Voices of Iraq

#2: Another policeman was injured in a separate attack by unknown gunmen in Wahed Hozayran region in Kirkuk,” the same source said. “Police forces rushed to the area and carried the wounded to a nearby hospital for treatment,” he noted.

#3: An armed group in an unknown car opened fire against a civilian in a region in southern Kirkuk, wounding him seriously. He was rushed to hospital for treatment,” the source continued

#4: the chief of the Taza police department south of Kirkuk, Colonel Orhan Abdullah, said that the province’s police forces killed on Thursday night a suspected gunman and arrested six others believed to be involved in killing three policemen last Wednesday. “A policeman was killed in the operation,” the colonel noted

#5: Unknown gunmen kidnapped four Iraqi civilians in southern Kirkuk on Friday. A source at the police in Kirkuk told KUNA gunmen stopped a convoy of trucks of a construction company and abducted four drivers and took them to an unknown place.



Afghanistan:
#1: US soldiers have killed four civilian members of the same family during a raid in Nangarhar in Afghanistan, an Afghan rights body has claimed. It says the soldiers also arrested 15 civilians during the pre-dawn raid which took place in Khogiani district which lies in the foothills of the provincial capital Jalalabad. Among those killed in the raid were an 85-year-old man, Mohammada Jan, two of his sons and a grandson


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Thursday, June 28, 2007





Photograph from "Tales of a Lonely Army Wife" SGT Trista Moretti died in Iraq on June 25th, 2007, from an indirect rocket (mortar, rocket, etc) attack in the vicinity of the village of Nasir Laftah southeast of Iskandariyah in Babil Province. "I got a horrible phone call early this morning from someone I used to work with. A friend of mine, who was stationed in Iraq, was killed yesterday in her sleep when her trailer was hit. SGT Trista Moretti was an amazing person...."

(1) The DoD has announced a new death, not previously reported by CENTCOM. Army Sergeant Trista L. Moretti, 27, of South Plainfield, New Jersey, was killed in an indirect fire attack in the vicinity of the village of Nasir Laftah southeast of Iskandariyah in Babil Province on Monday, June 25th. She was assigned to the 4th Brigade, 25th Infantry Division, elements of which are currently stationed in Iskandariyah. A friend of Moretti's has written a brief blog entry on the death, saying that she died in her sleep when a rocket hit her trailer. Her friend described Moretti as "military intelligence" and went on to say that she "was hilarious and beautiful and had this great Jersey accent."

(2) MNF-Iraq is reporting the death of a Multi-National Division - Baghdad soldier in a roadside bombing in an eastern neighborhood of Baghdad on Wednesday, June 27th. Four other soldiers were wounded in the attack.

(3) The British Ministry of Defense has announced the deaths of three of its soldiers in a roadside bombing in the southeast Basra City district of Al Amtahiya on Thursday, June 28th. They were on dismounted patrol at the time of the blast. One other British soldier is reported to be in very serious condition. Two of the dead were from the Black Watch, 3rd Battalion, The Royal Regiment of Scotland. The third death was from the 2nd Battalion, The Royal Welsh (The Royal Regiment of Wales).
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(4) MNF-Iraq is reporting the death of a Multi-National Division - Baghdad soldier in a roadside bombing in an eastern neighborhood of Baghdad on Thursday, June 28th. One other soldier was wounded in the attack.

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Baghdad:
#1: On Thursday morning, a car bomb exploded at a bus station in southwestern Baghdad, killing at least 22 people and wounding 31 others, an Iraqi Interior Ministry spokesman said. The attack at 8:15 a.m. (12:15 a.m. ET) burned at least 40 cars and damaged a half-dozen shops in the predominately Shiite Bayaa neighborhood.

A car bomb attack on a mini-bus and taxi meeting point in Baghdad killed at least 30 people and injured 50 others Thursday morning, according to a police source. The bombe went off in the southern Bayaa district during morning rush-hour when the area was particularly crowded. Bayaa is mostly inhabited by Shiites. The number of casualties is expected to rise due to the severity of the blast.

#2: two people died and 14 others were wounded when two mortar rounds landed in the busy Shurja market in central Baghdad.

#3: three mortar rounds slammed into a popular shopping district in central Baghdad, killing three pedestrians, police said. The attack damaged shops in the Shorja market area and wounded 14 people, an officer said on condition of anonymity as he was not authorized to talk to media.

#4: A mortar attack killed two people and wounded another in the eastern New Baghdad district, police said.

#5: Four people were wounded by a roadside bomb in a busy market in northern Baghdad's Shaab district, police said.

#6: A car bomb killed at least five people and wounded 11 others as it targeted a long queue of cars waiting for petrol in western Baghdad's Mansour district, police said. 16 cars were burnt in the blast.
#7: A Multi-National Division-Baghdad Soldier was killed when a combat patrol was struck by a roadside bomb in an eastern section of the Iraqi capital June 28. One other Soldier was wounded in the attack

#8: A road side bomb exploded near Al Tobchi not far from Ibn Haian bridge targeting a U.S. military convoy. Two Iraqi civilians were injured.

#9: A road side bomb exploded in Bayaa targeting a U.S. military convoy. 2 Iraqi civilians were injured.

#10: One civilian was killed and 1 was injured when gunmen in a speeding car started shooting randomly at people in Amil neighborhood.

#11: An IED exploded in Doura neighborhood. The explosion targeted civilians. 3 civilians were injured.

#12: A mortar shell landed in the Green Zone. No casualties report.

#13: A mortar shell landed in Al Sadriya. 3 civilians were injured.

#14: A mortar shell landed in Al Fadhl. 4 civilians were killed.

#15: A mortar shell landed in Al Zafaraniyah. 1 civilian was killed and 1 was injured.

#16: A mortar shell landed in Al Rashad. 1 civilian was killed and 2 were injured.

#17: A mortar shell landed in Al Karada area near Abu Nawas street. 2 civilians were injured.

#18: Police found 15 dead bodies in Baghdad 4 in Amil, 2 in Saidiyah, 2 in Doura, 2 in Bayaa, 2 in Kasra Wa Atash, 1 in Rashad, 1 in Al Wihda, 1 in Al Zafaraniyah.


Diyala Prv:
#1: The U.S. military said it had killed at least 60 al Qaeda operatives in Operation Arrowhead Ripper, an offensive in and around the city of Baquba in Diyala province that began 10 days ago. The military said 74 al Qaeda militants were detained and 31 weapons caches discovered.

Madaen:
#1: Iraqi national police said they found 20 decapitated bodies Thursday in the town of Madaen, southeast of Baghdad, according to an Interior Ministry official. Iraqi security and coalition forces were being sent to the location to investigate, the official said. Madaen is about 15 miles (25 km) southeast of the Iraqi capital.


Salman Pak:
#1: Sporadic clashes had been under way in the Salman Pak area for several days, between Interior Ministry commandos and suspected insurgents, the Kut officer said. It was unclear whether the discovery of the bodies was related to the recent fighting. At the time, ground forces commander Lt. Gen. Raymond Odierno said U.S. troops were heading into those areas in force for the first time in three years.


Nasiriyah:
#1: In Nasiriyah, about 200 miles southeast of Baghdad, local police said two suspected militants were killed early Thursday morning when the bomb they were planting near a house of a U.S. translator detonated prematurely.


Basra:
#1: It is with deep regret that the Ministry of Defence must confirm the deaths of two soldiers from The Black Watch, 3rd Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland, and one soldier from 2nd Battalion The Royal Welsh (The Royal Regiment of Wales) in Basra, southern Iraq this morning, Thursday 28 June 2007. The three soldiers were killed by an Improvised Explosive Device attack. The device detonated at approximately 0100 hrs local time against the soldiers, who were dismounted from a Warrior patrol in the Al Amtahiya district in the south east of Basra City.

#2: Five Iraqi civilians were killed by a British chopper in the southern Iraqi city of Basra, a police source said on Thursday. "A British helicopter opened fire against a civilian vehicle on Wednesday night in al-Hussein neighborhood in western Basra, killing the five civilians onboard," the source, who declined to be named, told the independent news agency Voices of Iraq. "The attack came after a shootout that flared up in the neighborhood between two tribes, al-Sawari and al-Shuwaylat," the source added. No word was immediately available from the British army on the incident.


Mosul:
#1: Two Assyrian men were killed yesterday, online Arabic webzine Ankawa.com reports. According to the police, Zuhair Youssef Astavo Kermles, 49, and Luay Solomon Numan, 21, from the National Union of Beth Nahrin, were killed in a drive by shooting at the small Christian community of Mosul



Al Anbar Prv:
#1: A policeman was killed and another was injured on Thursday in an attack by gunmen in central Falluja, a police source from the Falluja police department said. "Unidentified gunmen attacked two policemen while shopping in the Falluja marketplace in al-Andalous neighborhood in the center of the city at 11:00 am on Thursday," the source told the independent news agency Voices of Iraq



Afghanistan:
#1: A suicide car bomber hit a convoy of security contractors in the Afghan capital Thursday, killing an American and a Nepalese citizen and wounding three other Americans, police said. The Taliban claimed responsibility. Two Afghan civilians were wounded in the attack in eastern Kabul, said Najibullah Samsur, a local police chief. "There were two foreigner vehicles that passed near my shop and a third private vehicle hit them, causing the explosion," said Ahmad Shah, whose shop is close to the blast site. He said the attacker's vehicle and two of the contractors' vehicles caught fire after the explosion.

#2: The second suicide bomb on Thursday struck a vehicle of the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force in a remote area of the eastern province of Paktika, ISAF and an eyewitness said. "It was a car bomb," ISAF spokesman Major John Thomas said. "We have got ISAF casualties and Afghan local national casualties ... from what we know now they are all injuries," he told AFP. A witness, Mohammad Shah, said the attacker had driven a bomb-filled car into an ISAF vehicle near a hospital being built with help from the foreign forces. "I saw eight civilians wounded and one 18-year-old civilian is killed," he said.

#3: In other violence linked to the insurgency, the governor of the western province of Farah said Thursday that Taliban militants had beheaded three off-duty Afghan policemen. The three were returning to work after holidays on Tuesday and the bus they were travelling in was stopped by armed militants, governor Muhaidin Baluch told AFP. "The three were beheaded by Taliban," he said.

#4: ISAF reported meanwhile that it had killed "several extremists" in a battle in the southern province of Uruzgan on Wednesday

As always I'll add updates as needed.


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Wednesday, June 27, 2007

News & Views 06/27/07

Photo: Iraqis gather around a car that was hit by small arms fire in the Shiite enclave of Sadr City in Baghdad, Iraq, Wednesday, June 27, 2007. According to eyewitnesses, a US military patrol opened fire after getting stuck in a traffic jam. Two civilians were killed and three were wounded in the shootout. The US military did not comment. (AP Photo/Karim Kadim)

REPORTS – LIFE IN IRAQ

Casualty Toll of Mansour Bombing Goes Up

The casualty toll of the suicide bombing that targeted the coneference of tribal chiefs in Mansour Melia hotel went up to 27 dead and 15 injured. A suicide bomber wearing an explosives belt blew up himself inside the Mansour Melia hotel where the conference of the tribal chiefs was being held, said a police source Monday.


Assassins Kill Two More Tribal Leaders

Two more tribal leaders were assassinated in Baghdad on Tuesday, a day after a bombing at a hotel downtown killed 13 people, including members of a Sunni Muslim council that recently had allied with U.S. forces fighting Sunni insurgents linked to al Qaida. Sheik Hamid Abdul Farhan al Shujairi, a Sunni, was shot in a mainly Sunni area of Baghdad, police said. He reportedly had attended a conference several weeks ago supporting the government and fighting insurgents. Gunmen murdered Hamid Abid Sarhan al Shjiri, the sheik of the mixed Sunni-Shiite Shijirat tribe, while he sat in his car in the capital's southern al Saidiyah neighborhood. The deaths came as Iraqi authorities tried to determine how a bomber made it through a tight security cordon Monday at the Mansour Hotel and detonated explosives that killed at least six members of the Anbar Salvation Council, a Sunni tribal coalition that had been cooperating with U.S. and Iraqi government forces.


Baghdad Dating Game Adapts to War

Baghdad has changed almost beyond recognition over the past four years since the U.S. invasion, and little or nothing remains that would inspire romance or help it flourish. Instead, the streets are lined with concrete blast barriers topped with barbed wire and plastered with black banners announcing yet another death. Stinking, uncollected garbage and men with guns fill out the picture. Young women fear being out alone even in daylight. Female high school and university students travel in groups, delivered to and collected from classes by trusted taxi drivers or parents. The city's streets empty well before dark. Parties are unheard of. Cinemas are shut, some turned to warehouses. The National Theater, the only one known to be still functioning in the city, offers performances only in the morning. To foil bombers or kidnappers, they are not publicized. Other places associated with dating - cafes, fast food spots, ice cream parlors and riverside cafes - have mostly closed. Long stretches of Abu Nawass, a former Tigris riverside promenade named after a medieval poet from Baghdad who wrote about women and wine, have been mostly closed since 2003. There are plans to reopen it to traffic this summer, but it's not likely to return to its role as a haven for young lovers.


Curfew-Bound Fallujah

"Thank God and President Bush for this great favour," said Ala'a, a 34-year-old schoolteacher. "We are the only city in the liberated world with the blessing now of having bicycles moving freely in the streets." On May 21 U.S. and Iraqi forces imposed a security crackdown on the city following continuing attacks. Local non-governmental organisations such as the Iraqi Aid Association (IAA) have told reporters that the U.S. military is not allowing them access to the city. "We have supplies but it is impossible to reach the families. They are afraid to leave their homes to look for food, and children are getting sick with diarrhoea caused by the dirty water they are drinking," IAA spokesman Fatah Ahmed told reporters. "We have information that pregnant women are delivering their babies at home as the curfew is preventing them from reaching hospital."

Medical services are inaccessible to most because the hospital is located on the other side of the Euphrates River from the rest of the city. Extra security checkpoints have severely hampered movement within the city, and most businesses have closed. A year ago the local police cut mobile phone services. The curfew is also restricting residents' ability to go out and find much needed supplies in the markets. Residents told IPS that there is on average only two hours electricity in 24 hours. Residents say they are up against killing prices. "Now they are killing us with a new weapon," a young man with a mask covering his face told IPS. "A jar of gas costs 20 dollars and a kilo of tomatoes costs 1.50 dollar, and people cannot go to work." "U.S. snipers on rooftops are enjoying themselves watching us walk around to find a bite of food for our families," 55-year-old Hajji Mahmood told IPS. "They laugh at us and call us names. They should know Fallujah is still the same city that kicked them away three years ago." Life seems completely paralysed with little sign of movement under a blazing sun, with temperatures up to 45 degrees. "We are sweating to death because some of us went to those damned elections," said a 40-year-old lawyer, speaking with IPS on condition of anonymity, referring to the Jan. 30, 2005 elections. "The wise men told us not to, but we believed those crooks of the Islamic Party who promised to make things better," he said. Many people in the city accuse the Islamic Party supportive of the U.S. of leading the 'security plan' in al-Anbar province where Fallujah is located. A local political analyst offered his views to IPS via the Internet, on condition of anonymity. "I find it rather strange that to control a city under the flag of providing citizens with peace and prosperity, you deprive them of all signs of life," he said. "Arab, Muslim and all international community leaders should be ashamed of themselves for not even talking about this crime.


Christians Forced Out Of Baghdad District

The two men knocked on Abu Salam's door on a Friday morning. He was one of the last remaining Christians on his block. "Peace be upon you," they said, and Abu Salam, a man in his 50s, repeated the greeting. The pair, one fat and the other thin, spoke politely. Both were clean shaven and wore slacks and button-down shirts. "You are now aware the neighborhood of Muwallamin belongs to the Islamic State of Iraq," the bigger man said. "We have three conditions you can accept: You can pay a tax, become a Muslim or you can leave your house and we will help you take out your furniture. Within hours, Abu Salam and his family left their neighborhood of more than 50 years. They joined an exodus that has all but emptied Dora, a large district in south Baghdad, of its once-thriving Christian population. Abu Salam, who spoke on condition that he not be fully identified, citing fears for his safety, is staying elsewhere in Baghdad for now. "People will leave if things don't get better. It is chaos," he said. "If there is no imminent solution, Iraq is finished." Christian leaders say 500 families left Dora in April and May. The U.S. military acknowledges that a large number of Christians were uprooted but says the number is significantly less. The United Nations' refugee agency said it counted 100 families at one location who had fled Dora. The flight of Dora's Christians is an example of how the initial phase of the U.S. security crackdown here has failed to establish security and stop the sectarian "cleansing" of Baghdad's neighborhoods.


PHOTOS: The Children of Iraq


Iraqi Women Resist Return to Sectarian Laws

As Iraq struggles to define its future, there is one important group that has been largely left out of the process: women. But they are refusing to be left behind. With little international support or media attention, a network of more than 150 women's organizations across Iraq is fighting to preserve their rights in the new constitutional revision process. As part of a campaign to garner international support, the Iraq Women's Movement sent a letter in May to U.S. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and another to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon expressing concern over the constitutional review process taking place and calling for international support for their effort to preserve women's rights in Iraqi law. "As women face escalating violence and exclusion in Iraq, they have been marginalized in reconciliation initiatives and negotiations for government positions," the letter noted. "Even with the shy and insignificant pressure exerted by the UN and other international donors/players on the Iraqi government and politicians to fulfill minimum obligations of Security Council Resolution 1325, the action taken has been a sequence of disappointments…." Passed in 2000, Resolution 1325 emphasizes the importance of women's participation in conflict resolution and peace-building processes. A second resolution, 1483, applies this conviction specifically to Iraq. More than three years ago, the United States was instrumental in overturning an amendment to the interim constitution that would have lifted protections for women and children. U.S. and international pressure, and Iraqi women who took to the streets, succeeded in defeating the provision, which was contradictory to many other parts of the constitution.


REPORTS – US/UK/OTHERS IN IRAQ

Iran Says U.S. Hurting Iran-Iraq Ties

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei told visiting Iraqi President Jalal Talabani that "Americans have been opposing improvement in relations between Iran and Iraq and they are trying to damage the relations ... but the two countries should resist the damage," the report said. Khamenei, who has final say in Iran's state affairs, also blamed U.S. and Israeli intelligence services for the violent insurgency that wracks neighboring Iraq, the report said. It quoted Talabani as saying Iraq would pursue better ties with Iran. Deputy Iranian Foreign Minister Mehdi Mostafavi earlier said a new round of U.S.-Iran talks on Iraqi security would be discussed during Talabani's visit.


How to Help Iraqi Refugees

RESISTANCE

Iraq Moratorium Day – September 21 and every third Friday thereafter

"I hereby make a commitment that on Friday, September 21, 2007, and the third Friday of every subsequent month I will break my daily routine and take some action, by myself or with others, to end the War in Iraq."

Quote of the day: And so, to the end of history, murder shall breed murder, always in the name of right and honor and peace.” - George Bernard Shaw - Irish playwright "Caesar and Cleopatra"

Security Incidents for Wednesday, June 27, 07

(1) Reuters is reporting the death of a U.S. soldier in Ad Diwaniyah south of Baghdad in Qadisiyah Province on Tuesday, June 26th. His patrol was apparently hit with roadside bombs and rocket propelled grenades by elements of the Mahdi Army.

(2) The DoD has announced a new death, not previously reported by CENTCOM. Sergeant Michael J. Montpetit, 31, of Honolulu, Hawaii, died of a non-hostile, unspecified cause in Baghdad on Friday, June 22nd. He was assigned to the 15th Forward Support Battalion, 1st Cavalry Division out of Fort Hood, TX.

(3) The Dod has announced a second new death today, not previously reported by CENTCOM: Private Henry G. Byrd III, 20, of Veguita, New Mexico. Byrd contracted or sustained some kind of illness on June 18th while in Iraq. He was medically evacuated to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany where he died on Sunday, June 24th.

(4) the DoD has announced a third new death, also not previously reported by CENTCOM: Specialist Eric C. Palmer, 21, of Maize, Kansas. Palmer was severly injured in a small arms fire attack in Bayji, Iraq, on June 21st. He died on Sunday, June 24th, at the Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany. Kansas station KAKE is reporting that Palmer was shot in the head while on a foot patrol. He was stabilized at the scene, then evacuated to Landstuhl and placed on life support, to no avail. Palmer was better known to his family and friends as "Eeker". He enlisted in the army after high school graduation in 2004.

(5) MNF-Iraq is reporting the death of a Marine from enemy action in Al Anbar Province on Tuesday, June 26th.

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Baghdad:
#1: A car bomb killed at least three people on Wednesday in an attack on police vehicles near a busy market in northern Baghdad, a witness said. Police said there had been an explosion in the Suleikh district, adding 10 people had been wounded. The witness told Reuters he had seen at least three badly burned bodies and two police vehicles ablaze.

#2: police said drive-by shootings killed one man and injured six others in Baghdad. The man was killed when unknown gunmen opened fire from another civilian car in a southwestern section of the capital, police said. His son who was riding with him was seriously wounded.

#3: police said gunmen opened fire on a minibus in western Baghdad, injuring five civilians including the driver. The victims were two Shi'ite men and their wives, heading to the Shi'ite holy city of Najaf, south of the capital, police said. The shooting took place in a predominantly Sunni Muslim neighbourhood.

#4: Four pedestrians were also wounded when a roadside bomb exploded in eastern Baghdad, in the commercial Palestine Street area, police said. The bomb had apparently targeted a US military convoy, but there was no word on any American casualties, they added.

#5: Iraqi journalist Hamed Sarhan, 57, was killed by gunmen in southern Baghdad, Iraq's press syndicate president Shehab al-Tamimi said Wednesday. Sarhan was shot dead Tuesday afternoon on his way home, al-Tamimi said.

#6: The bodies of 21 people were found in Baghdad on Tuesday. Most of victims were found in the western Karkh side of the Tigris river, police said.

#7: "A six-Hummer military force, backed by U.S. choppers, opened fire randomly on civilians near al-Tahzeeb police station in al-Kayara region, killing four and injuring four others," an eyewitness told the independent news agency Voices of Iraq (VOI), noting that no gunmen clashed with the force.

#8: A U.S. force raided an institute for disabled children affiliated to the Iraqi Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs in eastern Baghdad, leading the ministry to consider suing the force for violating Iraqi laws and sovereignty of the state, a source from the ministry said on Wednesday. The ministry condemned the raid on the institute, which is located on Baghdad's Palestine Street, considering it a blatant violation of international laws and conventions and the regulations governing Iraqi institutions, the source told the independent news agency Voices of Iraq

#9: A suicide car bomb targeting a police commando checkpoint killed one policeman and wounded three other officers in the al-Jaderiyia district of southern Baghdad, police said

#10: The Iraqi army have killed four insurgents and detained 85 others during the last 24 hours in different districts of Baghdad, the Defence Ministry said

#11: Police found 21 dead bodies all over Baghdad. 1 in Shuala, 1 in Hurriyah, 1 an Amil, 1 in Ghazaliyah, 5 in Bayaa, 1 in Saidiyah, 1 in Khadra, 1 in Doura, 1 in New Baghdad, 1 in Sadr, 6 in Fdhiliayh, 1 in Sleikh.

#12: A car bomb exploded near a busy square in a predominantly Shiite area in northern Baghdad on Wednesday, killing at least 14 people and wounding 22, police officials said. The explosion occurred about 8:30 p.m. — about 90 minutes before a nightly curfew — as many people were out doing errands and buying ice cream on the square in Kazimiyah, according to the officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of security concerns. The 14 killed and 22 wounded included women and children, the officials said, adding that the glass was shattered in shops selling soft drinks and ice cream and other buildings.


Diyala Prv:
#1: Medical sources in Diyala province said that 19 people were killed and 28 wounded yesterday afternoon and evening after bombing the town with mortar shells. Governmental sources talked on the condition of anonymity said that attack started at 5 pm and ended at 7,00 pm. 41 mortar shells hit different neighborhoods of the town during the two hours.

Baquba:
#1: Gunmen have kidnapped eight Iraqi students near al-Muqdadiya in Baquba, the Association of Muslim Scholars said Wednesday. The gunmen stopped a mini-bus Tuesday and took the eight male students to an unidentified place, but left the female ones, the statement said.

Khalis:
#1: Governmental and partial sources in Khalis city denied the American claims about killing 17 gunmen in Khalis city. The sources said that the killed men are residents of Khalis town who joined the local committees to defend the town of Khalis from the attacks of the gunmen explaining that the men had joined the committees because of the lack of security forces

Muqdadiyah:
#1: A source in Diyala salvation council said that the residents of Wajihiyah village,one of the villages of Muqdadiyah town 25 Kms east of Baquba had defeated an attack implemented by gunmen from Qaida organization yesterday evening. The council said in a shot statement that about 50 gunmen led by Emad Jasim Shikhata, Salah Abdul Hasan Al Awsy and his brother Muthanna and Emad Ali Shalal raided the village from three sectors to break it in. the statement said that the people fo the village confronted the attack in clashes lasted for more than tow hours. A resident from the village (Qusai Najim Abid Al Timimi was killed and 3 others from the village were injured while at least 4 gunmen were killed.


Missan Prv:
#1: An Iraqi interpreter was killed and three British soldiers were injured in a traffic accident northeast of Missan, a military spokesman said on Wednesday. "The British soldiers were sent to a military hospital in Basra and their condition is stable," the Spokesman for the Multi-National forces in southern Iraq Major Matthew Bird told the independent news agency Voices of Iraq


Salman Pak:
#1: Six insurgents were killed when a British warplane bombed a building south of Baghdad following an attack on an Iraqi police checkpoint on Tuesday, the US military said. The Tornado fighter plane dropped a 2,000-pound (900-kilogram) bomb after insurgents attacked a police station and checkpoint near Salman Pak, southeast of Baghdad.
"After attacking the checkpoint, the insurgents entered a mosque and began firing on the checkpoint from the mosque's rooftop. The insurgents fled the mosque and entered the building which was later bombed," a US statement said. It said two US helicopters also responded to the attack launched by 30 rebels using machine guns and rocket launchers.


Al Zubair:
#1: Three gunmen stormed house of a member of the boarders’ guards in Al Marbad area in Al Zubair. The policeman was killed as he fought back the attackers and killed one of them.


Basra:
#1: the spokesman said also that a British patrol came under attack by gunmen in Basra."The forces started a shootout with unidentified gunmen," he added, noting that a British vehicle was damaged in the attack.

#2: The two British military bases in Basra were attacked by indirect fire in the past 24 hours without casualties," the major also said. The two British bases are located in the Basra international airport, 25 northwest of Basra, and in the former presidential palaces at the center of the city

#3: An Iraqi fisher man was killed and another was injured today. Colonel Abdul Kareem Al Zaidi, Basra police spokesman, said the two fishermen were in the Iraqi waters near Al Faw when Iranian guarding post shot them.


Samarra:
#1: A roadside bomb killed five Iraqi policemen on Wednesday north of Baghdad, and drive-by shootings killed one man and wounded six others in the capital, authorities said. After the bombing in Samarra, 95 kilometres north of Baghdad, police opened fire randomly on the area, killing one civilian and wounding two others, a hospital official said

A roadside bomb killed seven people, including five police commandoes in Samarra, 100 km (60 miles) north of Baghdad, police said, adding that two civilians were killed when security forces opened fire in the aftermath of the blast.

#3: Men in Iraq Ministry of Interior commandos uniforms executed a 60 year-old-man in front a his grocery shop in Mariam market in central Samara this afternoon. Shortly after, these men burned an apartment not far from the place after ordering the family that lives in it to leave and also burned three parked cars, a local police officer said.


Tikrit:
#1: Iraqi police found a head of a man with a hut of the Iraqi army. the head was found inside Tikrit bus station downtown Tikrit city early morning today

#2: A source in Tikrit education hospital said that the US troops delivered the hospital a body of a young man who was shot in his head and other parts of his body but the troops took back the body.

#3: An Iraqi army soldier was killed and his brother was injured when gunmen opened fire near Al Hliwa village (80 Kms east Tikrit )today morning.


Shirqat:
#1: Fourteen insurgents were killed when a truck they were rigging with explosives blew up overnight in the town of Shirqat, 310 km (190 miles) north of Baghdad, police said

1 man was killed and 4 others were wounded when a truck exploded in Al Jazeera area south of Mosul city last night. Another story about the same incident says that 10 gunmen were killed when a tank exploded while they were bombing it


Mosul:
#1: An athletic club in Mosul was badly damaged when gunmen planted bombs inside the building overnight, police said

#2: Five people were killed and three wounded in different attacks by gunmen on Tuesday in the northern city of Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

#3: Gunmen killed two members of the Assyrian's Beth-Nahrain Association Union in a drive-by shooting in central Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.


Gemen:
#1: Police patrols found an anonymous body near Gemen village north east Kirkuk early morning today. Police said that signs of bullets and torture were clear to be seen on the body.


Kirkuk:
#1: Four Iraqi policemen were killed in an ambush near the oil city of Kirkuk, 250 km (155 miles) north of Baghdad, when gunmen opened fire on their vehicles, police said.

#2: Around 2:30 p.m. Gunmen attacked Al Basheer city police station south of Kirkuk. 4 policemen were killed in the attack and one injured gunman was captured.


Al Anbar Prv:
#1: One Marine assigned to Multi National Force-West was killed June 26 while conducting combat operations in Al Anbar Province.

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