Tuesday, May 1, 2007

What's Happening In Iraq

On the anniversary of 'Mission Accomplished," let's look at the major factors that will determine how Iraq is faring - economy, politics and security.

The Economy

The U.S. Inspector General for Iraq issued a report that evaluated a sampling of U.S. reconstruction efforts. From Yahoo News:
If these projects are typical of the quality and effectiveness of operations and maintenance performance on transitioned projects, the value of the U.S. investment in Iraq reconstruction will be at risk,'' Inspector General Stuart Bowen said in the report.

The audit also said that Iraqi officials continued to report to the inspector general that ``significant amounts'' of Iraqi funds ``have been subject to improper diversion.'' The country's Commission on Public Integrity estimated Iraqis have lost about $5 billion to corruption each year, a figure that Bowen said is ``difficult to confirm.''

From Global Policy Forum:
Iraq’s broad economy has virtually collapsed and many factories and warehouses have been sacked and gutted. In the absence of security, neither Iraqis nor foreigners are interested in investing, while the no-bid Pentagon reconstruction contracts have achieved remarkably little. Faced with resistance threats, many foreign contracting firms have left and international development NGOs have withdrawn from Iraq as well. Little foreign aid has arrived, as skeptical donor governments keep their distance.

From the Brookings Institute :
Iraq's economy remains mediocre at best. ... [F]ederal coffers are in good shape. But even if there is money to spend, it is not being spent, and certainly not being spent well. A combination of violence, corruption, and federal interference in the efficient flow of some funds straight to provincial governments is impeding progress. ... Schools are not functioning well and health infrastructure is in even worse shape. Unemployment remains mired in the 30+ percent range. None of this is surprising in light of the security picture, but it is disheartening nonetheless.

Political Stability

Again, from Brookings:
Iraqi political compromise remains very limited. ... While the hydrocarbon law that would ensure fair sharing of oil revenues among all Iraqis has made some progress in its journey through parliament, little has happened over the last month, and the bill is still far from becoming law. Other areas where reconciliation and compromise are needed, such as reforming the de-Baathification process to allow lower-level Baathists to rejoin public life and compete again for jobs, are not showing much progress.

From a recent wire report:
U.S. House Armed Service Committee Chairman Ike Skelton Monday urged the Iraqi parliament to cancel its planned summer recess.

Skelton, D-Mo., said he is concerned the recess "will show the world that their determination is not as strong as those who are fighting and dying to support their efforts." Skelton noted a number of key legislative items have yet to be addressed in Iraq.

And, finally from BBC News, via Raw Story:

Democracy is failing in Iraq, a new BBC News video report surmises.

"Four years after President Bush declared an end to major combat operations in Iraq, the country's parliamentary democracy is barely functioning," says the BBC's George Alagiah. "Members of the 275-member Iraqi parliament face constant threats; no substantive legislation has been passed."

I didn't even bother posting on the renegade Sadr MPs or Sunni MPs who are threatening to quit the government.


War News Today provides the grim recountings of recent (like in the past 48 hours) Iraqi security incidents.


A Multi-National Division – Baghdad Soldiers Soldier was killed when a combat patrol was attacked with small arms fire in an eastern section of Baghdad April 28.

The roadside bomb killed three Multi-National Division-Baghdad soldiers and wounded another while they were on a combat patrol Sunday in eastern Baghdad, the military said. An Iraqi interpreter also was killed in the attack.

In violence Monday, a suicide car bomber apparently targeting an Interior Ministry convoy struck an Iraqi checkpoint near a busy square in the predominantly Sunni area of Harthiyah in western Baghdad, killing four people and wounding 10, police said. The bomber detonated his payload, causing part of the road to buckle, as he emerged from an underpass and was heading toward the checkpoint being manned by Interior Ministry commandos. Those killed included two commandos and two civilians.

Three roadside bombs went off in and south of the capital on Monday morning, killing a civilian and wounding four others, a well-informed police source said. A roadside bomb detonated at about 8:00 a.m. (0400 GMT) in the commercial street of Bayaa neighborhood in southern Baghdad, killing a civilian and injuring two more, the source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

In separate incident, a roadside bomb went off in the Abu al- Tayyara Street in Baghdad's southern district of Doura, wounding two civilians, the source added.

Gunmen killed three street cleaners on Sunday in the Adhamiya district of northern Baghdad, police said.

Eight gunmen were killed in a U.S.-Iraqi operation in Baghdad on Sunday, the U.S. military said, in what some witnesses described as a clash with the Mehdi Army militia loyal to Shi'ite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr. The U.S. military said in a statement one Iraqi soldier was killed in the incident in the Shi'ite Kadhimiya district.

At least two people were killed and 15 wounded when a bus bomb exploded in a tunnel targeting a police check point, police said. The explosion badly damaged the tunnel, which is on a main artery in western Baghdad.

In Baghdad, a suicide bomber blew up a vehicle outside a police headquarters in a western district, killing five people and wounding 12, a security official said.

Elsewhere in the capital, a former brigadier general in Saddam Hussein's army was shot dead in the volatile Dura neighborhood

The bodies of another three people killed in a gunfight in the capital were brought to Al-Yarmuk hospital in west Baghdad, the hospital said

A series of explosions rocked central Baghdad Monday night and witnesses reported seeing smoke rising from the heavily fortified Green Zone. The U.S. military said it had no immediate information on the blasts. About a dozen blasts began about 10 p.m. and lasted about five minutes. Iraqi police said several mortar shells landed in the Green Zone[.]

A roadside bomb killed a person and wounded six others in eastern Baghdad, police said.

A car bomb killed one person and wounded six others when it exploded on a main street in southern Baghdad's Bayaa district, police said.

Mortar rounds killed one civilian and wounded six when they landed on a residential area of northern Baghdad's mainly Shi'ite district, police said.

Around 11 am, a roadside bomb exploded when an American convoy passed by in Yusifiya neighborhood ( south of Baghdad ) without knowing the casualties.

Around 3.30 p.m. A suicide car exploded in Hay Al-Ja'mia neighborhood near Mula Huaish mosque injuring 4 civilians.

Around 4:50 p.m. A parked car bomb exploded in Al Baia neighborhood (street 13) killing 2 civilians and injured 8.

Around 5 p.m. A mortar shell landed in Al Husseiniya neighborhood killing 2 residents.

Around 5 p.m. A mortar shell landed in Albu Etha area killing one and injuring 1.

Around 6 p.m. Gunmen killed [an] interior ministry officer LC Alaa Mahmoud Mohamed in Al Ghadeer neighborhood.

Around 7 p.m. A mortar shell landed in Abu Disheer neighborhood. 2 residents were killed and 5 were injured.

Around 9 p.m. A mortar shell landed in Al Baia neighborhood damaging one house at least and started a fire in the house.

Police found 27 corpses throughout Baghdad in the following neighborhoods: 2 in New Baghdad, 2 in Sileikh, 1 in Shaab, 2 in Binouk, 2 in Qahira, 2 in Sadr, 1 in Shalchia, 5 in Abu Ghreib, 2 in Doura, 2 in Amel, 2 in Jihad, 2 in Baia, 2 in Shuala (one of the two corpses belongs to an Egyptian citizen his name is Hamoudi Hashim)

Mortar bombs killed six people and wounded eight in the northern Shi'ite Baghdad neighbourhood of Hussainiya, police said

Diyala Prv:

A suicide bomber wearing an explosive belt blew himself up inside a funeral tent in a Shiite enclave in a volatile province north of Baghdad, killing at least 20 people and wounding 30, officials said. The attack occurred at 6:30 p.m. as a Shiite family was holding a funeral in Khalis, a flashpoint Shiite city in Diyala province, where U.S.-Iraqi forces have seen fierce fighting with Sunni and Shiite militants.

A suicide bomber wearing a vest packed with explosives killed 32 people when he blew himself up among mourners at a Shi'ite funeral in the town of Khalis, north of Baghdad. The attack took place inside a crowded mourning tent. More than 52 people had been wounded, police said.

Around 1.45 pm, two female students were killed in a car which was supposed to take them home coming from Diyala university to Al-Sadda neighborhood near Bald Rouz ( 45 km east of Baquba) when gunmen opened their fire against them.

Around 1.45 pm, two female students were killed in a car which was supposed to take them home coming from Diyala university to Al-Sadda neighborhood near Bald Rouz ( 45 km east of Baquba) when gunmen opened their fire against them.

Today morning a road side bomb exploded in central Baqouba injuring 7 civilians including 3 children.

Police found 2 corpses in Al Khalis city carries multiple shots.

Chairman of Diala provincial council on Monday survived unharmed an attempt on his life when a bomb exploded near his motorcade in central Baaquba, capital city of Diala province, 57 km northeast of Baghdad, a security source said.


Authorities found six corpses, two of them decapitated, in an area north of the southern city of Kut.


He, meanwhile, reported a third roadside bombing targeting a U. S. patrol in the Yousifiyah town, some 25 km south of the capital, but failed to give the U.S. casualties as they immediately cordoned off the area. The U.S. military did not confirm the information from the town yet.

Gunmen killed two people, including an Iraqi contractor, when they carried out a drive-by shooting in the town of Yusufiya, just south of Baghdad, police said.


The bodies of six people were retrieved from two rivers in Suwayra, 40 km (25 miles) south of Baghdad, police said.


In the southern city of Basra, some five people were killed in an explosion Sunday. Iraqi police initially reported that it was a car bomb, but the British military said it appeared that the blast accidentally occurred while explosives and weapons were being moved.

Two British bases in Basra came under shelling attacks on Sunday night and Monday morning but no casualties were reported, a military spokeswoman said. "The British bases in the former presidential palaces and Basra International Airport came under attacks but these caused no casualties," Capt. Katie Brown, the spokeswoman for the Multi-National Force in southern Iraq, said in a statement received by the independent news agency Voices of Iraq

1 gunman was killed and other 4 gunmen were injured and one passing by civilian as they were attacking a military aircraft (according to eye witnesses) and the aircraft responded. The attack occurred in Al Hussein area western Basra.

Senior official of Sadr’s office captured in Basra by US army. Basra provincial council condemned the arrest.


An Iraqi police brigadier was kidnapped while returning home from work in the district of Baiji, said a source from the Sunni Salah al-Din province police.

Early this morning, a roadside bomb exploded when an American convoy passed near the check point of Biji refinery damaging one Humvee vehicle without knowing casualties.


In northern Iraq, a parked car bomb struck a police patrol in the Raas al-Jada, a mainly Sunni Arab area in the northern city of Mosul, killing one policeman and wounding two others, police Brig. Gen. Mohammed Idan al-Jubouri said. The attack occurred at 8 a.m.
About four hours after some 50 gunmen attacked a police station in the same area, prompting a firefight and clashes as police chased the gunmen through the narrow streets. Four of the gunmen were killed and two others detained, while one policeman was wounded, police said.

Police also cordoned off the area and blocked five bridges after four mortar rounds landed on the police command headquarters elsewhere in Mosul, causing no damages, said Brig. Saeed Ahmed al-Jubouri, the media director for the provincial police.

Two members of Iraqi Kurdistan Region President Massoud Barazani's Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) were killed by gunmen in two separate incidents in the city of Mosul, KDP sources said.

Al Anbar Prv:

One Marine assigned to Multi National Force-West was killed April 29 while conducting combat operations in Al Anbar Province.

A tanker laden with chlorine gas exploded near a restaurant west of the Iraqi city of Ramadi, killing up to six people and wounding 10, police and hospital sources said

A U.S. base on Monday came under a mortar attack in the western Iraqi city of Falluja, a police source said.


JollyRoger said...

But.... but... Chimpy, Petraeus, and Condolieslaot Rice all said the Iraqis have never had it better!!! John McCavein just loves to go shopping in Baghdad!!!

FunkyTown Fighter said...

So does this mean your not happy with the "progress" we have made over there? LOL............. No really though, these bastards must live in a fantasy world if they even remotely believe that we have made any progress over there. The ONLY thing they have managed to do is screw up Iraq more!
P.S. Thanks for checking out my blog! Hope to see you there more often.

steve said...

jolly roger knows s--t

Code Red said...

viva la revolucion!

TomCat said...

Hi Ron. Immediately after the capture of Baghdad, when the ChickenHawk-in-Chief dressed up in his flight suit to strut and crow, Bush's war of oil and conquest, no mater how ill conceived, was eminently winnable. Our troops had the support of the majority of Iraqis. Bush chose to have our troops guard the oil ministry and do nothing for the people, while Baghdad went to hell around them, and the people of Iraq watched and understood why we were there.

Larry said...

It looks like the same things with the economy and security in Iraq, is about the same thing that is going on in the U.S.

The only exception is thousands of people aren't being killed here yet.

Tom Harper said...

Yup, Mission Accomplished. It's been a fun cakewalk these past four years.

Vigilante said...

Not a single note for optimism in this compendium. Did I miss something. Why aren't you reporting the good news? Why do you hate America?

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