Wednesday, March 01, 2006

A Lamb With Five Legs

Civil war has begun in Iraq! Because the AP says so:
By STEVEN R. HURST, Associated Press Writer Tue Feb 28, 11:15 PM ET
BAGHDAD, Iraq - Sunnis and Shiites traded bombings and mortar fire against mainly religious targets in Baghdad well into the night Tuesday, killing at least 68 people a day after authorities lifted a curfew that had briefly calmed a series of sectarian reprisal attacks.
At least six of Tuesday's attacks hit clearly religious targets, concluding with a car bombing after sundown at the Shiite Abdel Hadi Chalabi mosque in the Hurriyah neighborhood that killed 23 and wounded 55. A separate suicide bombing killed 23 people at an east Baghdad gas station, where people had lined up to buy kerosine.

...Iraq began to tilt seriously toward outright civil war after the Feb. 22 bombing of the important Shiite Askariya shrine in the mainly Sunni city of Samarra, 60 miles north of Baghdad.

...The sectarian violence has hit Baghdad hardest because the population in the capital is about evenly divided between Shiites and Sunnis, more so than in any other region of the country.
At about the same time as the attack on the Shiite Abdel Hadi Chalabi mosque, a mortar round landed near the Shiite Imam Kadhim shrine in the Kazimiyah neighborhood on the opposite side of the Tigris River, killing one and wounding 10.
Those attacks appeared to have been in retaliation for assaults on Sunni places of worship earlier in the day.
North of Baghdad, a blast badly damaged a Sunni mosque where the father of
Saddam Hussein was buried in the family's ancestral hometown, Tikrit. The Iraqi Islamic Party reported a bomb hit the Sunni Thou Nitaqain mosque in the Hurriyah neighborhood at 8 a.m. Tuesday, killing three and wounding 11. Gunmen in two speeding cars opened fire on the Sunni al-Salam mosque in the western Baghdad's Mansour district, killing a guard.
Late Tuesday police reported finding the body of Shiite cleric Hani Hadi handcuffed, blindfolded and shot in the head near a Sunni mosque in Baghdad's notorious Dora neighborhood.
One of the day's bloodiest attacks came when a suicide bomber detonated an explosives vest packed with ball bearings among people lined up to buy kerosine at a crowded filling station in east Baghdad. The blast killed 23 people and wounded 51, leaving behind the charred and twisted remains of wheeled carts that customers had used to transport fuel canisters to the station.
A car bombing in the same neighborhood targeted a police patrol and killed five people and wounded 17 — all civilians.
Another car bomb hit a small market opposite the Shiite Timimi mosque in the mostly Shiite Karradah neighborhood, killing six people and wounding 16.
We can either believe that in six days since the insurgents blew up the Golden Dome, the average Iraqi has not only acquired the munitions for car bombs and mortar attacks, but linked them up with the expert personnel to employ them flawlessly...or that these car bombings, suicide bombings, and mortar attacks are by the same slugs who've been employing them against Coalition forces and Iraqi security forces for three years, in step with the new insurgent tactic launched with the strike on the Golden Dome six days ago.

I think it's the same insurgents, and these are insurgent strikes, not "civil war" as in Rwanda and Haiti and Liberia where the common citizen ran out and started fighting.

The AP apparently doesn't think so, since it publishes reports describing the attacks as retaliation and sectarian violence. Which would mean the various sects of Iraq have suddenly, this week, acquired arsenals that would make the Terminator gawk.

Maybe the AP truly believes that; but I suspect them of calling a lamb's tail a fifth leg as according to the post-Vietnam media template.

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