Sunday, May 20, 2007

Iraq: Beware Gunmen Wearing Army Uniforms!

Kirk Semple of the New York Times reports:
Gunmen in Iraqi Army Uniforms Kill 15 in Eastern Village
BAGHDAD, May 19 — Gunmen wearing Iraqi Army uniforms dragged 15 Shiite Kurds into the street in an eastern Iraqi village and shot them dead on Saturday, Iraqi government officials said.

Residents of the village, Hamid Shifi, had posted guards at the entrances to the town, apparently anticipating an attack by Sunni Arab insurgents who had been increasingly active in the area, according to a police commander in Baquba, the capital of Diyala.

But the guards waved the gunmen through their checkpoints, thinking they were authentic soldiers, the police official said. The gunmen grabbed the guards, dragged several other men from their homes and killed them all, the official said.
What do you think happened? To me it looks like the sort of thing we were talking about here.

Meanwhile, in the supposedy safe Green Zone,
Two mortar shells or rockets pelted the Green Zone on Saturday morning after Prime Minister Tony Blair of Britain arrived in Baghdad for a farewell visit. An American contractor was wounded in the explosions, according to a spokesman for the American Embassy, though Mr. Blair’s delegation was apparently not directly affected by the attack.
How typical!
An Iraqi was wounded in another volley of three mortar rounds or rockets that hit the Green Zone on Saturday afternoon, said the spokesman, Lou Fintor.

In recent weeks, the Green Zone has suffered near-daily barrages of mortars and rockets, some from predominantly Shiite neighborhoods to the east. The attacks have threatened the zone’s status as the safest place in Iraq. Many officials working in the enclave have begun wearing body armor outside their offices.
Ha! Even in the midst of all this carnage, you almost have to laugh at the stock phrases The "zone’s status as the safest place in Iraq" is a good one.

The people running this war have been trying to make the Green Zone the only safe place in Iraq! -- and they can't even do that! Not that it matters to them. They're safe and sound elsewhere.

But meanwhile, elsewhere in Iraq ...
One soldier was killed on Saturday when his patrol was struck by a bomb planted on a road south of Baghdad, officials said. Four other soldiers were killed in attacks on Friday, the military said: two when their patrol was hit by a homemade bomb and small-arms fire in northwestern Baghdad; one by small-arms fire during a combat operation in the capital; and one while on a combat mission in Anbar Province, in western Iraq.

Three Iraqi Army soldiers were killed, and 10 people, including at least seven civilians, were wounded during clashes between the Iraqi Army and militants in Diwaniya, south of Baghdad, said an official at the city’s government security center. Iraqi security forces have been cracking down on Shiite militias in the city, and on Wednesday, scores of fighters loyal to the Shiite cleric Moktada al-Sadr fought street battles against Iraqi soldiers in protest the security push.
In Mashiti, a village north of Khalis in Diyala Province, gunmen opened fire on a civilian car, killing four people and wounding four, the Diyala police commander said.

In Baghdad, two suicide car bombs exploded near Iraqi Army checkpoints in the Yarmouk and Mansour neighborhoods, killing three soldiers and wounding eight, an Interior Ministry official said. Another car bomb exploded in the Mwasalat neighborhood in western Baghdad, killing at least two people and wounding four, the official said.

At least 20 bodies were found dumped in the streets of Baghdad on Saturday, the ministry official added.
Same old, same old ... except every now and then when the old gunmen-in-army-uniforms op cranks it up a notch.

What a lovely occupation we've got going now!

And the only way out ... is out!