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Aug 30th, 2009


Bombs Kill 18 People Near Baghdad

Image: Car bomb attack in Iraq
Iraqi policemen inspect the wreckage of a vehicle used in an attack in Shirqat that killed at least nine people and wounded 17 others, police said. (Photo credit: Sabah al-Bazee / Reuters)


August 29, 2009

BAGHDAD – Bombs struck a cafe in Baghdad and remote communities in northern Iraq on Saturday, killing at least 18 people, as the visiting Iranian foreign minister warned that Iraq’s instability affected the whole region.

The blasts came just over a week after suicide truck bombers devastated the foreign and finance ministries in Baghdad, killing about 100 people and dealing a blow to confidence in the Iraqi government’s ability to protect the people as U.S. forces scale back their presence.

Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki called on neighboring countries to play a positive role in helping stabilize Iraq. His comments took on added significance amid a diplomatic dispute between Iraq and Syria over demands that Damascus extradite suspected Saddam Hussein loyalists blamed for the Baghdad ministry bombings.

“The lack of stability and security in Iraq will definitely affect the region,” Mottaki said at a news conference with his Iraqi counterpart, Hoshyar Zebari. “All of Iraq’s neighbors should work seriously and help Iraq in providing security and stability.”

Al-Qaida alliance blamed

The Iraqi government has blamed an alliance of al-Qaida in Iraq and Saddam loyalists it says are based in Syria for the Aug. 19 bombings and demanded that Damascus hand over two suspected plotters, raising tensions between the two countries.

Iraqi forces have stepped up security in Baghdad and other cities since the truck bombings.

But attackers were still able to detonate an explosives-laden motorcycle near a cafe in an eastern section of the capital at about 8 p.m. on Saturday, killing at least two civilians and wounding 12, according to police and hospital officials.

Saturday’s deadliest attack was a suicide truck bombing targeting a small police station in the Sunni village of Hamad north of Baghdad, killing at least 12 people, including six policemen, and wounding 15, according to Iraqi officials.

Such remote villages often depend on a small security force for protection. Bombers have been exploiting that vulnerability in villages surrounding Mosul, in particular. They have mainly targeted ethnic minorities. …

Sinjar hit several times by bombs

A second bombing in northern Iraq targeted a market in the city of Sinjar, near the Syrian border. An explosives-laden truck blew up, killing at least four people and wounding 23, police said.

Sinjar, which is near the volatile city of Mosul, has been hit several times by bombings, most recently on Aug. 13 when double suicide bombings killed 21 people in a cafe. …

The city, which is dominated by members of the Kurdish-speaking Yazidi religious minority, was also hit by four suicide truck bombers nearly simultaneously, killing as many as 500 Yazidis, on Aug. 14, 2007.

Iraqi troops foiled another attempted suicide car bombing in the mainly Sunni Azamiyah area in northern Baghdad, shooting to death the attacker as he tried to flee, military spokesman Maj. Gen. Qassim al-Moussawi said.

Are Iraqi security forces up to the task?

The spike in deadly bombings has heightened fears about the abilities of Iraqi security forces to protect the people just two months after U.S. forces pulled back from populated areas, with plans to fully withdraw from the country by the end of 2011. …

The Iranian foreign minister also met with Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki and President Jalal Talabani before traveling south to the holy city of Najaf for the burial of one of Iraq’s most powerful Shiite leaders, Abdul-Aziz al-Hakim. Al-Hakim died Wednesday of lung cancer in Tehran.

Thousands of mourners followed al-Hakim’s casket in a procession when it arrived in Najaf after a three-day tour through Iran, Baghdad and Karbala.

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Related report

U.S. general: Impact of Iraq violence still unclear

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Related recent reports on this site

Bomb Blasts Across Baghdad (Aug. 19, 2009)

Image: Firefighters at bombing scene near Iraqi Foreign Ministry in Baghdad
Firefighters respond to a bombing near the Iraqi Foreign Ministry in Baghdad, Iraq, on Aug. 19, 2009. (Photo credit: Khalid Mohammed / AP)

More Bombings in Baghdad (Aug. 16, 2009)


An Iraqi policeman secures the scene of a bomb attack that targeted a police patrol in the Karrada neighborhood, central Baghdad, Iraq, Aug. 16, 2009. Several people were injured in the blast, police said. (Photo credit: AP /Hadi Mizban)

Sustained Iraqi Insurgency (Aug. 12, 2009)

Image: Grieving in Mosul
Women share their grief following a bomb attack in Mosul, northern Iraq, on Aug. 10, 2009. (Photo credit: Nawras al-Taei / EPA)

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FROM THE ARCHIVES: One Year Ago Today — August 30, 2008

On the Campaign Trail: Day 47

One year ago today, on the 47th day of my campaign against U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann for the Republican nomination as House of Representatives candidate in Minnesota’s 6th Congressional District, in line with my primary campaign focus on national security issues, I issued a statement opposing the war in Iraq.

Here, one year later, is the full text of that statement:

Aubrey ImmelmanMy name is Aubrey Immelman and I’m challenging the party-endorsed candidate for the Republican nomination in the Sixth Congressional District.

My main reason for running is U.S. national security — specifically, the unintended consequences of the Iraq war.

Plain and simple, the invasion of Iraq was a mistake.

More than just exacting a huge cost in American blood, treasure, and loss of international stature, our military intervention in Iraq has created complex security challenges for the United States.

Before the invasion, we had in place a very successful containment policy against Iraqi aggression — preserving a delicate balance of power between Iran and Iraq in one of the world’s most volatile regions, the Middle East.

The removal of Saddam has empowered Iran, with its nuclear ambitions, and placed Iraq under the control of Islamist Shiite leaders closely aligned with Iran — thereby creating an infinitely more serious threat to U.S. national security in the region than existed before the invasion.

ParaBn-patrol.jpg On Patrol - Parachute Batallion picture by Rifleman-AlI’m the only candidate in the Sixth District congressional race with military experience, trained as an airborne soldier in counterinsurgency and anti-terrorist operations and with professional credentials as a military consultant on nuclear counterproliferation, threat assessment, deterrence, and psychological operations.

I offer my specialized training and expertise to help secure the vital national security interests of the United States in the wake of the attacks of 9/11 and emerging security threats triggered by the ill-conceived, short-sighted Iraq war.

I have not taken any money to run for office, am not beholden to special interests, and come with no strings attached. My first responsibility will be to ordinary Minnesotans in the Sixth District.

In my campaign, I have walked the length of the District, 100 miles from Freeport in the north to Stillwater in the south, and across the District, 50 miles from Foley in the east to Paynesville in the west. With my feet firmly on the ground, my loyalties are clear.

I disdain the deplorable level of partisanship in Washington. I will reach across the aisle, where possible, to get things done and will strive to work productively with all reasonable people. Despite ideological differences, we’re all American.

There are some things worth dying for. But invading countries that pose no imminent threat to the United States is not one of them. …

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2 Responses to “Iraq War Destabilizes Middle East”
  1. Immelman for Congress » Blog Archive » Tom Horner at the State Fair Says:

    [...] Iraq War Destabilizes Middle East [...]

  2. Immelman for Congress » Blog Archive » Record Number of U.S. Troops Killed in Afghanistan Says:

    [...] Iraq War Destabilizes Middle East [...]

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