Monday, April 17, 2006

U.S. Marines Repel Coordinated Assault - Yahoo! News

The most interesting part of the entire article which pretty much tells you what sparked the uptick in attacks was all the way at the bottom:

Another 17 bodies of people believed victims of sectarian reprisal killings were found Monday, including one in Basra and the rest in Baghdad. They included the body of Taha al-Mutlaq, brother of leading Sunni Arab politician Saleh al-Mutlaq, who was found in a Shiite area of west Baghdad.

The problem of course is that he could have been killed by Shia militia. Maybe he went to talk to one group or the other to try to move something forward for his brother who has cabinet aspirations and whose name has come up several times for President or Prime Minister along with that of Alawi. Although, why any Shia militia would be so stupid as to kill the brother of a highly visible Sunni politician and leave his body in the Shia area, thus sparking more sectarian violence, is a mystery. It seems quite foolish, unless of course it was Sadr's Mehdi militia who seem much more like trigger happy goons who probably wouldn't care who they killed as long as their identity card gave their sect as "Sunni". (I keep wondering when they are going to issue non-denominational ID cards).

Or, maybe al-Mutlaq's position seemed to be too conciliatory for one of the Sunni group and they killed his brother in warning.

Or, maybe the Sunni Islamist never liked al-Mutlaq in the first place, killed his brother and then tossed his body in a Shia area in order to stir violence. It could be a number of things. It will be interesting to find out what the Iraqi media indicates al-Mutlaq had been doing just prior to the murder.

In any case, it certainly could serve to harden Mutlaq's position against the Dawa or Sciri Shia in the Assembly.

One would need to be omniscient to know for sure what happened, but its very likely the Sunni insurgents decided to take reprisals against anyone they thought was involved.

On another note, according to the story, the Marine's fought of 50 insurgents (estimated). I support the effort there and our soldiers, but is anyone else wondering why in Ramadi 50 insurgents can seem to coalesce and attack our forces unnoticed in a secure area? We don't have more lookouts or patrols? Or, does anyone notice that every time an attack is being noted out of this area, somebody there consistently gives the number as "50"?

Who commands Ramadi? Is the commander a body count guy? Is this coming from our Iraqi counterparts who may be boosting the number of insurgents to off set the number of casualties his unit took? Two Iraqi soldiers died. Unknown wounded. Five insurgents died. Unknown wounded. But they fought of 50 attackers? And only took two KIA?

It stinks a little and I hope that the military is not turning in crazy numbers. I understand that this was a coordinated attack with two car bombs and just maybe that would mean 50 insurgents, but I still can't get past that number being replayed through every attack in Ramadi the last month or so.

If there are that many insurgents able to coordinate regular attacks, maybe Ramadi is ready to be Fallujah part II?

U.S. Marines Repel Coordinated Assault - Yahoo! News

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