Baghdad shelled during Panetta visit

US Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta and his staff fly out of Baghdad International Airport to their hotel in Baghdad, Iraq, on Sunday July 10, 2011, at the start of an unannounced visit to Iraq where he will be meeting with senior military and political leaders. (AP Photo / PAUL J. RICHARDS, pool)

Three rockets hit Baghdad’s Green Zone on Monday during a visit to the capital by U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, Iraqi police said. No casualties were reported.

The rockets were fired from a Shiite-dominated neighborhood in eastern Baghdad, said police officials who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the media.

The Pentagon chief was visiting the U.S. military’s Camp Victory on the capital’s western outskirts at the time of the attack on the Green Zone, the heavily secured district in central Baghdad that is home to the U.S. and other embassies as well as Iraqi government offices.

Panetta, a former CIA director, was in Baghdad for the first time since becoming defense secretary.

He was to meet with Iraqi leaders to discuss the possibility of keeping some U.S. troops in Iraq beyond 2011. He was also expected to press Iraq for stronger action to stop stepped-up attacks on U.S. forces, especially from Shiite militia groups using Iranian-supplied weapons.

3 Responses to "Baghdad shelled during Panetta visit"

  1. griff  July 11, 2011 at 6:04 pm

    Wow! And here I thought the Iraqis were finally loving us for all that wonderful democracy we’ve bestowed upon them, not to mention the millions of dead, maimed, starving and displaced. Way to show your gratitude, heathens!

  2. woody188  July 11, 2011 at 6:13 pm

    These “rocket attacks” are often false flag events and used as an excuse to keep troop levels high and money flowing into a conflict that has lost political support. Three rockets, which are essentially fireworks that if lucky might poke out an eye or start a fire, are fired against a superior force which responds with overwhelming force. Sound familiar, like Israel/Palestine?

    • griff  July 11, 2011 at 7:01 pm

      Yeah, how did they know about the unannounced visit? Oh, I guess it was just another in a long line of coincidences.

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