After the surge, Iraq is still a mess

An Iraq strategy for the rest of President Bush’s term seems to be emerging from consultations between the White House and commanding Gen. David Petraeus and Ambassador Ryan Crocker. The public will get a fuller look at that strategy when the two return to Washington to testify before Congress April 8 and 9.

One more chance to get it right in Iraq

We Americans have just one more chance to get it right in Iraq.

We failed tragically in the invasion of Iraq five years ago when our leaders marched us into the war without a clue about the tumult and insurgency that would result from a policy that was built upon baseless assumptions, blind faith and boundless hubris.

Study says ousting Saddam was a good idea

With Operation Iraqi Freedom now 5 years old, a new study confirms that ousting Saddam Hussein was justified and vital to U.S. national security. Though war critics hate to admit it, the Baathist dictator was up to his mustache in aid for Islamofascist terrorism.

War protests mark Iraq war anniversary

Thirty-two people were arrested on Wednesday when they tried to block entrances to the Internal Revenue Service in protests marking the fifth anniversary of the U.S. invasion of Iraq, police said.

Protesters had planned to shut down the building that houses the U.S. tax-collection agency, one of several antiwar events planned across Washington as the Iraq war enters its sixth year.

More pilgrims die in another Iraq attack

A roadside bomb killed four Shiite pilgrims and wounded 15 south of Baghdad Monday in at least the third fatal attack on people traveling to one of their sect’s most sacred gatherings, officials said.

The death toll rose from 40 to 56 from a suicide bombing Sunday — one of Iraq’s deadliest attacks this year.

In eastern Baghdad, another roadside bombing wounded three pilgrims. A second bomb that went off a few minutes later about 70 yards away wounded a traffic policeman riding to the scene on his motorcycle.

Suicide bomber slaughters 40 pilgrims in Iraq

A suicide bomber blew himself up amid a crowd of Shiite pilgrims south of Baghdad on Sunday, killing at least 40 people, police and medical officials told AFP.

At least 60 people were also wounded in the blast in the town of Iskandiriyah, said Karim Al-Tamimi, a police lieutenant from the province of Babil.

“At around 3:00 pm, when pilgrims were eating their lunch inside the tent, a bomber blew himself up amid the crowd,” said Tamimi.

Mohammed Al-Zaidi, of Babil province state health office, gave the same toll and said that at least 25 of those wounded were seriously injured.

Baghdad bombs leave 64 dead

A female suicide bomber blew herself up at the main pet market in central Baghdad, killing at least 46 people and wounding dozens in the deadliest bombing to strike the capital since 30,000 more American troops began flooding into central Iraq last spring, police said.

About 20 minutes later, a second female suicide bomber struck another bird market in a predominantly Shiite area in southeastern Baghdad. That blast killed at least 18 people and wounded 25, police said.

More troops headed for Afghanistan

Military officials said Monday that about 3,200 Marines are being told to prepare to go to Afghanistan — a move that will boost combat troop levels in time for an expected Taliban offensive this spring.

Once complete, the deployment would increase U.S. forces in Afghanistan to as much as 30,000, the highest level since the 2001 invasion after the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.

The notices come as explosions rocked Kabul's most popular luxury hotel Monday, killing at least six people, including one American and a journalist from Norway. Officials said the assault on the Serena Hotel by militants may signal a new era of Taliban attacks.

When war becomes a video game

Every war produces its breakthrough in military technology, and the contributions of the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan to the science of warfare may well be the unmanned aerial vehicle.

Pentagon figures obtained by the Associated Press show that the military’s use of drones more than doubled over the past year, and an even more aggressive use of UAVs is expected. All told, the AP reported, the drones have flown more than 500,000 hours, mostly in Iraq and mostly in the last year.

Suicide bomber kills 22 in Iraq

A suicide bomber exploded a pickup truck outside a residential complex belonging to a state-run oil company north of Baghdad on Tuesday, killing 22 people and wounding at least 50, local officials said.

In a separate attack northeast of the capital, four people were killed in a suicide bombing targeting a funeral procession for two members of an anti-al-Qaida organization, officials said.

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