Iraq: August 7, 2003

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A car bomb went off in front of the Jordanian embassy in the capital. Eleven people were killed and 57 wounded. Right after the explosion, several dozen Iraqis rushed into the embassy, shouting anti-Jordanian slogans. Jordan is now hated by pro and anti-Saddam Iraqis. Long an ally of Iraq, Jordan has upset many Iraqis for supporting the coalition invasion, or for providing sanctuary for two of Saddam Hussein's daughters.

Gun battles in Baghdad and Tikrit continue to break out, as Iraqis attack American troops. The Iraqis usually lose, although in the past two days, three American soldiers have been killed, bringing the death toll for American troops since May 1 to 55. 

There are 30,000 Iraqi police on duty now, but not all of them are effective in restoring law and order. Some police are extorting money from civilians, or accepting bribes. The coalition authority is making an attempt to catch corrupt cops, which is something you don't see very often in Iraq.

US troops have hired enough translators that they can now use kinder and gentler tactics. Raids will no longer rely as much on brute force, but  use interpreters knocking on doors, telling the people in a building that a search will take place. In more cases, Iraqi police are used as part of the raiding party, to help with crowd control. In some neighborhoods and towns, American troops have been withdrawn, leaving security to Iraqi police and local officials. 

 

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