Iraq: June 25, 2004

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In the last 24 hours, several hundred armed men made attacks against government police and security forces in the cities of Baghdad, Baquba, Ramadi, Fallujah, Mosul and Mahaweel. Over a hundred Iraqis, and three Americans died, over 300 people were injured. This was the long anticipated "big offensive" by the Baath Party and al Qaeda forces to topple the interim Iraqi government and stop the elections planned for early next year. Five car bombs also went off in Mosul. All the attacks occurred in Sunni Arab areas.

The interim government wants to put the Sunni areas under martial law after July 1st. But the government will need American troops to make this work. Although Iraqi security forces stood and fought against the attacks of the last 24 hours, the Iraqi army does not have the capability of going after the various militias without taking heavy casualties.

 

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