For the forth time in a month, a mixed battalion of American and Iraqi troops conducted raids on terrorist hideouts in western Iraq. These raids, and the ongoing (since May) operations in Baghdad, have cut the number of suicide bomb attacks in Baghdad in half. Over a thousand terrorist suspects have been arrested, and several hundred killed or wounded when they resisted with force. Increased cooperation from Sunni Arabs in western Iraq, and in Baghdad, is resulting in more suicide bombers getting caught, and bomb workshops, and cars rigged with explosives, getting seized. The American plan is to continue with these operations, using more and more Iraqi troops and police, until the terrorists are worn down to practically nothing. The number of police and troops increases each week. By the end of the Summer, the government expects to see a downward trend in terrorist violence.
Sunni Arab leaders are openly calling on their followers to vote, and get involved in writing the constitution and fighting terrorism. This is a pretty bold move, because the terrorists have been known to kidnap or kill Sunni Arab leaders who oppose them. Al Qaeda is particularly nasty to Sunni Arabs, Iraqi or foreign, who appear to be cooperating with the Iraqi government (which is now dominated by Shia Arabs, who are 60 percent of Iraq's population.) This was why three Sunni Arab diplomats were recently attacked. Iraqi Sunni Arabs expect their fellow Sunnis to support their terror campaign, not to help a Shia dominated government.
Meanwhile, Sunni religious bigots were enraged when the government agreed to form a joint organization with Iran to share information on terrorism. Sunni Arab terrorism, at least. Islamic conservatives in Iran still support Shia terrorism, particularly the Hizbollah organization in Lebanon. Iran has also offered to help train Iraqi soldiers, which scares Sunni Arabs throughout the region. Their worst nightmare is a Iran-Iraq coalition dominating the Persian Gulf, militarily, politically and economically.