Sunday, January 30, 2005
Iraq's Security-challenged Provinces
Denis D. Gray of AP notes: "However, at least six provinces – Baghdad, Anbar, Diyala, Salahuddin, Kirkuk and Nineveh – have been the scene of significant attacks on U.S. troops and Iraqi authorities in the past month. The only areas not plagued by bloodshed are the three northern provinces controlled by Kurds. The situation in many areas, however, is unknown since journalists' travel is restricted by security fears."
Juan Cole observes the situation is "even worse than Gray allows. As recently as August, the British expended 100,000 rounds of ammunition in Maysan province at Amara, saying they had the most intense fighting since the Korean War! Likewise there was heavy fighting in Wasit (Kut) and Najaf."
In the map below, we see security-challenged provinces are in red, and those that saw recent heavy fighting are purple. I ask you if this looks like the problems are in "three of 18 provinces," or whether it looks to you like elections held only in the white areas (as Donald Rumsfeld seems to envision) would produce a legitimate government:
Iraq Elections a Disaster in the Making
by Juan Cole
AntiWar.com, September 25, 2004
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