Iraqi bombings


On November 24, three bombs were detonated in the Baab al-Sharqi area of central Baghdad, killing several people and wounding many others. According to Al Jazeera, New Delhi TV, and The Star (Malaysia) these bombings raise the issue of Iraqi security after the US Troop removal by the end of the year deadline.

Most of the casualties from these explosions came from the final blast in a staggered pattern. After the first explosion and second explosion, police and other security personnel moved in to help the injured, and were then injured themselves in the third blast. Since the security forces and police took the biggest loss in these blasts, people are not blaming them (at least not directly) for these blasts.

NDTV indicates that this could be the work of Sunni extremists or Shi’a militants. No claim has been made on these attacks by any group as of yet, so this is purely speculation though Al Jazeera points out that the area that was attacked is primarily home to Shia residents and vendors. NDTV also points out that the area near the blasts is a Shi’ite stronghold.

Both the Star and Al Jazeera also make mention of another roadside bomb that hit a minibus (or truck) full of construction workers near Abu Gharib that was heading towards the capital.

All three of these sources clearly point out that the Iraqi security forces will have a difficult time covering the holes left by the US troops as they evacuate the country in the next month, and raise questions as to how secure the nation will be in the year to come. I think that NDTV gives the most in-depth review of the situation, whilst Al Jazeera simply offers a sampling of information, just enough to say that they covered the situation. The Star provides a little bit of a different insight from the Malaysian perspective, and definitely takes jabs at the incompetence of Iraqi defense capabilities.

No one will know exactly what the situation is until after the troops leave at year’s end, but I think it is safe to say that the Iraqis have a long way to go yet on their road to true independence.


About middleeastcommentary

As an Associate Professor in Electronic Media Communication at Middle Tennessee State University, I teach courses in Media in the Middle East, among other courses analyzing media. I also produce media -- a recent documentary on the Kurds of Northern Iraq "More than the Mountains: Kurdistan of Iraq" produced following two trips to Iraq in 2005 and 2008.
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3 Responses to Iraqi bombings

  1. Timothy, It is interesting that the New Delhi TV account mentions the presence/ context of the ‘asset’ in that area which is most interesting to outside interests — oil. They say “Basra is about 340 miles (550 kilometers) southeast of Baghdad It is considered the center of Iraq’s burgeoning oil sector.
    Many foreign oil companies have offices there. The country is relying on foreign companies to bring the money and expertise needed to develop Iraq’s vast oil sector, which has been ravaged by war, sanctions and neglect.”

  2. Megan Bryan says:

    I think it is very interesting that you used a news source from Malayasia (although from Reuters)! I think it always good to get another perspective other than the Westernized news sources that always seem to be more biased.

    However, I do think you are right in suggesting that The Star suggests that the Iraqi defense may be incompetent. I agree with your conclusion that the Iraqi people have a long road to travel down before they reach any form of true independence, whether the American troops leave at the end of the year or not. I think the topic of the Iraqi people gaining their independence is an interesting and important one, and one that needs to be followed closely.

    Megan Bryan

  3. Mike Gruber says:

    I recently found an article written by Ahmed Kadhum Fahad that actually suggests that Iraq is capable of holding their own after the US withdrawals from the country. He states at the end of his article: “Currently considered one of the most stable countries in the region following the Arab Spring, Iraqis must seize this golden opportunity and foster a fully independent country and a new cooperative relationship with the United States.”

    Obviously he has high hopes for the country, though he is not without his doubts. He suggests Iraq needs to help rebuild itself by cooperating with US businesses on three different levels: diplomatic, educational, and economic cooperation. He suggests Iraq needs to take advantage of exchange programs that have been made available through the US Embassy to help educate citizens from both countries to better understand each other. Economically, Iraq has the opportunity to establish numerous exchanges with US companies through the Baghdad International Fair, which focuses a lot on showcasing US products to the region. Instead of trying to simply rebuild themselves from the ground up, he suggests taking advantage of business opportunities from America to aid them. “Iraqi infrastructure has been deteriorating since 1980 as a result of a number of wars. It is now high time for American companies to contribute to its rebuilding.”

    I certainly hope the Iraqi people can establish themselves a stable, peaceful government and infrastructure. Hopefully, if they do take advantage of the business opportunities this author is suggesting, we don’t end up sweeping across their country with our products and economically take them over like we sometimes do. I want to see a healthy exchange of culture and products, not a take-over.

    ~Mike Gruber

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