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U.S.: Iraqi insurgent attacks intensifying
AP via Yahoo ^ | March 8, 2007 | LAUREN FRAYER

Posted on 03/08/2007 4:19:09 AM PST by Steel Wolf

BAGHDAD, Iraq - Insurgents have sought to intensify attacks during a Baghdad security crackdown and additional U.S. forces will be sent to areas outside the capital where militant groups are regrouping, the new commander of U.S. forces in Iraq said Thursday.

U.S. Gen. David Petraeus said the troop buildups outside Baghdad will focus on Diyala province northeast of Baghdad, a growing hotbed for suspected Sunni extremists fleeing the U.S.-Iraqi security operation in Baghdad.

But Petraeus stressed that military force alone is "not sufficient" to end the violence in Iraq and political talks must eventually include some militant groups now opposing the U.S.-backed government.

"This is critical," Petraeus said in his first news conference since taking over command last month. He noted that such political negotiations "will determine in the long run the success of this effort."

Petraeus listed a series of high-profile attacks since U.S. and Iraqi forces began the security sweep three weeks ago, including a suicide blast at a mostly Shiite university and an assassination attempt against one of Iraq's vice presidents.

The Pentagon has pledged 17,500 combat troops to the capital. Petraeus has said the full contingent should not be in place until early June. He declined to say how many U.S. forces will be deployed to Diyala, which the group al-Qaida in Iraq has made one its main staging grounds.

Military officials believe many insurgents have shifted from Baghdad to Diyala to escape the security operation.

"Car bombs have targeted hundreds of Iraqis," Petraeus said. He also denounced the wave of other attacks, including the "thugs with no soul" who have killed more than 150 Shiite pilgrims in the past three days.


(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: baghdad; baghdadsurge; iraq; iraqsurge; petraeus; surge
Thugs with no souls is right. Also, Gen Petraeus has some interesting comments on the developments there.
1 posted on 03/08/2007 4:19:10 AM PST by Steel Wolf
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To: Steel Wolf

Then we must be doing something right.

2 posted on 03/08/2007 4:22:48 AM PST by mtbopfuyn (I think the border is kind of an artificial barrier - San Antonio councilwoman Patti Radle)
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To: Steel Wolf

Here's some more:

General David Petraeus, in his first news conference in Baghdad since he took command last month, also said he saw no immediate need to request more U.S. troops, but reinforcements already requested would likely stay "well beyond the summer."

"There is no military solution to a problem like that in Iraq, to the insurgency of Iraq," Petraeus said.

"Military action is necessary to help improve security ... but it is not sufficient."

He said political progress would require talking to and reconciling with "some of those who have felt the new Iraq did not have a place for them."

3 posted on 03/08/2007 4:27:32 AM PST by corlorde (New Hampshire)
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To: mtbopfuyn

We are, and the insurgents are desperate. This sentiment is causing them to make more and more mistakes; the number 1 rule of guerilla warfare is to avoid alienating the population. Attacking them tends to do that...

4 posted on 03/08/2007 4:40:29 AM PST by glennshepard (Semper Fi, Beat Army)
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To: mtbopfuyn
re: Then we must be doing something right

You can say that again! Remember just a few weeks ago the MSM/Lefties were telling us the insurgency would simply melt into the general population, lie low until we tired of being there, and then re-emerge to wreak havoc.

The insurgents know full well that if the people ever get an honest chance to enjoy the fruits of overthrowing Saddam and his thugs they will never let the clock be turned back.

The one thing Iraq has lacked since the invasion has been the security to rebuild itself and let a new government take hold.

Looks to me like we're on the right track. It could change again, but for now I think we've got them on the run. Some of insurgent factions are stepping up their attacks because they know The Surge will affect them adversely, and the ones who are simply fading into the woodwork will find no supporters when they try coming out of hiding.
5 posted on 03/08/2007 6:09:22 AM PST by jwparkerjr
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To: corlorde

I know, there is no military solution to Iraq. We were just supposed to buy them time to get the political solution up and running. There's still a lot of hope out there for Gen Petraeus to save the day. At best, he can just keep buying time for the Iraqi political process to jump start itself, a fact that he appears to be well aware of.

6 posted on 03/08/2007 6:40:22 AM PST by Steel Wolf (If every Republican is a RINO, then no Republican is a RINO.)
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To: Steel Wolf
if alawi gets in with a new coalition he just might be the strong man to secure peace. malaki's time may be up in terms of his strength for unification and sadr won't have his man on the scene pulling strings for shittes.

still, with every poltical change there will be new problems and perhaps the worse would be having too strong of a leader... like alawi becoming the next saddam.
7 posted on 03/08/2007 8:00:02 AM PST by Blind Eye Jones
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