More than 100 people were wounded in at least eight blasts, one of which was near the "Green Zone" diplomatic complex, part of a wave of bloodshed that has taken the monthly death toll in Iraq to the highest levels in five years.
"Iraq's streets have become a battleground for sectarian people who are motivated by hatred and religious edicts and daring to kill innocent people," the Interior Ministry said in an unusually frank statement.
The international community, particularly the US, is watching Iraq's violence with growing concern as it merges with the fighting happening next door in Syria, where Al Qaeda-linked groups are now openly fighting alongside the Syrian rebels against the Assad regime. Al Qaeda in Iraq leader Abu Bakr Al Baghdadi is now believed to be in Syria
“This is a regional conflict that stretches from Beirut to Damascus to Baghdad,” Army General Martin Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said of the Syrian civil war on Monday in Israel. “It is the unleashing of historic ethnic, religious and tribal animosities that will take a great deal of work and a great deal of time to resolve.”
Baghdad? The capital of the nation the U.S. recently fought to liberate? Attacking a single country riven by sectarian battles that spill over its borders can be likened to taking a swat at a hornets’ nest and irritating those inside. Or akin to spreading cancer by operating to excise it.
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