From the New Duranty Times, “Violence Surges Across Iraq With 30 New Deaths Reported”
BAGHDAD, Iraq – The surge of violence that has swept Iraq since its first elected government took office nearly a month ago continued Saturday, with at least 30 new deaths reported across the country, some of them in what appeared to be sectarian killings.
The latest attacks raised the total number of Iraqis killed this month to about 650, in addition to at least 63 American troops who have been killed, the highest American toll since January.
In two of the worst incidents reported Saturday, three suicide bombers tried to blast into a base shared by American and Iraqi troops at Sinjar, 40 miles from the northwestern border with Syria, killing at least one Iraqi border policeman and wounding at least 18 others, including 15 civilians.
Farther south along the Syrian border, in the Sunni Arab city of Qaim, a police commander confirmed the killing in recent days of 10 Shiite pilgrims returning from a shrine in Syria, The Associated Press reported.
According to officers with the Army’s Third Armored Cavalry, which oversees the area west of Mosul, the attack at Sinjar began at 8.20 a.m., when an Opel sedan approached the base at high speed, and Iraqi forces shot the driver. As the car exploded, a second suicide bomber raced forward in a truck, came under Iraqi fire and detonated. A third vehicle then tried to ram a walk-through gate, the officers said, but the driver detonated under fire.
In other attacks, two Sunni Arab tribal leaders, one in Baghdad and the other in the northern city of Kirkuk, were killed Friday, according to police reports. In the Kirkuk killing, local officials suggested that the victim, Sheik Sabhan Khalaf al-Jibouri, might have been a target because of his attempt to have friendly relations with Kurdish leaders…
Just weeks into its tenure, the government of Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari has been shaken by the level of violence, which has soared to levels not seen since before the elections in January. The government has announced a major security crackdown in Baghdad, which aides said they expect to begin on Sunday, with up to 40,000 Iraqi troops deployed and 600 checkpoints set up in an attempt to sweep up suicide-bombing cells and other insurgents…