BAGHDAD, Iraq - Insurgents launched multiple attacks on Iraqi police across the dangerous Sunni Triangle on Tuesday, killing 24 people — including 19 policemen — a day after the major Sunni Muslim political party pulled out of the Jan. 30 elections citing the deteriorating security situation.
Also Tuesday, a militant group claimed to have executed eight Iraqi employees of the Sandi Group, American security company, saying they had supported the U.S.-led occupation.
Twelve policemen died when gunmen attacked a station 12 miles south of Tikrit, Saddam Hussein (news - web sites)'s hometown, said Arkan Mohammed, a local government official.
A car bomb killed five Iraqi National Guardsmen and injured 26 near Baqouba, a town 35 miles northeast of Baghdad, after the paramilitary troops had cordoned off an area in order to disarm a roadside bomb, said Maj. Neal O'Brien.
In Baqouba itself, unidentified gunmen assassinated Capt. Na'em Muhanad Abdullah, a local police commander, and wounded three other men, a spokesman said.
Elsewhere Tuesday, a car bomb exploded in the village of Muradiya, 18 miles northeast of Baghdad, killing five civilians and wounding dozens, said Dr. Ahmed Fouad of the Baqouba General Hospital.
In Mosul, 225 miles northwest of Baghdad, a gunman attacked a police station in the northeastern Hadbaa district, said police Capt. Ahmed Khalil. One policeman died in the attack.
Earlier this year, before the insurgency really took hold, it seemed wildly improbable that meaningful elections could be held in January. Now it seems a fool's errand. The major Sunni party thinks so as well as it is pulling out of the elections.
In another blow to plans to hold the ballot as scheduled, the largest Sunni political group withdrew from the race Monday, only hours after a suicide car bomber killed 15 people in Baghdad in an attempt to assassinate the head of Iraq (news - web sites)'s strongest Shiite party.
Can't you just hear the sanctimonious blather of the motherfuckers that started this mess? Accompanied by John Ashcroft singing his victory hymn "Let the Eagle Soar!" Anyone for a hasty retreat?