Iraq Just Had Its Deadliest Month in Five Years

Civilians and security forces gather at the scene of a car bomb in the southern Shiite city of Karbala, 50 miles south of Baghdad on Monday. Civilians and security forces gather at the scene of a car bomb in the southern Shiite city of Karbala, 50 miles south of Baghdad on Monday. AP

American troops may have finally left Iraq, but for that nation's citizens the war is only getting worse. More than 700 people, mostly civilians, were killed in violent attacks last month, making it the deadliest calendar month since June 2008. Nearly all of those killed were attacked in the capital of Baghdad.

The sectarian violence between Sunni and Shia Muslims has escalated in recent months, and the minority Sunnis have turned up the protests of the Shia-led government -- leading to violent confrontations with police. Local elections in the middle of April contributed to the violence, as deadly car bombings became almost routine in Iraq's major cities, and the government has been powerless to to stop the resurgence of al-Qaeda in Iraq, which is believed to be behind the majority of attacks.

The sudden spike in attacks has also raised fears of a new civil war, as sectarian groups lacking the buffer (and useful targets) of American forces turn their anger and frustration against each other. The Sunnis, who dominated government positions for so many years, have been marganalzied on the government of Shia prime minister Nuri al-Maliki.

May has not gotten off to a great start either. Twenty-two people were killed in mulitple attacks on Wednesday, including a gun assault on a police station that killed five officers.

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
FROM OUR SPONSORS
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Going Agile:Revolutionizing Federal Digital Services Delivery

    Here’s one indication that times have changed: Harriet Tubman is going to be the next face of the twenty dollar bill. Another sign of change? The way in which the federal government arrived at that decision.

    Download
  • Cyber Risk Report: Cybercrime Trends from 2016

    In our first half 2016 cyber trends report, SurfWatch Labs threat intelligence analysts noted one key theme – the interconnected nature of cybercrime – and the second half of the year saw organizations continuing to struggle with that reality. The number of potential cyber threats, the pool of already compromised information, and the ease of finding increasingly sophisticated cybercriminal tools continued to snowball throughout the year.

    Download
  • Featured Content from RSA Conference: Dissed by NIST

    Learn more about the latest draft of the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology guidance document on authentication and lifecycle management.

    Download
  • GBC Issue Brief: The Future of 9-1-1

    A Look Into the Next Generation of Emergency Services

    Download
  • GBC Survey Report: Securing the Perimeters

    A candid survey on cybersecurity in state and local governments

    Download
  • The New IP: Moving Government Agencies Toward the Network of The Future

    Federal IT managers are looking to modernize legacy network infrastructures that are taxed by growing demands from mobile devices, video, vast amounts of data, and more. This issue brief discusses the federal government network landscape, as well as market, financial force drivers for network modernization.

    Download
  • eBook: State & Local Cybersecurity

    CenturyLink is committed to helping state and local governments meet their cybersecurity challenges. Towards that end, CenturyLink commissioned a study from the Government Business Council that looked at the perceptions, attitudes and experiences of state and local leaders around the cybersecurity issue. The results were surprising in a number of ways. Learn more about their findings and the ways in which state and local governments can combat cybersecurity threats with this eBook.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.