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Old 07-21-2003, 07:41 PM   #1
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New Death of Soldier In Iraq Piles Pressure on U.S.

New Death of Soldier in Iraq Piles Pressure on U.S.

Updated 4:44 PM ET July 21, 2003


By Alastair Macdonald

BAGHDAD, Iraq (Reuters) - A U.S. soldier and an Iraqi interpreter were killed in an attack in Baghdad Monday, adding to an almost daily toll of casualties that is putting pressure on Washington to scale back its role in Iraq.

They died as Iraq's week-old self-rule body again failed to resolve the basic issue of who will lead the U.S.-appointed Governing Council. With many Iraqis also keen to be rid of the occupying forces and rule themselves now that Saddam Hussein is gone, the Council seems to many to be making slow progress.

An Arab television channel aired comments by masked gunmen who claimed attacks on Americans were an Islamic holy war and not, as U.S. officials say, the work of Saddam loyalists.

The U.S. military said the soldier from the 1st Armored Division and the interpreter were killed when their vehicle hit an improvised mine on a Baghdad highway and they then came under fire. Three other soldiers were wounded.

A local journalist watched as one U.S. military vehicle blew up in broad daylight. A Reuters photographer later saw two burned out Humvee vehicles, 100 yards apart, apparently the aftermath of the fatal incident, north of the city center.

Five U.S. soldiers, as well as the interpreter and an Iraqi driver for the United Nations, have been killed since Friday, meaning 38 Americans have died at enemy hands since May 1, when President Bush declared an end to major combat.

A U.S. military spokeswoman said an armored patrol in the restive town of Ramadi, west of Baghdad, was also hit by two improvised bombs and that two soldiers were wounded.

Bush's man in Iraq, Paul Bremer, said in Washington on Sunday that the attacks were the work of "professional killers" loyal to Saddam and that U.S. forces would arm Iraqis to help fight them. Recruiting for a new Iraqi army began at the weekend. Bremer said Saddam was probably still hiding in Iraq.

MASKED GUNMEN

But a man with his face swathed in an Arab head-dress told Abu Dhabi television Saddam was not responsible.

"They are all waged in the name of God, none of them have any relation to the former regime ... All Iraqis have been harmed by the former regime," he said, standing in a group of about 10 masked men, some carrying rifles.

"America and its allies say they have tanks, they have warplanes, they have technology. We have something stronger than all of this. We have God supporting us."

In recent weeks, many groups -- some saying they are Saddam loyalists and one claiming links to the militant al Qaeda network of Osama bin Laden -- have claimed attacks on troops.

"KEEP OUT"

Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz, seen as one of the architects of the war, cautioned neighboring states and foreign Muslim fighters to stay out of Iraq and said the American presence would benefit the whole Middle East.

"Our success will have a positive influence not just on Iraq but on the whole region," he said in Mosul, northern Iraq. "Some people are afraid of that influence and they are targeting us."

But Bush's domestic critics are calling for signs of a rapid strategy that will let the troops come home and leave behind the stable, democratic Iraq that the invaders promised.

"We have 60 to 90 days to get things straightened out," Joseph Biden, the senior Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said Sunday.

U.S. commanders have warned that it may be several months before they can lower their troop strength from 148,000.

With exceptions like Britain, which is running the southern city of Basra, few of the United States' allies have been willing to answer Washington's calls for help in Iraq. Some, like France and India, who opposed the March invasion, want to see a clear U.N. framework before getting involved.

Nor is there much sign that the Governing Council is close to taking on major responsibilities from the Americans.

The 25 members, many of them returned exiles with limited contacts among the local population and drawn from disparate and often fractious religious and ethnic communities, are still discussing ways of rotating the presidency among themselves.

An adviser to one of the Kurdish parties on the Council said a five-hour meeting Monday failed to resolve the issue of leadership. That means they are still some way from the sharing out of ministerial-style portfolios that would mark a real start to Iraqis taking back control of public services. (Additional reporting by Cynthia Johnston, Huda Majeed Saleh and Oleg Popov)
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Old 07-21-2003, 07:46 PM   #2
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Old 07-22-2003, 06:45 AM   #3
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And another one was killed today

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/3086437.stm

Quote:
One US soldier has been killed and another injured in an ambush along a road north of Baghdad, the US military has said.

Their convoy was hit with a rocket-propelled grenade and small arms fire.

The attack happened at about 0900 (0500 GMT) in a mainly Sunni Muslim area traditionally loyal to ousted Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein.

The soldier's death brought to 153 the number of US troops killed in action since the war began in March - six more than during the 1991 Gulf War.

On Monday, a US soldier and an Iraqi translator were killed in an attack, also within the so-called "Sunni triangle".
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Old 07-22-2003, 11:50 AM   #4
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I sure am getting tired of all of these killings.
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Old 07-23-2003, 06:55 AM   #5
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Quote:
BBC News
...Hopes that the news (comment: the deaths of Uday and Qusay Hussein) would sap the morale of those launching attacks on US forces in Iraq received an early blow on Wednesday morning when two US soldiers were killed and eight injured in two separate incidents.

Two military convoys - one near Mosul, the other just outside the town of Ramadi, west of Baghdad - were hit by what the US military described as "improvised explosive devices"...


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Old 07-23-2003, 10:32 AM   #6
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If some of these anti-American forces aren't connected with Saddam, but rather with some Islamic radical group or whatever, the death of Saddam's sons isn't going to impact on what they do. They're going to keep killing U.S. soldiers as long as they're there.
Ugh.
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Old 07-23-2003, 10:54 AM   #7
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verte76:

Right - if it is from any radical islamic group i guess they will cheer too that the 2 sons of Hussein are out of their way
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Old 07-24-2003, 04:55 AM   #8
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again

Quote:
from
BBC News

Three American soldiers have been killed in Iraq, a US military spokesman has said.

..

Since 1 May, when President George W Bush declared that major combat was over, US Central Command has reported the deaths of 80 American service personnel in Iraq.

More than 40 of the dead were killed in fighting, usually in ambushes.
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Old 07-24-2003, 11:25 AM   #9
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Now people are screaming over "the betrayal" of Saddam's sons. I saw something to this effect in the Arab Daily Headlines, which are *not* written by Islamic extremists. I wonder if the reaction would be different if they'd been captured alive. Some Iraqi in Baghdad was a bit miffed because he said he'd wanted to torture Uday first. Geez.........
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