Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Years Later, Iraq Is Still Ruined

Really wonder how those who brought us this horror can sleep at night:
(Reuters) - Thousands of civilians have fled Falluja since last week after the Iraqi military intensified shelling in a new bid to crush a five-month old Sunni uprising, killing scores of people in what residents describe as massive indiscriminate bombardment.

The mortars, artillery and what residents call "barrel bombs" rained for at least seven days on Falluja - a city that was the nemesis of U.S. troops a decade ago and is now the main battle ground in a war pitting the Shi'ite-led government against rebellious Sunni tribal chiefs and an al Qaeda offshoot.

More than 420,000 people have already escaped the two main cities of western Anbar province, Falluja and Ramadi, in fighting since the start of the year. Residents say the new pounding of Falluja's residential neighborhoods appears aimed at driving out all remaining civilians in preparation for an all-out assault to defeat armed groups once and for all.

Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, who is trying to cobble together a coalition to keep himself in office for a third term after an April 30 parliamentary election, has vowed to destroy fighters who seized parts of Anbar province last year.

The mainly Sunni desert province borders on Syria, and many of the fighters belong to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), an al Qaeda offshoot waging war and holding territory on both sides of the frontier.

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