Another gruesome day as alienated Sunni/al Qaeda terrorists (or mere nihilists) killed more than 70 people in 15 coordinated blasts, injuring up to 300. The attempt to reignite sectarian war is real:
Tonight's bombs all detonated within 90 minutes of each other. Hospitals were appealing for blood donors, and the city's main A&E centres were reporting large numbers of casualties amid chaotic scenes.
The bombs exploded in 12 areas of the city, including a police station in Sadr City and a coffee shop in New Baghdad. Restaurants appeared to be prominent targets in other attacks, along with main roads and, in one case, a funeral tent.
The scale of the attacks and the ease with which car bombs were, yet again, able to penetrate security cordons constitute a damaging blow for Iraq's security forces, which have remained without effective leadership for eight months owing to the crippling political crisis that has seen politicians unable to form a government.
The NYT says the targets were varied:
The bombings tore across lines of sect and class, striking poor Shiite neighborhoods, a Sunni mosque, a crowded restaurant in the north of the city and middle-class shopping areas. “I tried to escape, but there was chaos,” said Mustafa Mohammed Saleh, a dentist who was leaving his office in the Shiite enclave of Bayaa when he saw four explosions that scattered bodies into the street. “You see what happens: The most secure part of Baghdad, they hit.” “Tension,” he added, “is in the air.”