Monday, February 11, 2008
Bombs, Gunmen Kill as Many as 53 in Iraq
Car bombs and gunmen struck new U.S. allies, police and civilians Sunday in northern Iraq, killing as many as 53 people. The attacks came even as the American military released a captured diary and another document they say show that al-Qaida in Iraq is cracking under a Sunni revolt against its brutal tactics. The violence coincided with a visit by Defense Secretary Robert Gates to Baghdad, where he warned that hard choices face Iraq's political leaders on how to stabilize the country despite promising new signs of progress toward reconciliation. The deadliest bombing on Sunday was near Balad, 50 miles north of Baghdad, against a checkpoint manned jointly by Iraqi police and members of an awakening group.