As the US and UK governments gear up for their next Middle Eastern war - most favoured venue, Iran – a reminder of the continuing bloody disaster we unleashed on Iraq. On the 9th anniversary of the invasion, at least 30 people have been killed in a series of bombings in the country.
Two car bombs in the mainly Shia city of Karbala are said to have killed at least 13 people, while another in the northern city of Kirkuk caused the deaths of at least seven. A pregnant woman died in Fallujah.
Bombings are now part of the daily pattern of life in Iraq. In January, a suicide bomber killed 53 people in an attack on Shi’ite pilgrims in Basra in the south. Then a few days later another suicide bomber killed 31 mourners at a Shi’ite funeral in Baghdad.
Nearly 5,000 soldiers in the invading armies were killed, but we have no real idea of the number of Iraqi civilians who have paid with their lives. Few now contest that it is well over 100,000, but we will probably never know the true number because, as Nikita Khrushchev said of the authorities’ indifference to those who died in the great Soviet famine of 1932-3: ‘no one was counting.’