Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Musings On Iraq Security Report For Feb. 8-16, 2014

 
The second quarter of February 2014 was just as violent as the first, but there was a large drop in casualties. The number of dead and wounded went down by around one-quarter from the first seven days of the month, but that was not from a lack of trying as the number of attacks went up slightly. Baghdad, Salahaddin, Anbar, and Ninewa accounted for the vast majority of security incidents, while there were only a few in Tamim, Diyala, Babil, Dhi Qar, Karbala, and Wasit. Overall, February is stacking up to be just as deadly as the previous months.

There were 227 attacks reported in the press from February 8-14. That averaged out to 32.4 per day, up from 204 and 29.1 for the first seven days of the month. Baghdad, 47 security incidents, Salahaddin, 46, Anbar, 45, and Ninewa, 36, were the most violent in the second quarter of February. 16 attacks in Babil, 12 in Diyala, and one each in Dhi Qar, Karbala, and Wasit followed that. There were 116 bombings compared to 91 shootings. That included 10 suicide bombers and 9 car bombs. The latter usually account for the most casualties. That was a decided decrease from the beginning of February when there were 32 car bombs and 17 suicide bombers. That was a likely reason why there were fewer casualties in the second quarter compared to the first.


Security Incidents and Casualties Feb. 1-14, 2014
Date
Attacks
Dead
Wounded
2/1/14
36
35
94
2/2/14
28
28
28
2/3/14
32
54
116
2/4/14
21
20
77
2/5/15
34
89
169
2/6/15
35
50
162
2/7/15
18
20
54
TOTALS
204
296
700
2/8/14
36
36
70
2/9/14
36
36
56
2/10/14
33
41
96
2/11/14
31
28
93
2/12/14
35
36
71
2/13/14
36
45
76
2/14/14
20
33
39
TOTALS
227
255
501

Breakdown of Violence In Iraq, Feb. 1-7 vs. Feb. 8-14, 2014

Feb. 1-7
Feb. 8-14
Attacks
204
227
Deaths
296
255
ISF Deaths
88 + 12 Sahwa
127 + 15 Sahwa
Civilian Deaths
196
113
Wounded
700
501
ISF Wounded
185 + 43 Sahwa
175 + 22 Sahwa
Civilian Wounded
427
303
Gunfire
94
93
Bombs
101
116
Car Bombs
32
9
Suicide Bombers
17
10


For the second quarter there were 255 deaths and 501 wounded. That was made up of 127 members of the Iraqi Security Forces (ISF), 113 civilians and 15 members of the Awakening/Sons of Iraq (Sahwa) killed, and 303 civilians, 175 ISF, 22 Sahwa and 1 Peshmerga injured. Baghdad did not have the most deaths for a change. That was taken by Anbar with 55 dead, followed by 50 in Baghdad, 49 in Salahaddin, 38 in Ninewa, 33 in Babil, 14 in Tamim, 12 in Diyala, 2 in Wasit, and one each in Dhi Qar and Karbala. Those figures were roughly followed by the number injured at 131 in Anbar, 129 in Baghdad, 84 in Salahaddin, 70 in Babil, 36 in Ninewa, 28 in Diyala, 19 in Tamim, and four in Dhi Qar. Those figures averaged out to 36.4 killed per day and 71.5 injured. Those were huge numbers, but unfortunately the norm in Iraq today.


Security Incidents By Province, Feb. 8-14, 2014

Attacks
Deaths
ISF
Civilians
Wounded
ISF
Civilians
Gunfire
Bombs
Anbar
45
55
34
21
131
29
100
21
11
Babil
16
33
29
4
70
63
7
6
13
Baghdad
47
50
9
32
129
27
92
20
22
Basra
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Dhi Qar
1
1
0
1
4
0
4
0
1
Diyala
12
12
0
12
28
1
27
6
9
Karbala
1
1
1
0
0
0
0
0
1
Maysan
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Muthanna
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Ninewa
36
38
25
13
36
19
17
20
27
Qadisiyah
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Salahaddin
49
50
22
24
84
23
51
11
34
Tamim
20
14
9
3
19
13
5
8
11
Wasit
1
2
0
2
0
0
0
1
0


The fighting in Anbar made it the most violence place in Iraq in the second week. The 45 security incidents left a total of 186 casualties. This was a mix of both fighting with insurgents, militant attacks, and indiscriminate shelling by the government. February 11 was the worst day when there were 10 security incidents leading to 11 dead and 45 wounded. That included suicide bombers in Ramadi, Khalidiya, and in Habaniya on a bridge, as well as 3 bombing of police stations in Albu Assaf, Albu Diab, and another town outside of Ramadi. Government shelling and mortar fire left 6 dead and 35 wounded in Fallujah, which was the worst incident of the day. There were several smaller attacks as well. In comparison, on February 8 there were only 3 attacks with one soldier injured in Albu Bali. Despite repeated claims by Baghdad and locals in Anbar that the province is generally secure with the exception of Fallujah, Ramadi saw the most attacks for the quarter at 14, followed by 4 in Saqlawiya, and two each in Albu Diab, Habaniya, and Khalidiya along with nine other locations. That shows that violence is still widespread in and around the province’s major cities. The fact that there were six suicide bombers there as well shows that the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) is concentrating its resources there as these are major weapons of the organization to carry out targeted attacks. Until the urban areas are cleared of insurgents this will likely be the norm for Anbar.


Security Incidents And Casualties Anbar Feb. 8-14, 2014
Date
Attacks
Dead
Wounded
2/8/14
3
0
1
2/9/14
6
8
11
2/10/14
4
9
27
2/11/14
10
11
45
2/12/14
3
6
13
2/13/14
13
10
19
2/14/14
6
11
15
TOTALS
45
55
131


Baghdad was next with its 47 security incidents leading to 179 casualties. There were an average of 6.7 attacks in the province with February 13 being the worse. That day two bombs went off in the Shorja market leaving 9 fatalities and 27 wounded. That was the deadliest incident of the quarter. There were five car bombs as well, one in Sadr City and another in Mahmudiya on February 9, another on February 10 in Bab al-Muadham, and the last two near the Diyala Bridge in Tarmiya and one in Shaab on February 12. All together those left 6 dead and 28 wounded. Otherwise most of the other attacks were decidedly smaller such as two Sahwa being killed and two more wounded by a roadside bomb on their patrol in Radwaniya on February 8, three bodies being found, made up of two Sahwa and one policeman in Tarmiya on February 9, and two police wounded when their car was blown up by a sticky bomb in Mahmudiya on February 14. Insurgents appeared to be trying to re-establish themselves in Abu Ghraib, which is to the west of the capital city where there were four attacks. ISIS also continued to target Shiite areas such as Sadr City and Shaab in eastern Baghdad that received a total of 7 attacks. Baghdad did not have half as many car and suicide bombers as it did during the first part of February, 5 compared to 29. That accounts for why deaths dropped from 148 to 50 and injured went from 347 to 129. It appeared that the second week of February was one of those times when ISIS was reloading.


Security Incidents And Casualties Baghdad Feb. 8-14, 2014
Date
Attacks
Dead
Wounded
2/8/14
4
4
6
2/9/14
9
12
20
2/10/14
10
4
35
2/11/14
6
6
16
2/12/14
9
7
17
2/13/14
5
12
28
2/14/14
4
5
7
TOTALS
47
50
129


Salahaddin had just around the same levels of violence as Anbar and Baghdad did during this period. The 49 reported attacks left 134 casualties. Unlike previous months civilians were the major casualties in the province instead of the security forces. 24 of the 50 killed were civilians, while 51 of the 84 wounded were as well. There were no real mass casualties bombings in Salahaddin. Most were small and many were targeted. On February 8 for instance, a sticky bomb went off in a car killing a police intelligence officer, his driver, and wounding five bystanders. Shirqat in the north and Tuz Kharmato in the east were hit the most with 13 attacks each. There were ten or more attacks in three of the seven days during the quarter on February 8, 9, and 12. Salahaddin is one of two provinces where security incidents have picked up in recent weeks.


Security Incidents And Casualties Salahaddin Feb. 8-14, 2014
Date
Attacks
Dead
Wounded
2/8/14
12
23
14
2/9/14
10
9
15
2/10/14
5
3
11
2/11/14
2
0
3
2/12/14
11
7
32
2/13/14
3
2
2
2/14/14
6
6
7
TOTALS
49
50
84


There were almost the same number of attacks and deaths in Ninewa from February 8-14, but the number of wounded dropped dramatically. There were 36 security incidents leading to 38 killed and 36 wounded. That was down from 94 injured from the beginning of the month. February 10 was the worst day with 7 attacks, 20 killed, and 14 wounded. Most of the casualties occurred in Ain Jahash when insurgents killed and beheaded 15 soldiers. All the other attacks were much smaller such as the shooting and killing of a soldier in Mosul on February 8, a roadside bomb that left one policeman dead and two wounded in Mishahda on February 11, and a policeman being gunned down in Mosul in February 13. This has been the routine for violence in the governorate for years now. ISIS is the most active group there and is most concerned with maintaining its protection rackets in Mosul, and intimidating the local population and government.


Security Incidents And Casualties Ninewa Feb. 8-14, 2014
Date
Attacks
Dead
Wounded
2/8/14
6
4
7
2/9/14
3
2
0
2/10/14
7
20
14
2/11/14
8
6
6
2/12/14
5
1
6
2/13/14
6
5
1
2/14/14
1
0
2
TOTALS
36
38
36


Babil is the other province where violence has picked in recent weeks. In the start of the month there were only two attacks with no casualties. By the second week that jumped to 16 attacks, 33 killed, and 70 wounded. Most of that violence was based in the town of Jurf al-Sakhr, which is in the north of the province. On February 8 a large gun battle broke out between insurgents and the army in Jurf al-Sakhr that lasted for several hours. By the end of the day there were two dead soldiers and 36 wounded. The fighting continued into the next day with two soldiers wounded by a roadside bomb. Then on February 11 4 IEDs went off in the town leaving 2 Federal Police and 2 soldiers dead, along with 11 policeman and 11 soldiers injured. February 12 two roadside bombs killed six soldiers and mortar fire killed one civilian and wounded another. February 13 two bodyguards of a parliamentarian were shot and killed, and the following day fighting broke out again leaving 11 soldiers dead and three injured. ISIS has re-established itself in the northern section of the province, but there might be other groups active there as well. The fact that militants have consistently stood and fought in Babil showed that they have become more emboldened, and are moving from carrying out terrorist attacks to holding ground.


Security Incidents And Casualties Babil Feb. 8-14, 2014
Date
Attacks
Dead
Wounded
2/8/14
3
2
36
2/9/14
2
0
2
2/10/14
1
1
3
2/11/14
2
4
22
2/12/14
4
13
2
2/13/14
1
2
0
2/14/14
3
11
5
TOTALS
16
33
70


Tamim, Diyala, Wasit, Karbala, and Dhi Qar only saw sporadic violence for the period. Tamim had 20 attacks, 14 killed, and 19 wounded. February 13 had the most casualties with 7 killed and 11 injured. For the other days there were only 1-3 people killed each. In Diyala there were only 12 attacks, 12 deaths, and 28 injured. There were actually no incidents reported on February 11 and 14. In both provinces there were just very small and targeted incidents. Dhi Qar, Karbala, and Wasit only had one attack each. These consisted of an IED in Karbala on February 8 that killed 1, and IED in a market in Nasiriyah on February 10 that left one fatality and four wounded, and a shooting on February 13 in Aziziya in Wasit that killed two brothers. Tamim, Diyala and the south have been relatively quiet for the last several weeks. ISIS was carrying out several car bombings each month in southern Iraq starting in December 2012, but that ended in November 2013. It and other insurgents appear to be focusing upon other parts of the country currently, which has benefited these provinces.


Security Incidents And Casualties Tamim Feb. 8-14, 2014
Date
Attacks
Dead
Wounded
2/8/14
4
1
1
2/9/14
2
1
4
2/10/14
4
3
0
2/11/14
3
1
1
2/12/14
1
0
1
2/13/14
5
7
9
2/14/14
1
1
3
TOTALS
20
14
19

Security Incidents And Casualties Diyala Feb. 8-14, 2014
Date
Attacks
Dead
Wounded
2/8/14
3
1
5
2/9/14
4
4
4
2/10/14
1
0
2
2/11/14
0
0
0
2/12/14
2
2
0
2/13/14
2
5
17
2/14/14
0
0
0
TOTALS
12
12
28

Security Incidents And Casualties Southern Iraq Feb. 8-14, 2014
Date
Attacks
Dead
Wounded
2/8/14
1
1
0
2/9/14
0
0
0
2/10/14
1
1
4
2/11/14
0
0
0
2/12/14
0
0
0
2/13/14
1
2
0
2/14/14
0
0
0
TOTALS
3
4
4


Violence picked up in Anbar, Babil, and Salahaddin for the quarter. That appears to be where insurgents are concentrating their forces. In the first two there were direct confrontations with the security forces over a series of days, which showed a large escalation from previous weeks. ISIS has publicly stated that it wants to seize and hold territory as part of its new Soldiers’ Harvest campaign, and is now following through with those plans. There are other groups active as well in Anbar and Salahaddin. All these militant groups now believe that the time is ripe for an uprising against the government after Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s miscalculations in Anbar that started the on-going fighting. This period is much like 2004 when the insurgency originally took off in Iraq.

SOURCES

A note about sources. Usually all of the articles consulted are listed in the bibliography. Since this report is based upon over 500 of them it is impossible to have them all in the piece. For the sake of space then only the reports that were linked are included here.

AIN, "4 Shells hit northern Babel," 2/12/14
- "13 soldiers killed, injured northern Babel," 2/11/14
- "IED explodes in northern Babel," 2/9/14
- "Urgent…3 ISIS leaders killed within northern Babel armed clashes," 2/9/14

Alsumaria, "The bombing of three police stations northwest of Ramadi," 2/11/14

Aswat al-Iraq, "2 civilians killed, 10+ wounded in Sadr city," 2/9/14

Buratha News, "Martyrdom and injury 7 people, including an officer in intelligence by a sticky bomb in his car east of Tikrit," 2/8/14

Al Forat, "Car bomb partially goes off in Baghdad," 2/10/14

Hamid, Ghassan, Shafiq, Mohammed, "Injury to associate the two crimes directorate New Baghdad by a sticky bomb south of the capital," Alsumaria, 2/14/14

Al Mada, "Killing and wounding four members of the Awakening explosion south-west of Baghdad," 2/8/14
- "Three bodies were found in the awakening of the elements and the police dumped and shot dead north of Baghdad," 2/9/14

Al Masalah, "Killing one civilian and wounding four blast amid Nasiriyah," 2/10/14
- "Killing one person and wounding three in bomb explosion in Diyala Bridge area," 2/12/14
- "Toll rises explosion and fire in Shorja to 9 dead and 27 injured," 2/13/14

NINA, "BREAKING NEWS…14 soldiers killed, wounded north of Hilla," 2/14/14
- "BREAKING NEWS. A suicide attack on a gathering of military and police forces in Ramadi," 2/11/14
- "Car bomb goes off southern Baghdad," 2/9/14
- "A civilian and a policeman killed in two separate incidents in Mosul," 2/13/14
- "Gunmen kill two brothers in Wasit province," 2/13/14
- "A Policeman Killed and Two Others Wounded by a Roadside Bomb West of Mosul," 2/11/14
- "A Soldier Got Martyrdom by Gunmen in Eastern Mosul," 2/8/14

Radio Nawa, "The bombing of a bridge linking Fallujah, Ramadi suicide attack," 2/11/14
- "Killing and wounding five people explosion of a suicide bomber targeting a checkpoint in Anbar," 2/11/14

Al Rayy, "The death of someone near the explosion at a security checkpoint in Karbala," 2/8/14
- "The killing of four members of the "Daash" and wounding a soldier in armed clashes east of Ramadi," 2/8/14
-"Martyrdom and wounding 13 soldiers, including two officers by a roadside bomb north of Babylon," 2/11/14
- "Martyrdom of two MP protection in armed attack," 2/13/14
- "Urgent…the martyrdom of one civilian and wounding four civilians in a car bombing in the area of Madain south of Baghdad," 2/12/14
Salah, Amjad, "Killing an officer and wounding 31 soldiers, the bombing was followed by a gun battle north of Babylon," Alsumaria, 2/8/14

Salaheddin, Sinan "Gunmen attack army, kill 15 troops in north Iraq," 2/11/14

Salman, Duriad, Al-Ani, Ammar, "Killing six people, including a baby and injuring 35 others in bombing operations in Fallujah," Alsumaria, 2/11/14

Xinhua, "12 killed in Iraq's violence," 2/13/14

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