ISIS Terrorist Attacks in Baghdad Amid Continued Political Chaos

More than 90 dead in multiple attacks.


More than 90 people have been killed in a string of terrorist attacks in Baghdad for which the Islamic State (ISIS) claimed responsibility, CNN reports. A car bombing in the Shiite neighborhood Sadr City killed more than 60, and a suicide bomber in another Shiite neighborhood killed at least 17.

There have been several terrorist attacks in Iraq for which ISIS claimed responsibility, including in and near Baghdad and elsewhere in the country, including an attack earlier this month deep in the majority Shi'ite south of the country.

The attacks come as Iraqi, U.S., and allied forces continue to attempt to retake Mosul from ISIS. Meanwhile, the Iraqi government is in turmoil. In late March, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi tried to submit a new cabinet in late March, consisting of technocrats who were not affiliated with the various political parties in Iraq's parliament, in an attempt to tackle government corruption. Amid the crisis, Vice President Joe Biden called the prime minister, noting "ongoing U.S. efforts to mobilize assistance for Iraq's economic recovery."

Writing in The New York Times last month, former U.S. Ambassador to Iraq Zalmay Khalilizad noted that Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani and other activists had spent months "calling for a range of reforms, including shrinking the size of government, improving services, cutting wasteful spending and fighting corruption," though al-Sistani did not back al-Abadi's cabinet move.

Al-Abadi and the United Nations warned last month that the political chaos surrounding anti-corruption attempts would benefit ISIS. "The conflict has crippled parliament and could obstruct the work of the government, impacting the heroic operations to free our cities and villages (from Islamic State)," the prime minister insisted in April.

Last weekend, protesters stormed the heavily fortified Green Zone in Baghdad, where the seat of Iraqi government is, briefly occupying the parliament building and demanding a vote on a revised list of cabinet appointments, which included nominees affiliated with the various political parties. The parliament failed again yesterday to vote on the cabinet appointments—a quorum of a simple majority of members of parliament was not met.

NEXT: The 'Conservatarian' Collapse, Obama's 'Narrative' Dishonesty, and the Real Estate Anguish of Ta-Nehisi Coates

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  2. Then there is this…..1462872603

    If one of the people on those lists is killed by an ISIS sympathizer, would Reason support going to war with ISIS? If not, why not? If protecting American citizens inside the United States is not a legitimate function of government and reason for war, what is?

    1. I think it’s time to revive the Crusades, myself. Deus vult, barbarians.

    2. We just need to bomb more wedding parties and hospitals. Then they’ll know we mean business.

      1. What should we do if people on those lists are murdered? Is it your position we should do nothing? Is it okay for a foreign power to make kill lists of American citizens and encourage their sympathizers in this country to murder those people?

        1. I can’t read your story because I’m not a member. However, if they murder Americans, then the murder should be arrested and tried for murder. If they suicide bomb, then the killer is already dead.

          1. So a foreign power can encourage the murder of Americans and that is okay because the actual murderer goes to jail?

            How can the encouragement of murder of American citizens not be an act of war?

            1. The murder still has agency. They are responsible for their actions.

              1. So do soldiers. By your logic they could send soldiers here to kill Americans and that would not be an active war. Short of the President pulling the trigger himself nothing could be.

                1. So by your logic Trump, Clinton and Sanders are responsible for any violence their supports do? Encouraging and sending soldiers are two different things.

        2. The forever war. Wasn’t that a book?

          1. You don’t get peace until your enemies give it to you. Life sucks like that sometimes.

    3. If the US can make kill lists targeting American citizens, why shouldn’t ISIS be able to do the same??

      In seriousness, this might be a valid causus beli in my opinion, but the US in the past century has shown it is incompetent at waging war. The amount of TERRORISTS we’ve already armed in the fight against ISIS is going to backfire horribly. Every time we fuck around in the middle east, we give horrible people weapons, and those people are our enemies the following year. We armed ISIS, and continue to arm them though our “friends” the Saudis. So I do not think warring with ISIS is a good idea, we’ll just create enemies to fight next year. Fire all the idiots in the military and replace them and cut off the terrorist-funding Arabians from the American teat, if you want to start talking about going to war.

      You need an actual solution to win for war with ISIS to be useful. And as long as we give weapons to terrorist fucks, we will never have a strategy that can truly win in the middle east. With the current state of the US, it’s like asking if a man should defend himself from a mugger, when the only action of “self defense” the man in question knows is to shoot himself in the foot.

      1. If the US can make kill lists targeting American citizens, why shouldn’t ISIS be able to do the same??

        The lists we make are of people actively waging war against us. Their lists are of random people out of the phone book. That is a pretty big difference.

        And my solution involves not giving anyone weapons. It involves using weapons and making people terrified of us again.

      2. The amount of TERRORISTS we’ve already armed in the fight against ISIS is going to backfire horribly.

        That’s why I say we arm them all. We can’t disarm them all and if you attempt to disarm the general population, only the law-abiding will disarm and the law-breakers will then be the only ones armed. (This should be a pretty straightforward argument for anybody familiar with the 2A/victim disarmament arguments in the good old USA.) If you don’t like getting blowed up by ISIS, here’s a gun, go kill them before they kill you. Sucks that that’s the way it’s gotta be, Achmed, but you either go kill them or they’re going to come kill you. If all the various terrorist groups want to use the weapons to kill each other, that’s fine too. If all the various terrorist groups want to kill all the innocent civilians, the innocent civilians better start fighting back. If the innocent civilians don’t or won’t or can’t fight back and all the terrorist groups succeed in driving out all the innocent civilians, why then you can start carpet bombing without worrying about killing innocent civilians then, can’t you?

    4. Within the NYPD, many officials believed the list didn’t call for notifications of individuals because there was no credible threat to their safety, while at the FBI a number of officials argued that they should be notified out of an abundance of caution, the officials said.

      No doubt, since the NYPD goes out of its way to make sure people can’t defend themselves. How dare they not rely on the police to protect them? They are probably scared someone might use this as a reason to get a firearm permit.

      1. I would would like to be armed if I were those people. But realistically, it is unlikely to do you much good. By the time you realize the guy is there to kill you, it is likely going to be too late to stop him even if you do have a gun.

    5. Islamic State has begun distributing increasingly long “kill lists” of ordinary Americans purportedly encouraging its followers to target those individuals, vexing authorities who are at odds over whether the lists pose an actual threat or are merely scare tactics.

      I thought this vexation had been solved via all the cyberbullying litigation.

  3. So another Wednesday in Baghdad.

  4. Well, all of those trillions they spent in Iraq and lives lost was a huge success, no? I guess they sure proved us peacenik isolationist wrong on this one.

    1. Iraq was fine in 2011. It didn’t fall apart until we walked away. The peaceniks were right in so far that Iraq is a shithole and the people in it animals who apparently don’t want or are unable to have anything but a shithole country.

      There is no arguing that, but I am not sure that is quite what most of them were saying.

      1. No, it fell apart when we came. It was fine under Saddam. Sure Saddam is a murderous thug, but it was stable. It’s not going to be stable again until we get out and another strong man takes over, or it becomes another caliphate like Iran. That’s just the way it is. Western democracy and western culture are foreign things to most of these people. They don’t understand it and don’t want it. If they do want it, it’s their job to get it done, no one from the outside can do it. What you get instead is exactly what we see now.

        1. It was not fine under Saddam. It was completely falling apart, and was under UN sanction and air war with the US. Had we never invaded, eventually it would have fallen apart like Syria. It was not fine. thinking it was is just as stupid and counter factual as thinking that we could roll in, have an election and go home.

          1. eventually it would have fallen apart like Syria

            in contrast to what?

            This seems to support that the US invasion made little real difference in the ultimate fate of the country.

  5. Hmm. Corrupt, ineffective parliament blocking passage of needed reform and hampering action against government forces?

    Sounds like what we need is a strongman. That would be ironic.

    1. *anti-government forces

  6. Don’t worry, president Hillary is going to fix this. She’s going to fix the rest of the middle east too, you just wait and see.

    1. “Please, stop fixing us!”

      1. I wish you’d stop being so good to me, boss.

      2. If only Microsoft would follow that advice.

  7. “Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani and other activists had spent months “calling for a range of reforms, including shrinking the size of government, improving services, cutting wasteful spending and fighting corruption”

    They actually sound like a mature democracy. Whenever somebody wants to cut spending, democratic governments everywhere all seem to sound the same.

    The left says there’s nothing left to cut.

    The right says if we cut, then the terrorists will win.

    I’d condemn the Iraqis for sitting around waiting for America to save them, but then I’d have to ignore all the Americans sitting around waiting for Trump to save us.

    The solution to Iraq’s problems will take the combined efforts of millions of Iraqis to work out over the course of decades. We’re lucky we don’t have any problems that require solutions like that in America. Sure, we have structural unemployment, runaway spending, an underclass with an entitlement mentality, and Caitlin Jenner, but don’t worry. Once we elect Trump, he’ll make America great again–by soaking the rich with taxes, railing against free trade, and being politically incorrect.

    Unfortunately, we don’t have anybody with the authority, credibility, and good sense of Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani.

  8. Read that statement again:

    “Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani and other activists had spent months “calling for a range of reforms, including shrinking the size of government, improving services, cutting wasteful spending and fighting corruption”

    I wish Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani were running for President of the United States! With thinking like that, I’d vote for him over Hillary or Donald Trump, without hesitation.

    P.S. If only the current Pope were half as sensible!

    1. I wish Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani were running for President of the United States!

      He’s the next mayor of London.

      On a more serious note, I think the key word here is Ayatollah. I don’t think what he said means what you think it means.

      1. “Shrinking the size of government” means disappearing those who are out favor, etc.

        1. al-Sistani isn’t really like that.

          I’ll put it this way: his legitimacy isn’t grounded in something as silly as a popularity contest.

          He may be the only figure in the region who had a lot of legitimacy before we invaded Iraq and managed to keep it intact amid the turmoil.

          1. Does he advocate for Sharia law? That stuff with totally harsh your buzz, dude. But if he promises to make Triggly Puff and her merry band of SJWs go away, then I can give voting for him some serious thought.

            1. He is the law.

              He’s like Judge Dredd.

        2. You guys should read about him:

          He’s a pretty righteous dude.

          I’d point out that he’s perpetually on the short list for the Nobel Peace Prize, but that might sully his reputation.

          1. I’m checking him out. Right off, I see he has facial hair, he looks serious and wears black. That’s +3 right there. Are there any pics of him posing with a really scary black AR-15? That might get him another +2 alone.

          2. I met him once. He is a very righteous dude.

            1. “He has consistently urged the Iraqi Shia not to respond in kind to attacks from Sunni Salafists, which have become common in Sunni-dominated regions of Iraq like the area known as the “Triangle of Death,” south of Baghdad. Even after the destruction of the Shia Al-Askari Mosque in Samarra in February 2006, his network of clerics and preachers continued to urge calm and told their followers that “it was not their Sunni neighbors who were killing them but foreign Wahhabis.”[11] Sistani’s call for unity after the bombing of the mosque helped to control a potentially dangerous situation, preventing the country to enter in a bloody sectarian war. Sistani did the same when the same mosque was bombed again in 2007.[12]

              My grandmother would have described that as “Christian”.

      2. It does.

        Those aren’t the only issues he cares about, but he cares about that stuff, too.

        I’d put up with a lot if I got to choose between fiscal conservatism and shrinking the government, on the one hand, or personal freedom on the other.

        With a choice between Trump and Hillary, we don’t get to choose either one!

        Surely, having to choose between fiscal conservatism and personal freedom is better than not getting to choose either one.

        1. I’m going to take a wild guess here that ‘fighting corruption’ means lashes for those infidels not following Sharia law.

          1. Yer on autopilot.

    2. We could do a whole lot worse than Sistani. Sadly, the younger generations in Iraq are not quite up to his standards.

    3. “Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani and other activists had spent months “calling for a range of reforms, including shrinking the size of government, improving services, cutting wasteful spending and fighting corruption”

      Pffft. Pikers. The GOP has been calling for that stuff for like 40 years. So this guy’s like Pete Domenici?

      1. He’s not a politician.

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