Last time the Al Askariya mosque in Samarra, Iraq was bombed, all hell broke loose. It happened again today. Hopefully this time both Shia and Sunni can work together to decry the imbecility of al Qaeda for perpetrating yet another in a long series of senseless attacks.
I was still in Iraq in February, 2006 when the al Askariya Mosque in Samarra was significantly damaged by bombing. The relative improvement in stability in Iraq up to that point was shattered by the sectarian hatred and violence that ensued. Deaths--civilian and military--which had been going down, suddenly went back up.
Today, 16, months later, it was attacked again. It appears that the damage was greater this time. However, so far there is guarded optimism that it will not incite the same bloodthirst that the 2006 attack did. Requests have been made for American troops to return to Samarra to help provide greater security.
[The Iraqi government] directly accused al-Qa'eda of efforts to "burn Iraq with the fire of sectarian strife" and added: "We call upon our Iraqi people to exercise self-restraint and not be dragged into reactions like those planned by the killers."
In his typically Jesse-Jackson-like way, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad blamed the bombings on the Bush Administration.
Iran's president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, blamed America's continued presence in Iraq for the bombings.
It's just too, much, isn't it, to blame the people who are really responsible?