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Violence inside Iraq continues in spite of news lockout

Sandstorm in Baghdad
Sandstorm in Baghdad
Private contractor inside Iraq

Mainstream news has turned their attention to the newly erupted conflict in Israel and Gaza, in doing so, verifiable news from inside Iraq generally, and Baghdad specifically, has been hard to come by.

NPR released the most recent information yesterday that 33 civilians, including some 20 women had been gunned down in Zayounah a neighborhood in Eastern Baghdad. While no one has claimed responsibility for the attack, information from Reuters indicates:

"Shi'ite militias have been accused by locals of carrying out killings of women branded as prostitutes in that district of the capital, though there was no way to immediately confirm who was responsible for the attack."

Any excuse for violence in Iraq seems to be justified.

Unrelated to the killings in Zayounah, two days ago, KPLC News updated a CNN report stating ISIS invaders have positioned themselves about 15 miles from the Baghdad airport. The United States Embassy is approximately 12 miles, as the crow flies, from the Baghdad International Airport. The Dutch and British Embassies in Baghdad are in close proximity to the U.S. Embassy. No one can verify if the other two embassies are still fully staffed.

Private contractors who work and live within the embassy compound have removed their Facebook pages; for some that was a soul source of outside news following Iraq's Minister of Communication's decree to cut off CNN and CSPAN feeds into the compound. Cell service still seems to be adequate.

Yesterday, the Iraqi government confirmed they have airlifted some 4,000 volunteer fighters to Ramadi to augment Iraqi security forces and Iraqi army personnel fighting against the Sunni insurgency that has pretty much taken over the entire country.

Russian, Iranian, and Iraqi jets are currently flying sorties over the country in a relatively unsuccessful effort to find ISIS leaders and militia insurgency headquarters. There seem to be no clearly identifiable targets. Last week a U.K. publication reported one Iranian pilot had been killed in the conflict.

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