tampabay.com

Last week in Iraq

By TIMES WIRES
Published May 20, 2007


Attacks

- May 13 was one of the deadliest days in Iraq in recent weeks, with at least 124 people killed or found dead. A suicide truck bomb tore through the offices of a Kurdish political party in northern Iraq, killing 50 people, and a car bombing in a Baghdad market killed another 17.

- Iraqi police fired warning shots in the air at the scene of a double bombing in Baghdad on Tuesday, enforcing an order banning news photographers and TV camera operators from filming the aftermath of deadly bombings.

- Mortar rounds hammered the U.S.-controlled Green Zone in Baghdad on Wednesday, killing at least two people.

- Mortar rounds hit the U.S. Air Force base at Taji on Thursday, destroying a helicopter and damaging nine others, Iraqi police said.

- ABC News said Friday that two of its Iraqi staffers were slain late Thursday in Baghdad while driving home from work.

Military

- The Islamic State in Iraq, an al-Qaida front group, said May 13 it had captured three American soldiers in a deadly attack the day before, as thousands of U.S. troops searched insurgent areas south of Baghdad for their three missing comrades. Four Americans troops and an Iraqi translator were killed in the attack.

- President Bush has chosen Lt. Gen. Douglas Lute, the Pentagon's director of operations, to oversee the fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan as a "war czar, " officials said Tuesday.

- U.S. aircraft dropped leaflets seeking information about three U.S. soldiers feared captured by al-Qaida, as troops stepped up the search Tuesday.

- Britain's army reversed course Wednesday and announced that Prince Harry will not be sent to Iraq with his regiment due to "specific threats" that expose the third in line to the throne to an unacceptable degree of risk.

Rebuilding

- The U.S. and Iran said May 13 that they will hold talks in Baghdad about improving Iraq's security - a political turnabout for the two countries with the most influence over Iraq's future.

- Iraq is becoming a "Disneyland" for al-Qaida terror cells and the new focus of its "holy war" against the West, Rohan Gunaratna, the head of the International Center for Political Violence and Terrorism Research at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore, told a conference in London on Tuesday.

- The White House and Congress failed to strike a deal Friday after exchanging competing offers on an Iraq war spending bill that Democrats said should set a date for U.S. troops to leave.

Deaths

As of Saturday, 3, 414 U.S. troops have died in Iraq. Identifications as reported by the U.S. military and not previously published:

- Army 1st Lt. Andrew J. Bacevich, 27, Walpole, Mass.; explosion May 13; Balad, Salahuddin province.

- Army Sgt. 1st Class James D. Connell Jr., 40, Lake City, Tenn.; while on patrol May 12; Taqa.

- Army Pfc. Daniel W. Courneya, 19, Nashville, Mich.; while on patrol May 12; Taqa.

- Army Sgt. Allen J. Dunckley, 25, Yardley, Pa.; small-arms fire Monday; Salman Pak.

- Army Pfc. William A. Farrar Jr., 20, Redlands, Calif.; explosion May 11; Iskandariyah.

- Army Spc. Michael K. Frank, 36, Great Falls, Mont.; explosion May 10; Baghdad.

- Army Pfc. Aaron D. Gautier, 19, Hampton, Va.; small-arms fire Thursday; Baghdad.

- Army Sgt. Christopher N. Gonzalez, 25, Winslow, Ariz.; small-arms fire Monday; Salman Pak.

- Army Pfc. Zachary R. Gullett, 20, Hillsboro, Ohio; noncombat incident May 1; Baghdad.

- Army Pfc. Jonathan V. Hamm, 20, Baltimore; indirect fire Thursday; Baghdad.

- Army Pfc. Nicholas S. Hartge, 20, Rome City, Ind.; explosion Monday; Baghdad.

- Army Spc. Rhys W. Klasno, 20, Riverside, Calif.; explosion May 13; Haditha.

- Army Pfc. Christopher E. Murphy, 21, Lynchburg, Va.; while on patrol May 12; Taqa.

- Army Sgt. Steven M. Packer, 23, Clovis, Calif.; explosion Thursday; Rushdi Mullah.

- Army Pvt. Anthony J. Sausto, 22, Lake Havasu City, Ariz.; small-arms fire May 10; Baghdad.

- Army Sgt. Anthony J. Schober, 23, Carson City, Nev.; explosion May 12; Taqa.

- Air Force Staff Sgt. John T. Self, 29, Pontotoc, Miss.; combat Monday; near Baghdad.

- Marine Lance Cpl. Jeffrey D. Walker, 21, Macon, Ga.; combat Monday; Anbar province.

- Army Sgt. Thomas G. Wright, 38, Holly, Mich.; noncombat incident Monday; Balad.

- Marine Maj. Douglas A. Zembiec, 34, Albuquerque, N.M.; combat May 11; Baghdad.