IRAQ IS once again experiencing bloodshed. A series of blasts across the country on Sunday killed more than 50 people and left behind scores in a state of despair. The attacks, which seem to be well coordinated taking into account their timings and targets, were apparently meant to send down the message that the terror infrastructure still survives.
The unscrupulous elements, in fact, once again targetted a particular community with the intention of plunging Iraq into renewed episodes of warfare and sectarianism. These blasts, many of which are suspected to be suicide attacks north of Baghdad and in Kirkuk, have come close on the heels of a similar attack last week that targetted pilgrims. A foreign consulate, a recruitment centre and security installations that were attacked in more than 10 choreographed blasts just go on to detail the true face of the enemy. The prima facie was to create another sense of mayhem, and discourage the youth who are enrolling themselves with the government establishments in police, army and civil services. The faith that the Iraqis have come to repose in their new political dispensation — by keeping apart their historic animosity and differences in political and sectarian realms — is an indication of their resilience. This is what the enemy wants to sabotage, and the chaos and uncertainty is an outcome of such dubious intentions.
The government of Prime Minister Nouri Al Maliki has to take a holistic look at the happenings, and deal with it, accordingly. The problem, apart from being one of security, is also of social mobility. The government has to keep in mind that Iraqis have had enough in the name of dictatorship, occupation and war. One of the most civilised Arab countries was destroyed and its resources and human potential plundered. Moreover, the undercurrents of realpolitik made Iraq one of the hubs of terrorist elements — pushing further the war-torn nation into the abyss of fragmentation. Iraqis certainly deserve a better deal, and the best way to honour their enterprise and resilience is to cement nationalism. At the same time, Iraq is in need of beefing up its intelligence in order to flush out the remnants of Al Qaeda, and the like. While terror has been revisiting repeatedly, much more needs to be done — and quickly, to nip the runaway violence in the bud.