NYT: 'Insurgents across Iraq launched their most significant and wide-ranging attacks in months on Monday, killing 68 people and wounding over 300, marking the most violent day in Iraq this year.
The violence touched nearly every region of the country, except for Kurdistan, and appeared to be aimed at security forces in both Sunni and Shiite areas.
In all, there were 37 attacks, more than double the daily average this year, nearing the level of violence at the height of the sectarian conflict here in 2006 and 2007. The attacks included 11 car bombs, 19 improvised explosive devices and 2 suicide bombers.
Coming a little less than two weeks after the Iraqi government said it would negotiate with the United States about keeping some of its 48,000 troops here after the end of the year, the violence raised significant questions about the capabilities of the Iraqi security forces.
No group claimed responsibility for the attacks on Monday. But in a voice recording posted on a Web site for Al Qaeda in Iraq last week, the spokesman for the terrorist group said that they were preparing a wide-scale attack.
“I promise you that we are on the right path,” said the spokesman, Abi Muhhamed al-Adnani. “Thank God that we are doing very well here.”
“Do not worry, the days of Zarqawi are going to return soon,” he said, referring to Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the former leader of Al Qaeda in Iraq who was killed by American forces in 2006. “We have men who have divorced themselves from life and love death more than you love life and killing is one of their wishes,” he said.'