The U.S. military said Tuesday that a Marine died in fighting west of the capital, pushing the American death toll for July to at least 75, the lowest in eight months. The monthly toll topped 100 in April, May and June.
Meanwhile, Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki faces a revolt within his party by factions that want him out as Iraqi leader, according to officials in his office and the political party he leads. Ibrahim al-Jaafari, al-Maliki's predecessor, leads the challenge and already has approached leaders of the country's two main Kurdish parties, parliament's two Sunni blocs and lawmakers loyal to powerful Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr.
Al-Jaafari's campaign, the officials said, according to AFP, was based on his concerns that al-Maliki's policies had led Iraq into turmoil because the prime minister was doing too little to promote national reconciliation.
"Al-Jaafari is proposing a national and nonsectarian political plan to save the nation," said Faleh al-Fayadh, a Dawa party lawmaker familiar with the former prime minister's contacts.