A U.S. soldier, an 8-year-old Iraqi child, and a pro-American mayor and his son were killed Wednesday as Iraqi fighters unleashed a string of attacks on the eve of a recently banned Baath Party holiday. Another US soldier died in an accident.
The soldier was killed after an explosion at about 9 a.m. as a 20-vehicle military convoy was passing a wrecked car that had been abandoned alongside the road, Spc. Jose Colon told The Associated Press. The soldier that died was blown out of a truck that was nearest to the blast, Colon said. Soldiers said a bomb was hidden in the car wreckage.
Spc. Carlos McKenzie said the supply convoy, which was on its way to a U.S. base in the desert near Iraq's border with Jordan, did not have enough protection from more heavily armed units.
Meanwhile, the pro-American mayor of Hadithah in western Iraq was shot and killed Wednesday along with one of his nine sons, the U.S. military reported. The Arab satellite network Al-Jazeera said Mohammed Nayil al-Jurayfi's car was shot up by unidentified attackers as he drove through the city of about 150,000 about 230 kilometers northwest of Baghdad.
In the attack that killed the Iraqi child, an assailant threw a grenade into a U.S. military vehicle guarding a bank in the upscale al-Mansour neighborhood in west Baghdad. The soldier was injured and taken to a military hospital along with four adult Iraqi bystanders who were also injured, said Maj. Kevin West of the 4th Battalion, 1st Field Artillery.
The attacks Wednesday came a day before a holiday marking the 1968 coming to power of Saddam's now-dissolved Baath Party. U.S. officials have warned of possible stepped up attacks to mark the anniversary, and the new Iraq Governing Council canceled this holiday.
Also Wednesday, a U.S. Marine died in the southern city of Hilla when he fell off a building he was guarding. The soldier was rushed to a hospital but succumbed to his injuries. (Albawaba.com)
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