I can't remember when, but I think about 10 days ago there was a "I can't believe how much Bagdad has changed for the better since I was here in 2006" piece in the IHT, nicely timed to help promote NYT correspondent Dexter Filkins' book. (Isn't that covered off in the ethics book somewhere?)
The same day Reuters were running bomb stories.
Anyway, this one's for Dexter (from Reuters)
Resigned, bitter, Iraqis shop after Baghdad bomb
Monday, September 29, 2008
By Aseel Kami
Baghdad shopkeepers washed away blood and shoppers buying gifts returned to the streets on Monday after bombers struck ahead of a major holiday marking the end of Ramadan.
Four bombs in busy districts of Baghdad on Sunday evening killed at least 32 people and wounded scores as Iraqis shopped and broke their fast for the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
"Yes, there was an explosion yesterday, but I still came today: I have stuff to buy, clothes for my children, sweets," said Um Mays, 45, shrugging off a bombing close to where she was browsing for gifts.
"Explosions have become part of our daily life. The lucky survive, the unlucky die," she added.
In the worst incident, a car bomb was quickly followed by a suicide bombing in central Baghdad's Karrada district on Sunday evening. The area was packed with shoppers buying clothes and gifts before the Eid al-Fitr holiday.
The six-day public holiday begins on Tuesday to celebrate the end of the fasting month.
U.S. military officials say violence in Iraq is at four-year lows but some militant groups have stepped up attacks for the holy month of Ramadan, when Muslims observe a daytime fast.
"They should have prevented this disaster before it took place," said Leith Naji, a medical doctor, shopping with his 2-year-old son. "They should make the situation more secure. But what can we do? life goes on."
The spokesman for Iraqi security forces in Baghdad, Major-General Qassim Moussawi, vowed on Monday to hunt down the planners of the bombing and to prevent future attacks.
Abu Jassim, the owner of a clothes shop, was visibly upset, as he spoke: "We were expecting this would happen. People were crowded together, buying stuff for Eid. What shall I say? The subject has almost become boring. So many people I know have been killed in explosions."
A PLACE IN THE AUVERGNE
International Herald Tribune
New York Times
Vacation /Business Trip Furnished Apartment in Paris