Updated at 5:40 p.m. EDT, Aug. 15, 2011
At least 106 Iraqis were killed and 337 more were wounded in a series of what has been called "coordinated" attacks against security targets across the country. Because the violence focused on Shi’ite towns and security officials, al-Qaeda affiliates were immediately blamed. This surge in violence directed at security targets, however, actually began late last week.
Many analysts noted the attacks coincide with Ramadan observances, but such widespread violence has taken place in previous Augusts regardless of religious connection. Multiple strikes took place last August and in August of 2009, which was dubbed "Bloody Wednesday" over the incomprehensible number of casualties that occurred as attacks were supposedly on a steep decline.
Today, several bombings did take place in the Shi’te south, but attacks also occurred in predominantly Sunni areas in central Iraq, particularly Diyala province, and harmed mixed groups. At least 18 provinces were affected, and several car bombs were reportedly found and dismantled before they could cause more damage.
The largest number of victims was in the southern city of Kut, where a double bombing left at least 42 dead and 75 wounded, mostly civilians. A percussion bomb exploded first, near a jewelry store in a shopping district. When first responders arrived, a second, larger car bomb exploded. Among the dead were 12 children. Such large-scale attacks have been rare in Kut, but similar multiple bombings took place last year before and during Ramadan observances.
In Baquba, four soldiers were killed during a shooting at a checkpoint. Twelve people were wounded in a blast near a passport office. A local leader was targeted in a blast that left no casualties. At least nine more were killed in other attacks.
A suicide bomber killed eight and wounded 21 at an army base in Khan Bani Saad.
In Baghdad, a blast in Ilam killed one person and wounded nine more. In Zaafaraniya, a bomb planted at a mobile phone shop killed one and wounded five more.Five people were wounded in a blast in Utifiya. A car bomb wounded five in Mansour. Three were wounded in a Ghazaliya explosion.
Gunmen in military uniforms executed seven Sahwa members after removing them from a Yusufiya mosque.
A policeman was killed and 13 were wounded when a car bomb exploded near a government building in Wajihiya.
A car bomb exploded in Kirkuk, killing one and wounded eight and injuring four. Seven more were wounded when a motorcycle bomb exploded. One attack targeted a Christian church. Four Tiyour al-Janna suspects were arrested.
One person was killed and nine more were wounded, including civilians, during a bomb attack targeting soldiers in Taji.>
A bomb in Balad wounded six people.
Five policemen were wounded during a bomb attack in Kanaan.
Nine people were wounded in random attacks across Diyala province.
A blast wounded three policemen in Ramadi.