Iraq: One Year Later: Which Way Is The Exit?

THE DATE IS SET FOR A HANDOVER TO THE IRAQIS, BUT EVERYTHING ELSE IS TROUBLE. A TIME GUIDE TO THE HURDLES THE U.S. FACES IN ENSURING A SMOOTH TRANSITION

There's rarely a day in Iraq when something doesn't blow up. Take last week. First there were the suicide bombs that shattered the holiest day in the Shi'ite Muslim calendar with profane carnage. As devout worshippers crowded the sect's most sacred shrines in Karbala and Baghdad, a succession of explosions ripped through the crowds flogging themselves in ritual guilt for the murder 14 centuries ago of revered leader Imam Hussein. Suddenly the death and blood were made more terribly real, as 181 perished and 571 fell injured. Panicked pilgrims stampeded for cover, and a guard from the religious militia providing security...

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