As noted yesterday, Bush (countdown: 1,453 days) summed up the situation in Iraq going into the weekend of the vote this way: “It’s exciting times for the Iraqi people.”
The New York Times today carries a story from John Burns in Baghdad that captures the sense of excitement:
“… Daily life here has become a deadly lottery, a place so fraught with danger that one senior American military officer acknowledged at a briefing last month that nowhere in the area assigned to his troops could be considered safe.
‘I would definitely say it’s enemy territory,’ said Col. Stephen R. Lanza, the commander of the Fifth Brigade Combat Team, a unit of the First Cavalry Division that is responsible for patrolling a wide area of southern Baghdad with a population of 1.3 million people.
“In the week that ended Sunday, according to figures kept by Western security companies with access to data compiled by the American command, Baghdad was hit by 7 suicide car bombings, 37 roadside bombs and 52 insurgent attacks involving automatic rifles or rocket-propelled grenades. The suicide bombs alone killed at least 60 people and injured 150 others.”