Reported Security Incidents
Further information is available on the attack yesterday on Iraq's largest oil refinery. The death toll is now reported as 1 worker. "Dr. Abdul Jabbar al-Halfi, a professor at Basra University's oil engineering department and frequent visitor to the Beiji refinery, pointed out that visitors to Beiji need a special badge to even get within a mile (2 kilometers) of the facility and suggested it might have been an inside job." Technicians say they can get the facility back on line in one week. [We shall see.] Meanwhile, the refinery accounts for 1/4 of Iraq's fuel production and the incident could exacerbate the electricity shortage which contributes to current unrest.
Twenty seven demonstrators are injured in clashes with security forces.
Five armed men are killed by security forces. One of the men blows himself up; others are shot dead.
Other News of the Day
Baghdad is placed under a curfew to curb further demonstrations.
Meanwhile, PM Nuri al-Maliki takes decisive action in response to the demonstrations, (not). He gives his cabinet ministers 100 days to shape up or he'll give them a negative evaluation. [That should put an end to any further unrest. -- C] Protest organizers are calling for a national "Day of Regret" on Friday, March 4 to mark the anniversary of the parliamentary elections,which have so far failed to produce effective government.
New UK draft budget ends all aid to Iraq, among 16 other countries.
NYT's Duraid Adnan gives an eyewitness account of the protest in Baghdad on Friday, including clashes with security forces.
Two bombs planted at a picnic hosted by a former police chief kill 10 and injure 17 in Arghandab district of Kandahar Province. Two police officers are among the dead. Al Jazeera, however, characterizes the event quite differently, as a dog fight. According to Al Jazeera, although dog fighting is technically illegal in Afghanistan, it is widely tolerated. Police were arriving to break it up when the bombs exploded. "It was unclear who the target of the attack was, though a witness said it was unlikely that it was the police. "The Taliban also don't allow dogfighting," Ismail Alokozai, a local resident, who was in the area during the first blast and helped some of the wounded, told the Associated Press." [Quite interesting how differently various media describe this incident. -- C]
A child is killed and a civilian injured in a bomb attack on a police car in Herat.
Quote of the Day
Like the European revolutions of 1848 and the uprising against Stalinism in 1989, the Arab revolt has rejected fear. An insurrection of suppressed ideas, hope and solidarity has begun. In the United States, where 45 per cent of young African-Americans have no jobs and the top hedge fund managers are paid, on average, a billion dollars a year, mass protests against cuts in services and jobs have spread to heartland states like Wisconsin. In Britain, the fastest-growing modern protest movement, UK Uncut, is about to take direct action against tax avoiders and rapacious banks. Something has changed that cannot be unchanged. The enemy has a name now.