BAGHDAD, Oct. 19 — The American-led crackdown in Baghdad has not succeeded in quelling violence across the capital and a new approach is needed, a military spokesman said today.
Maj. Gen. William B. Caldwell IV, the senior spokesman for the American military in Iraq, said that the strategy of concentrating on a limited number of highly troubled neighborhoods had not slowed sectarian violence in the city as a whole.
Attacks in the Baghdad area went up 22 percent during the first three weeks of Ramadan in comparison with the three weeks before, an increase General Caldwell called “disheartening.”
The crackdown, which began in August, “has made a difference in the focus areas but has not met our overall expectations in sustaining a reduction in the level of violence,” General Caldwell said, adding that American commanders were consulting with the Iraqi government on a change in plans. more