The violence is the latest in a series of attacks in recent weeks claimed by, or attributed to Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia
, a largely homegrown Sunni militant organization.
Almost all the attacks have been attributed to Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia
, which is also known as Al Qaeda in Iraq," the report added.
But just last Sunday, Clark Hoyt, the paper's new public editor, had criticized the paper for doing much the same, in increasingly pointing to al-Qaeda influence and failing to point out the distinction between the newly-formed Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia
group and Osama bin Laden's operation.
The use of a European woman by Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia
, which is led by the infamous Abu Musab Al Zarqawi, a Jordanian-Palestinian and the most wanted insurgent leader in Iraq, may have unveiled a new tactic by the jihadists who, like other militant groups, Muslim and non-Muslim, have been recruiting a growing number of women for suicide bombing missions.
But the restaurant is in an area where Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia
- a largely Iraqi insurgent group which American intelligence officials say has foreign leadership - has been active.
The bodies were believed to be those of Iraqi Army recruits from Karbala who were killed by gunmen from Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia
News of the movement on the security agreement came on a day when the American military announced that its soldiers had killed the second in command of Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia
who directed the group's operations in northern Iraq, the area of the country that remains the most troubled by extremist Sunni insurgents.
The Awakening Councils have joined the fight against Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia
and are one of the key reasons why violence in Iraq is at its lowest levels in years.
The arrival of the 30,000 extra soldiers, deployed to Baghdad's neighborhoods around the clock, allowed the Americans to exploit a series of momentous events that had begun to unfold at roughly the same time: the splintering of Moktada al-Sadr's militia, the Mahdi Army; the growing competence of the Iraqi Army; and most important, the about-face by leaders of the country's Sunni minority, who suddenly stopped opposing the Americans and joined with them against Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia
and other local extremist groups.
The area where the attack occurred is a former stronghold of Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia
that has seen a steep drop in violence since Sunnis joined forces with the US military against the terror network.
Iraqi soldiers reach the northern city of Mosul on Jan 27 for an operation against the Sunni insurgent group Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia
, in a response to a week of violence in which at least 34 people were killed in a house explosion, followed by a suicide attack against a senior police official.
Leading US commanders in northern Iraq predict that the battle to oust Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia
from its last urban stronghold would not be swift but rather a grinding campaign for Mosul that will require more firepower from both the Pentagon and Iraqi allies.