Last updated 10/26 11:15 AM EST
Baghdad is still reeling tonight after a pair of suicide car bombings, against the Justice Ministry and the Baghdad Provincial Administration building, killed at least 160. The official toll of wounded is 500, but multiple reports yesterday had the number well over 700.
The casualties overwhelmed local hospitals, and officials were seizing civilian vehicles to help transport the wounded for medical assistance. The provincial administration building was reportedly destroyed, while the Justice Ministry sustained heavy damage.
The attacks were the deadliest in over two years, and eerily reminiscent of a similar strike two months ago which killed just over 100 and wounded over 1,000.
The enormity of the attacks and their close proximity to the Green Zone has again raised questions about the government’s ability to provide security. If such critical government sites were vulnerable, what chance does that give to the rest of the nation?
So far no one has claimed credit for the attack, but Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki quickly blamed al-Qaeda for the bombings, insisting they were designed to prevent the parliamentary elections, scheduled to be held about three months from now.