Following last Wednesday’s string of bombings in Baghdad, which caused well over 1,000 casualties in a one-hour span and did major damage to several high profile government targets, speculation regarding the responsibility has come from several sources.
The US blamed al-Qaeda, the Iraqi government blamed Ba’athists, opposition figures in the government blamed infighting among the ruling elite. It seemed every group with an axe to grind had a convenient theory about who was actually to blame.
But today the Islamic State of Iraq, the umbrella group for al-Qaeda in Iraq, issued a statement through their website declaring that they were, in fact, responsible for the attacks. They confirmed that the targets were government installations, and slammed the “heretic” establishment, a nod to the Sunni group’s distaste for the Shi’ite led government.
While the group’s willingness to cause major casualties was never in doubt, its late-coming confession is bound to raise considerable questions, particularly since the Iraqi military captured a Ba’athist it claimed was the mastermind of the bombing and publicly broadcast his “confession” on state media.