The rising level of violence in Iraq took another turn for the worse today, as four US soldiers were killed in a pair of roadside bombings in the nation. The deaths made for one of the deadliest days in recent memory for US forces, whose casualties have dropped considerably since withdrawing from Iraq’s cities.
The deaths have added to the flurry of concerns about the already nebulous US pullout plan, and whether or not the promised drawdown may wind up delayed in the face of escalating violence.
Last month was the deadliest month in the nation in the past 13 months, and undercut US claims that the war was on a steady footing and everything was going according to plans. At least 456 Iraqis were killed and 1,739 wounded in August.
At this point, the US is intending to keep the roughly 130,000 troops in the nation until at least after the January 2010 elections, and may keep 75,000 in the nation even past August 2010, when combat operations are supposed to officially end. Even then though, officials have said they couldn’t rule out further delays and today’s deaths will likely add to the momentum against ending the war.