Iraq: is the tide turning?

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The Independent Online

Two years after American troops pulled down the statue of Saddam Hussein in central Baghdad and a lethal insurgency against US occupation of Iraq began, the nightmare that has brought death to countless civilians may be coming to an end.

Two years after American troops pulled down the statue of Saddam Hussein in central Baghdad and a lethal insurgency against US occupation of Iraq began, the nightmare that has brought death to countless civilians may be coming to an end.

Attacks on US forces are down from 140 a day to 30 a day. Casualty figures are down. So are assassination attempts. US commanders believe they can reduce forces by up to 40,000. An upbeat General Richard Myers, the chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, said this week: "We're on track."

Yesterday, an American civilian contractor was kidnapped in Baghdad. The dying is not over but, in Baghdad and Washington, the feeling is growing that the worst might just be over.

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