The recent violence in Sadrist areas of Baghdad should not distract us from the big picture. The capital city of Iraq is immensely more at peace than it was a year ago.
This time last year, there were deep booms and the rattle of extended firefights from virtually all around the compass throughout the day and night. Such incidents are now a rare occurrence in a week.
Some of the reasons for this progress are better known than others. The surge, the Awakening Councils and the neighborhood-based counterinsurgency program have received solid credit. (full story)