August 23rd, 2009
12:31 PM ET
13 years ago

Mullen 'extremely concerned' over eruption of violence in Iraq

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Admiral Mullen expressed concern Sunday about recent violence in Iraq."]
WASHINGTON (CNN) - The bloody attacks in Iraq last week have raised concerns over a renewal sectarian violence, the chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff said on Sunday.

Interviewed on CNN's "State of the Union," Adm. Mike Mullen said he is "extremely concerned" about recent bombings. More than 100 people were killed and more than 500 wounded in a series of truck bombings in Baghdad on August 19.

It was was the deadliest day since the United States pulled its combat troops from Iraqi cities and towns nearly two months ago and left security in the hands of the Iraqis. And it raised fears of a renewal of destabilizing Sunni-Shiite violence that raged a few years ago in Iraq.

"The key is whether this is an indicator of future sectarian violence," Mullen said. "And certainly, many of us believe that one way that this can come unwound is through sectarian violence."

Mullen said U.S. and Iraqi leadership is "focused" on dealing with such violence.

"We have not seen a lot of this really until last week. And we've seen some positive signs up north, where possibilities existed before, but it's something we're all very, very mindful of and watching very carefully," he said.

Meanwhile, the U.S. military reported the death of a U.S. soldier on Sunday in Baghdad, where he succumbed from combat-related injuries while conducting a patrol, the U.S. military said.

Filed under: Iraq • Mike Mullen • State of the Union
soundoff (13 Responses)
  1. Issano in Florida

    These nutty Republicons still trying to give advice on the war. Had they given George Bush the right advice on the war in Iraq, we would not be there today.
    The American people do not want the party of NO giving any advice to this current administration. The former administration has set this country back decades.
    The policy of the Republican party are too reckless, dangerous, and extreme. the cannot be trusted. Tom Ridge's recentstatement proves that.
    Let's get health care signed without them. Had the Republican been in office, they would have done health care without the Democrat's support. Oh I forgot, they did nothing for health care when they were in office for the past eight years

    August 23, 2009 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  2. JonDie

    Maybe YOU did a poor job of preparing Iraqis to govern themselves.

    August 23, 2009 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  3. Simmy

    The Iraqi army need to grow spines and handle their own issues......Sunnis and Shiites have been fighting since forever.....No amount of US intervention will cure them of ancestral biases......It's way past time for US to leave......Our wonderfully brave and courageous men and women deserve a life too.......Being there is like treading water......Nothing will ever change......Bring them home......God bless President Obama.....Keep him and family safe....God bless this Great America, IJN....

    August 23, 2009 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  4. Dennis

    Like how many more billions are we going to spend to interfer in a family squabble?

    August 23, 2009 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  5. Willy Brown

    Well ADmiral you wanted Obummer you got him. Please resigne so a real military officer can take charge

    August 23, 2009 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  6. PaulC

    Anyone who did not see the increased violence continuing in Iraq had their head firmly planted in their apex.
    Thanks to our very expensive blunder Iraq will be a violent bloody mess for decades. The likely outcome is that Iran will be a very large influence in Iraq's future.

    August 23, 2009 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  7. pc

    Iraq must come up to the plate and defend their own country and leave our troops out of it! We have done enough!

    August 23, 2009 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  8. S M R

    The only people to benefit from this war was Cheney and the Halliburton Co. The losers are Over 5ooo U.S. troops dead and tens of thousands wounded, over 100,000 innocent Iraqies dead and a deficit that the American Taxpayer may never climb out of. THANKS REPUBLICANS.

    August 23, 2009 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  9. terry, va

    Mullen needs to get used to the tuck tail and run philosophy of the hide under the table administration of Obama. If you aren't going to fight get the hell out of there. We'll see them and their buddies here.

    August 23, 2009 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  10. S M R

    A war that never should have happened. MISSION ACCOMPLISHED, I THINK NOT!!!

    August 23, 2009 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  11. Joe Fattal

    Admiral Mullen's concern should have been raised before anyone decided to invade Iraq and leave it in that chaos. Military men don't make good politician, and Politicians don't make good military men. Either one of them should have known the concequences of invading a country in that part of the world. You do not go in in a country such as Iraq which was under one ruler for over 30 years, change the regime in the name of democracy or whatever it may be and leave expecting the country to return to normal. And the irony about it is that Iraq was much safer, hardly we have heard any suicide bombings during Saddam regime, and he had control over all different sectarian factions in Iraq. The US had to go in with all their might and make a mess out of it and now raising the question, Why the violence?. Too late now.. You all should have done your homework.

    August 23, 2009 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  12. Steve A. , New Braunfels , Texas

    Just get out, we aren't going to make any difference anyway in the long haul. As soon as we leave it will go right back where it was before Bush invaded. One war and one president that should have never been.

    August 23, 2009 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  13. T'SAH from Virginia

    The first worry was SADAAM HUSSEIN – "weapons of MASS DESTRUCTION!!! Now we have to worry about the Sunni-Shiite...

    There were no WEAPONS of MASS DESTRUCTIONS. We should have NEVER started the war... Also, there was still violence in IRAG with all of the troops were there... There is ALWAYS going to be VIOLENCE in IRAG... there's unrest in IRAN... there's unrest in Pakistan... there unrest in Afghanistan – need I say more!!!

    Come on now – we must leave IRAG!!!

    August 23, 2009 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |