One of the most valuable resources for keeping informed about what's going on in Iraq is Arthur Chrenkoff's phenomenal series of articles on Good News from Iraq. This monthly feature is now in its 33rd installment, and he has done what most of us don't have the time and resources to do and gone through every possible source, and used his unique contacts inside Iraq to come up with a comprehensive summary of all the positive things which are happening in Iraq which the media around the world chooses to ignore. Not to blame them - they are stuck in the 'if it bleeds, it leads' mentality, and can't sell a lot of papers based on electricity production figures and school openings. But too few people outside of Iraq realize that for every terrorist attack there, a dozen good things are happening to make the lives of everyday Iraqis better.
So here are some quick highlights gleaned from the hundreds of news items Chrenkoff has gathered. Please note that this is a tiny fraction of what he has to report and it's just a summary. If you're astonished by all the good news, he has the full descriptions with links to sources and all his previous installments on his site.
Attacks damaging infrastructure like roads and powerplants are down enormously, from 41 per month last year to an average of 7 per month since February.
Iraqi forces have successfully shut down most terrorist operations in Diyala province, which had been one of the most violentin the country. They are lifting curfews and life is returning to normal. Towns like Bahraz which were under rebel control are not at peace and under government protection.
Mortar attacks are down all over Iraq compared to last year, with a 50% drop in western Mosul where they had been common.
Car bombings are now a thing of the past in Sulaimaniya where Arif Anwar, an ER surgeon commented to a reporter "Car bomb? Are you joking? We don't have anything like that. The biggest problem we have here is car accidents — too many car accidents." He works in a newly built and totally modern wing of the Sulaimaniya hospital.
Also in Sulaimaniyah 1816 new police recruits just graduated from training academies, bringing the total of trained officers there to over 40,000.