WASHINGTON — In Iraq, several car bombs went off in coordinated fashion, wounding more than 150 people and killing at least 50 this past week. Some worry that Iraq is quickly destabilizing into a sectarian civil war , much like Syria.
Reuters reports  that the car bombs went off in mostly Shi’a Muslim areas of the capital city of Baghdad. It appears to be an al-Qaeda-coordinate attack on Iraqis that were celebrating the end of the Muslim month of fasting called Ramadan.
There were 12 separate but almost simultaneous car bombs that targeted areas such as marketplaces, shopping streets and parks, where large amounts of people would gather to celebrate Eid, or the end of Ramadan. These attacks marked a continued escalation of violence  instigated by the al-Qaeda Iraqi branch.
Last month, over 1,000 Iraqis were killed in this type of violence  and was the highest number of Iraqi dead since 2008, said the United Nations.
Some say that this renewed violence is because Sunni Islamists are trying to wrest power and control away from the Shi’a government, all due to the Syrian civil war and the advances of Sunni Muslim rebels  against the Alawite and Shi’a Syrian government.