Video: Targeting Iraqi police
updated 6/20/2005 3:03:58 PM ET 2005-06-20T19:03:58

The violence against Iraqi police officers continued on Monday when an attacker dressed as a policeman drove a suicide car bomb into a large group of traffic officers in the northern Kurdish city of Irbil. The attack killed 15 and wounded more than 100.

The strategy of killing large groups of police has been one that insurgents have continued to employ. On Monday, Retired Army Colonel Jack Jacobs, an MSNBC analyst, spoke with MSNBC's Amy Robach about why police are a repeated target.

Jacobs said there are several factors behind the strategy but is based on the fact that attacking the security breaks down security.

"If they get the security situation under control, they'll be able to get the intelligence to go after the bad guy," he said "The kind of confidence that is required among the population to really develop the security situation better. 

"Secondly, there's a political component that says the country does not agree generally, that you ought to have a country.  They're happy with it in the North when the Kurds were semi-independent. The Shias are no problem, the Sunni Triangle is a big problem," Jacobs said. "They were big losers when we won the war and unless you can bring those guys in, you're going to have two or maybe three different countries all within the borders of Iraq."

Jacobs said the different ethnic and religious makeup throughout the different regions of Iraq have also greatly impacted police recruiting and the ability to create security, which ultimately undermines everything the government is trying to accomplish.

"In the north (they're) fine because they are in control of the situation.  In the far south, it's fine in the Shia (areas), not a problem.  But in the Sunni Triangle ... and border areas, where you have ethnic and religious groups sharing the area ... it's extremely difficult.

"The confidence in the people is not endless," Jacobs added. "Until you can get control of the Sunni security situation in the central part of Iraq, which has the majority of the population, you're going to have a big problem.

Watch the entire interview between MSNBC's Amy Robach and Jack Jacobs by clicking the video link above. MSNBC Live with Amy Robach and Randy Meier can be seen weekdays from 9 a.m.-Noon.

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