Since the Iraqi government's battle with the Islamic State in Iraq (ISIL, ISIS, or AQI) in Anbar province and Sunni militants throughout the country hundreds of people have lost their lives. The carnage is continuing into March.
Another town or most of it has fallen under control of Sunni militants associated with the Islamic State in Iraq and Levant (ISIL). The group also operates in Syria and has taken over the city of Fallujah in Iraq and part of the provincial capital Ramadi.
While facing continuing protests for a crackdown in Sunni dominated Anbar province and other Sunni areas, the government of Nouri al-Maliki now faces Al Qaeda in Iraq which has captured parts of two major cities.
A recently published study has reported a "staggering rise" in birth defects and miscarriages among babies and women living in parts of Iraq that were heavily exposed to toxic metals as a result of the US-led invasion and occupation of that country.
New research set to be published this week shows birth defects of newborn babies in the Iraqi city of Fallujah have reached epidemic proportions since the city was annihilated six years ago by the US military.
Six years after severe fighting raged in Fallujah between U.S. Marines and Iraqi insurgents the effects of the battle still linger. Specifically, there is increasing anecdotal evidence that birth defects are increasing at an alarming rate.