The No. 2 US commander in Iraq said Thursday that a seven-month-old security operation has reduced violence by 50 percent in Baghdad, but he acknowledged that civilians were still dying at too high a rate.
Lt. Gen. Raymond Odierno told reporters that car bombs and suicide attacks in Baghdad have fallen to their lowest level in a year, and civilian casualties have dropped from a high of about 32 to 12 per day.
"What we do know is that there has been a decline in civilian casualties, but I would say again that it's not at the level we want it to be," Odierno said. "There are still way too many civilian casualties inside of Baghdad and Iraq."