A superb number of posts from the Belmont Club, as usual. I thought this one was particularly good.
Apart from its symbolic significance to the Shi'ites, the pilgrimage to Karbala must constitute a prime target in a month full of prime targets for the insurgency. In a period when Iraq is preparing to hold a plebiscite on its constitution and the insurgents seek revenge for Tal-Afar, the pilgrimage is like a cherry sitting on whipped-cream topped fudge. Not only that, but as Bill Roggio points out, there is a whole slew of offensive activity against insurgent in Anbar, Haditha and Qaim and even Samarra and Ramadi. The enemy must react. Some sources have warned of a Great Ramadan Offensive aimed at getting back at the Coalition for all the knocks the invincible (are you listening George Galloway?) insurgency has received.