More violence in Baghdad

BAGHDAD – A car bomb ripped through a wholesale food market in western Baghdad on Sunday, flattening cars and shops and killing at least 30 people in the deadliest of a wave of attacks across

Iraq that killed at least 50 people.  The attack came amid an 11-week-old crackdown by U.S.-led forces intended to bring stability to Baghdad.

As part of that crackdown, U.S. and Iraqi forces raided the Shiite neighborhood of Sadr City early Sunday, uncovering a weapons cache, a torture room and killing at least eight insurgents in a gunbattle, the military said.

In other violence, three U.S. troops were killed in separate attacks, the military said Sunday.

Two Marines were killed Saturday in fighting in Anbar province, a Sunni insurgent stronghold west of Baghdad, and a roadside bomb killed a soldier and wounded four others Friday in western Baghdad, the military said. The deaths raised to at least 3,365 members of the U.S. military who have died since the Iraq war started in March 2003, according to an Associated Press count.

The market blast Sunday erupted about noon in the mixed Sunni-Shiite Baiyaa neighborhood and devastated the area, reducing cars and trucks to their charred skeletons and ripping the roofs and exteriors off shops. In addition to the dead, dozens were injured.

Blood pooled in the dirt streets. Hospital officials said two pickup trucks filled with body parts were brought to the morgue.

“I was waiting near a shop to lift some boxes, when I saw the owner of the shop fall down,” said Satar Hussein, 22, a worker in the market. “I helped him inside the shop, but he was already dead. The next thing I felt was pain in my left shoulder and some people rushing me to the hospital.”

Ali Hamid, 25, the owner of a food store, said he was selling boxes of Pepsi when he was hit with shrapnel in his hand.

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