Why is the violence increasing?
Juan Cole's explanation makes sense.
We should be clear why these bombings are taking place. It is because
Bush's policy in Iraq was total victory, along with his Shiite and Kurdish
allies, over the previously dominant Sunni Arabs. Bush did this thing as a zero
sum game, one where there is only one pie and if one person gets a bigger piece,
someone else gets a tiny sliver. The Sunni Arabs-- among the best educated and
most capable people in the country-- were offered the tiny sliver. They won't
accept US troops in their country for the most part, and won't accept reduction
to a small powerless minority. They have succeeded in provoking the Shiites to
form guerrilla groups and engage in reprisal killings, as well, as a way of
destabilizing the country. Bush's allies won't share power and wealth with them,
and Bush himself keeps pushing for what he calls "victory." Today is what his
victory looks like after nearly 4 years, and it is highly unlikely to look
different any time soon.
Zero sum game?
More like 80% solution "sum game". Bush has allied himself with the Shiia and, consequently the Shiia Militia...that's bad news for the Sunni.
What I don't understand, is why Bush would alaign himself with Shiia when that will only serve to antagonize our traditional ally, Saudi Arabia, which is overwhelmingly Sunni. The only immediate explanation seems to be that the Shiia are, from Bush's perspective anyway, the ONLY GAME IN TOWN. Nevermind that the Shiia are natural allies with our other "Axis of Evil" sworn enemy, Iran. Nevermind that it creates more bloodshed, rekindles centuries-old rivalries and ignites more blood revenge.