U.S. forces launched attacks in the Baghdad slum of Sadr City (search) early Monday, killing at least two people and wounding 46, including women and children, hospital officials and witnesses said.

Maj. Phil Smith of the Army' 1st Cavalry Division, which controls the area, had no immediate information.

Residents said loud explosions echoed throughout the night and that U.S. jets repeatedly swooped low over the sprawling slum, a hotbed of insurgents loyal to radical Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr (search).

Dr. Qassem Saddam of the Imam Ali hospital in Sadr City said 2 people were killed and 40 wounded, including 15 women and nine children.

U.S. forces recently launched an extensive crackdown in Sadr City in an effort to subdue al-Sadr's al-Mahdi militia.