On Tuesday, the U.S. command issued a report showing its efforts to combat the threat from IEDs (search), which have emerged as the deadliest weapon in the insurgent arsenal. The report, summarizing combat operations around Baghdad (search) during a five-day period, said U.S. forces had found several powerful roadside bombs hidden in two vehicles Saturday.
"We're getting more intelligence that's allowing us to stop more of these things, find more of them. So we're learning from them and the enemy is learning from us, and it's going to be that way for as long as there is an insurgency," said Pentagon spokesman Lawrence Di Rita.
On Friday, soldiers caught three suspected insurgents planting a bomb on the side of a street and defused it. On Thursday, soldiers chased three Iraqi men into a nearby home after a bombing and found bomb-making materials, the military said.
Also on Friday, an IED killed Col. William W. Wood, 44, of Panama City, Fla., an infantry battalion commander. He was promoted posthumously, making him the highest-ranking soldier killed in action in the Iraq conflict, according to the Pentagon.
Bombs have also taken a heavy toll on Iraqis.
On Monday, a powerful roadside bomb exploded among civilians in Basra (search), Iraq's second-largest city and the major metropolis of the Shiite-dominated south, which has witnessed less violence than Sunni areas. Police said 20 were killed and 71 wounded. The attack occurred along a busy street packed with shops and restaurants as people were enjoying an evening out after the daily fast during the Islamic holy month of Ramadan (search).