This is not good. Some news stories recently have given me the strong impression that the world focus on the centres of drama in Iraq - Fallujah and Najaf - has obscured a worsening crisis in the countryside, and that the coalition is quite happy that this is so.
""We've had to take extraordinary steps to get stuff to them, fighting to open up some of the routes," Brig. Gen. Mark Kimmitt, the deputy director of military operations, said in a telephone interview from Baghdad about clearing the supply routes.
General Kimmitt told reporters that none of the routes in Iraq were now classified by the military as "black" or "red," meaning too dangerous to use. But he said most were "amber," a classification that means convoy operators assume "a certain measure of risk." He added, "It is certainly not green yet."