Despite Tuesday’s deadly suicide bombing at the heart of Iraqi security, the US is sticking to its withdrawal time table.
At least 59 recruits died in the attack, just two weeks before America begins its pullout of combat troops.
However the outgoing US Ambassador to Baghdad, Christopher Hill, is confident the insurgency is losing its grip.
“Al Qaeda in Iraq is not able to hold on to a single building or city block unlike in the past,” he said. “I don’t think there is much support at all. On the contrary, there is a general revulsion at their behaviour.”
The bloodshed has added to tensions that have simmered following an inconclusive election more than five months ago that has yet to produce an Iraqi government.
Insurgents have recently been targeting Iraqi police and soldiers as they prepare to take full responsibility for security in September.