Al Qaeda says it’s behind coordinated car bomb and other attacks in 13 Iraqi cities this week. At least 56 people were killed. American military officers were caught off guard by the attacks, which come less than a week after the number of U.S. troops fell below 50,000 as America ends combat operations in Iraq. Two of the bombs hit police stations in Baghdad and Kut, southeast of the capital. Insurgent umbrella group the Islamic State of Iraq cheered the attacks on its website, saying it had targeted “the headquarters, centers, and security barriers of the apostate army and police.” Warnings that militants would try to capitalize on Iraqi political parties’ inability to form a government, the holy month of Ramadan, and the U.S. exit appear to have been correct. Some analysts, like Tom Ricks, argue that Iraq will get more violent in coming years as it is forced to deal with key issues that have not been addressed, such as how to share oil revenue.