The big Mosul offensive is stuck, halted by ISIS

Less than a day after its launch, the big Mosul offensive prepared for more than a year by the US, the Iraqi army, Kurdish forces and others, ground to a halt Tuesday Oct. 17, debkafile’s military sources report – although none of the parties admitted as much.  Iraqi Prime Minister Haidar Al-Abadi said his troops were busy opening up corridors for some million civilians to escape, while US sources suggested that the Islamic State would use primitive chemical weapons against the advancing Iraqi and Kurdish forces.

Both had the ring of cover stories to account for the spearhead forces, the Iraq army’s 9th Armored Division and the Federal Police special anti-terror units, being thrown back Tuesday on their way to Mosul from the east and the south, while still 10-15km short of the city. They sustained heavy losses in lives and hardware.

The 9th Division and its newly-supplied heavy US Abrahams tanks were stopped at al-Hamdaniyah outside Mosul and retreated, recalling a previous defeat at ISIS hands in June 2014, when troops of the same division fled under Islamist attack, leaving their tanks behind. Continue reading

Iran-backed Hizbullah shows off U.S. Abrams tank on YouTube

WASHINGTON — Iran’s leading proxy is promoting it acquisition of a U.S.-origin main battle tank.

A Hizbullah video showed a 60-vehicle convoy in Iraq with the M1A1 main battle tank, Long War Journal reported. The video, posted on YouTube, showed an Abrams MBT as well as the U.S.-origin M113 armored personnel carriers and Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected or MRAP. Continue reading