Church bells ring anew in freed Mosul district

An Iraqi woman and child stand just outside a shelter built for refugees driven from their homes by Islamic extremists. (Photo, caption courtesy of Voice of the Martyrs)

 

Iraq (MNN) — Iraqi forces continued a slow-but-steady advance in more of Mosul’s eastern districts last week, according to The Washington Post. Several eastern areas of Mosul have already been liberated from ISIS’ grip. But the whole city’s freedom could still take months to secure.

Emily Fuentes with Open Doors USA says some displaced families from Mosul are trying to decide if and when they should return to the secured districts. Continue reading

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

Obama admits US lacks ‘complete strategy’ in Iraq

President acknowledges military setbacks in fight against IS, urges Baghdad to allow more Sunnis in campaign against terror group

ELMAU, Germany (AP) — Acknowledging military setbacks, President Barack Obama said Monday the United States still lacks a “complete strategy” for training Iraqi forces to fight the Islamic State. He urged Iraq’s government to allow more of the nation’s Sunnis to join the campaign against the violent militants.

Nearly one year after American troops started returning to Iraq to assist local forces, Obama said the Islamic State remains “nimble, aggressive and opportunistic.” He touted “significant progress” in areas where the US has trained Iraqis to fight but said forces without US assistance are often ill-equipped and suffer from poor morale. Continue reading

ISIS advances on Baghdad, faces little resistance

The Islamic State continued its push toward Baghdad and on other fronts. Saturday, the group took the Iraq-Syrian town of Husaybah on the Tigris, rounding off its control of the border and the river and gaining an easy and rapid route for transferring reinforcements between the two countries. Continue reading

The US starts feeding intelligence to Iran-led forces in Tikrit

The United States Monday began providing Iraqi forces fighting the Islamic State in Tikrit with critical surveillance and reconnaissance intelligence support, a Defense Department official disclosed.

Continue reading

%d bloggers like this: