This could be a scary time in the West as ISIS’ leadership encourages revenge attacks.
A military operation to recapture the Iraqi city of Mosul from so-called Islamic State (IS) has begun, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi says.
An offensive to retake the city, Iraq’s second largest, has been planned for months.
Mosul has been under IS control since June 2014.
The UN has warned that the humanitarian impact could be “enormous”, and possibly affect up to 1.2 million people living in and around the city.
“Today I declare the start of these victorious operations to free you from the violence and terrorism of Daesh,” he said, using another name for IS.
St. Michael the Archangel, pray for the soldiers, and may God have mercy on them and everyone.
praying for a successful victory to recapture Mosul. praying for the protection of the soldiers against ISIS.
Deep fractures divide the forces which will participate in the re-taking of Mosul
The forces in the fragmented anti-Islamic State alliance, a mix of Iraqi special forces and regular troops, the Kurdish Peshmerga, and Sunni and Shiite militias who number a total of 60,000, are each positioning themselves to reap the benefits of a post-Islamic State Mosul. The most dangerous element among these forces is the network backed by Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guard Corps (IRGC).
The Iraqi Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF), an umbrella organization of Shiite, Sunnis, Christian, and Yazidi militias formed following the fatwa of Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani in 2014 to drive the Islamic State from Iraq, is controlled and dominated by IRGC-backed proxies. In an effort to rein in these militias, Prime Minister Abadi has created a parallel military organization for the PMF in the security apparatus outside of the command structure. However, the PMF remains riddled with Iranian-supported militias, and its key leaders are beholden to IRGC-Qods Force’s commander, Qassem Soleimani.
The PMF alongside the Kurdish Peshmarga have reportedly agreed to clear and hold areas in the outskirts of the city, while Iraqi Security Forces backed by US airstrikes lead the brunt of the operation to take the city. This was implemented to assuage local Sunni Arab population concerns about vengeful retribution and abuse from the militias, though there is no guarantee and this has not stopped Shiite militias from abusing the local populations attempting to flee an area, such as Fallujah this past summer
Meanwhile, Shiite militias have threatened to attack Turkish forces near Mosul, highlighting a risk factor that can escalate and affect the siege on Mosul. About 500 Turkish troops are positioned in Bashiqa, a town north of Mosul, where they have been training troops there against the wishes of Baghdad, but with the permission of the Kurdistan Regional Government. Abadi has demanded Turkey to leave and not participate in Mosul, but Turkish President Recep Erdogan has refused, voicing his opposition to the PMF’s participation and suggesting that Turkey will play a role in Mosul with or without Baghdad’s permission. This could be more political posturing from Erdogan, who wants to expand his influence in Iraq and strengthen the hand of Turkish-backed factions, especially as Erdogan is boxed in in northern Syria and is silent towards the onslaught in Aleppo because of his deal with the Kremlin. There is nevertheless the risk that attacks against Turkish troops can draw Ankara further into Iraq.
Today they say they are retaking Mosul but very soon they will use Mosul as a place to launch a larger invasion of Syria. Just wait for it.
Possibly, however the portion of Syria which is closest to Mosul, or to which the roads from Mosul lead, are already under Kurdish control. Moreover, even after Mosul falls, ISIS would still need to be uprooted from other parts of Iraq.
(A map, dated 10 October, shows the current zones of control. Scroll about halfway down this news article to see that map)
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness: for they will be filled. (5:6)
Blessed are the merciful: for they will be shown mercy. (5:7)
Blessed are the peacemakers: for they will be called children of God. (5:9)
Pray for all involved to bring Peace in the Middle East
Prayers for all!
Lord, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy.
If, indeed, ISIS is removed from Mosul, it will still remain to be seen who ends up in control of it. Right now, the most likely is that the Kurds will retain a piece of it, mainly on the outskirts, but that Iranian-led forces will control the rest of it. That won’t turn out well, because Iran is hated by the Sunni populace at least as much as ISIS is hated.
Just maybe ISIS will get finally get kicked out.
Military forces retake part of Mosul in operation to defeat ISIS, freeing at least 10 villages. abcn.ws/2dJh0q0
[quote=ABC News]At one point, ABC News reporters on the front lines witnessed a lone vehicle speeding across a valley toward their position. The car erupted into flames moments later, but the cause of the blast was not immediately clear. Car bombs are a major tool for ISIS and could play a large role in this fight.
Earlier today, the official Twitter feed of the Popular Mobilization Unites claimed that 12 suicide vehicle borne improvised explosive devices had been launched by ISIS against the besieging forces. The claim was that all 12 were defeated before doing serious damage.
There are also reports of ISIS suicide bombers trying to infiltrate the besieging units.