Iraqi counterterrorism forces walk in Falluja, Iraq, June 26, 2016. REUTERS/Thaier Al-Sudani
Military Times: The Iraqis' win over ISIS in Fallujah was considerably easier than expected
The American-backed Iraqi effort to oust Islamic State militants from their stronghold in Fallujah turned out to be far easier than many U.S. officials initially feared.
“Once they got through the hard-candy shell and into the chewy center, things went much more quickly,” Pentagon spokesman Jeff Davis said Monday. “It was really a heavy fight along the front line. But once they penetrated that, it seemed to go very quickly.”
The five-week operation officially ended Sunday when top Iraqi commanders declared the city "fully liberated" from ISIS.
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Update #1: Quick Fallujah victory bodes well for Mosul (USA Today)
Update #2: After Fallujah, Where Next for the Anti-ISIS Coalition? (Newsweek)
Update #3: Cracks show inside Islamic State's shrinking caliphate (Reuters)
WNU Editor: The win may have been easier than expected and a surprise to everyone, but the retributions is surprising no one .... They Survived ISIS, Then Disappeared (Daily Beast). More here .... Fallujah Homes Burned and Looted (AP).