Friday, May 5, 2017

The Islamic State's Last Stand In Iraq Will Be In Anbar Province

The Iraqi Army has been pushing IS out of Mosul, the battle for which is pictured here, and the group is retreated to camps in the desert (Reuters)

Middle East Eye: In 'underground desert cities' Islamic State fighters lie in wait for Iraqi army

Thousands of IS fighters have retreated to the desert of Anbar, where they are launching deadly attacks against vulnerable non-combat troops.

Having secured the towns and villages of Anbar province, and with commanders firmly focused on the battle for the city of Mosul, Iraqi forces are now having to contend with a new Islamic State (IS) group tactic – desert ambushes.

Under the sand, thousands of IS militants are lying in wait, in underground cities and military bases, military sources say, and are launching a campaign to unnerve and disorientate the Iraqi army, already jaded after years of battling the militant group.

On Sunday, at least 10 Iraqi soldiers were killed, and dozens more wounded, when a group of IS combatants attacked a 1st division army base near Rutba, in the Anbar desert.

Read more ....

WNU Editor: The Iraqi army is deploying to meet this threat .... Abadi deploys more troops to western Anbar (NRT). Anbar province has always been the Sunni heartland of Iraq .... and where many supporters of the Islamic State reside. Considering the geography and vast expanse of this region, this is not going to be an easy war for Baghdad to plan and implement..

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