The Battle for Mosul
Marie Colvin reported in the Times of London this weekend about the intense fighting in Mosul between an amalgam of U.S. and Iraqi forces and al-Qaeda-in-Mesopotamia fighters. The assault appears to be unfolding similarly to other initiatives: cordon of the city, followed by the establishment of movement control measures like checkpoints, followed by raids on insurgent strongholds and targeted individuals.
Colvin reported the tactics are working and that the U.S.-Iraqi coalition has scored a number of important successes in the past 10 days, such as the killing of an Al Qaeda leader who called himself the "Emir of Mosul." Momentum appears to be on the U.S. side. But Mosul is a large city, and it will be difficult to clear it entirely -- and to follow this initiative with successful efforts in the political, economic and reconstruction areas. As one of Iraq's three largest cities, Mosul's fate matters a great deal. Keep your eye on it.
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Posted by: Gary E. Masters | July 7, 2008 5:09 AM
Posted by: Bill Keller | July 7, 2008 6:42 AM
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