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Thread: Battle of Mosul - 2016

  1. #201
    Quote Originally Posted by MillerEP View Post
    I get what you're saying, and I'm familiar with the history of modern terrorism, I used to have to give briefings on it regularly to all deploying units as part of the Anti-terrorism, force protection briefings. I'm not sure if you're simply stating it won't work because it's not a good idea or it won't work because we won't be doing that, but I can say the US is not going to pull up stakes in the ME anytime soon. Also, it's not like Iraq is the only ME country we currently have a presence in. We still maintain bases in Kuwait, Qatar, Israel, Bahrain, UAE, Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan, and Oman. One or two more next door to Iran and Syria won't make them hate us any more/any less.
    Israel is a bad example because her very existence on what they see as Arab land is a massive source of volatility in the region. And yes, our continued presence in Saudi Arabia particularly is and always will be inflammatory. In Bahrain, probably not so much. But Iraq is different because it is ostensibly a democracy.

    What if they don't want us there? We signed an agreement to leave before, so we left. Wouldn't staying on in spite of that have amounted to a re-invasion of the country? If they had stayed then maybe ISIS wouldn't have expanded beyond Syria but the insurgency against U.S. forces would have been ongoing and many more American lives and limbs would've been lost in the mean time.

    ISIS is being beaten back without massive numbers of U.S. troops on the ground so I don't think it will ever come to it. But if we had a large footprint in the country then, at any time of stability, an Iraqi leader would move to demonstrate that he's not a puppet of the U.S. and ask us to leave. And unless we want to admit make it look like that was what we were after all along, we'll have to oblige. Democracy is tricky business. We created a Shia bridge from Syria to Iran and the new Iraqi government is always going to answer to Tehran first. They'll use us as long as our goals match theirs and when they don't, they'll want us out. And then they'll go on persecuting the minority Sunnis who ruled them so harshly for so many years.

  • #202
    Quote Originally Posted by Hollywood Colt View Post
    yes we are continuing to enrich families who propagate a religious sect whose fundamental tenet is our ultimate destruction. so again, how's that working out for everybody?
    That's just one drop in the ocean of oil revenue that funds the Saudi Royal Family and is the engine that drives the whole goddamn system. The cancer is in Riyadh. But we're economically prevented from addressing that problem. So instead we fight symptoms instead of the actual disease.

  • #203
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    Quote Originally Posted by WhatTheBuck View Post
    Israel is a bad example because her very existence on what they see as Arab land is a massive source of volatility in the region. And yes, our continued presence in Saudi Arabia particularly is and always will be inflammatory. In Bahrain, probably not so much. But Iraq is different because it is ostensibly a democracy.

    What if they don't want us there? We signed an agreement to leave before, so we left. Wouldn't staying on in spite of that have amounted to a re-invasion of the country? If they had stayed then maybe ISIS wouldn't have expanded beyond Syria but the insurgency against U.S. forces would have been ongoing and many more American lives and limbs would've been lost in the mean time.

    ISIS is being beaten back without massive numbers of U.S. troops on the ground so I don't think it will ever come to it. But if we had a large footprint in the country then, at any time of stability, an Iraqi leader would move to demonstrate that he's not a puppet of the U.S. and ask us to leave. And unless we want to admit make it look like that was what we were after all along, we'll have to oblige. Democracy is tricky business. We created a Shia bridge from Syria to Iran and the new Iraqi government is always going to answer to Tehran first. They'll use us as long as our goals match theirs and when they don't, they'll want us out. And then they'll go on persecuting the minority Sunnis who ruled them so harshly for so many years.
    I'm operating on the assumption that they allow us. We obviously won't stay without their permission, and we didn't have an agreement to leave, we actually left because we couldn't agree on a SOFA agreement. When we left and ISIS took over, their army and police forces fled in droves, which didn't just open up our eyes but theirs as well, which is why they asked us to come back. I foresee that extending, if only to continue to give them a backbone for a few years until their hold on the Sunni areas strengthens, which will take a few years. After that it's easy to extend the leases.

  • #204
    Are you saying you think we'll send in tens of thousands of new troops to man bases all over the country, in Shiite and Sunni and Kurdish regions alike? Or just sticking with a few thousand "advisers?" I doubt the former will (nor should) happen.

    We'll see. I think any long term, large scale stay will result in a slow tic-tic-tic of American casualties to IEDs and car bombs and suicide attacks and every other form of insurgent warfare until they either ask us to leave or we just get tired of it and leave on our own.

    Iran still hates us. Maybe you're too young to remember the Iranian Revolution and the hostage crisis. Now that we eliminated their counterweight in the region, their sphere of political influence has been magnified a hundred fold. They're not going to let the Iraqis agree to a bunch of American bases from which we could launch an assault on Iran. (Which we'll probably never do because that wouldn't be the turkey shoot that Iraq was.)

  • #205
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    Quote Originally Posted by DDD Dad View Post
    Well I invented Post-It Notes.
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  • #206
    Quote Originally Posted by WhatTheBuck View Post
    Are you saying you think we'll send in tens of thousands of new troops to man bases all over the country, in Shiite and Sunni and Kurdish regions alike? Or just sticking with a few thousand "advisers?" I doubt the former will (nor should) happen.

    We'll see. I think any long term, large scale stay will result in a slow tic-tic-tic of American casualties to IEDs and car bombs and suicide attacks and every other form of insurgent warfare until they either ask us to leave or we just get tired of it and leave on our own.

    Iran still hates us. Maybe you're too young to remember the Iranian Revolution and the hostage crisis. Now that we eliminated their counterweight in the region, their sphere of political influence has been magnified a hundred fold. They're not going to let the Iraqis agree to a bunch of American bases from which we could launch an assault on Iran. (Which we'll probably never do because that wouldn't be the turkey shoot that Iraq was.)
    I remember that, but that was a long time ago. I agree with you to the extent that their olds hate us. Their youngs see what the West can offer and want some. And while Iraq was a counter to Iran and we arguably cut off our nose to spite our face by ousting Sadaam, what we are seeing now is Saudi and the Sunni coalition it has put together filling in that vacuum to some extent.

  • #207
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    Some highlights from today:
    The Kurds liberated Batnaya fully and flew their flag over it. You'll notice the cross in the picture and in the windows, Batnaya was always an Assyrian town populated by thousands of Chaldean Catholics before ISIS moved in:


    The Kurds also entered Faziliye village, after having it surrounded the past couple of days. In the South, the Iraqi forces are outside of Munirah, trying to reach a site where ISIS conducted Mass Executions.

    Meanwhile, the battle just outside Mosul's eastern side is still continuing, the Shia'a and some smaller Christian militias (different from the PMU in the East) are still slowly convoying in from the West, and US troops are now in Qayyarah Air Base rebuilding it. There are also reports that ISIS inside of Mosul are getting scared, and are starting to shave their beards and change their clothes to blend into the population more.

    US CENTCOM General Votel came out today to say that since the operation kicked off last week they estimate upward of 900 ISIS fighters have been killed.
    Last edited by MillerEP; 10-27-2016 at 10:44 AM.

  • #208
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    Quote Originally Posted by Austin Orange View Post
    Im with General Patton. I don't like buying the same real estate twice. SMH.
    Quote Originally Posted by TJ View Post
    I wonder if they'll do the same thing when they have to re-capture Fallujah again next year.
    I hate it when I capture a city in CIV III and it later flips back. Really pisses me off.

  • #209
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fightin' Buck View Post
    I hate it when I capture a city in CIV III and it later flips back. Really pisses me off.
    That's usually when I reload an autosave a couple turns back and prevent that from happening. Two things that I never allow in any Civilization session 1) You don't build on my continent and 2) I never lose a city.

  • #210
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    Quote Originally Posted by MillerEP View Post
    There are also reports that ISIS inside of Mosul are getting scared, and are starting to shave their beards and change their clothes to blend into the population more.

    US CENTCOM General Votel came out today to say that since the operation kicked off last week they estimate upward of 900 ISIS fighters have been killed.
    Waitaminute! They're scared?

    We've been told these fanatic ISIS jihadists aren't afraid to die in the name of their allah - that to do so was a first class ticket to their version of Heaven. Isn't that why they are in it?

    Not trying to be snarky or cynical, but what with all the big talk from their mullahs/preachers/whatever, these "fighters" are supposed to be some kind of superheroes who will fight to the death. At least that's what we've been seeing in the media for 15 years.

  • #211
    Bullies faced with bloodied noses get serious real quick.

  • #212
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    How did the Kurds become such bad ass mother $#@!ers with just your basic conventional arms?

  • #213
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    Quote Originally Posted by Armybrat View Post
    Waitaminute! They're scared?

    We've been told these fanatic ISIS jihadists aren't afraid to die in the name of their allah - that to do so was a first class ticket to their version of Heaven. Isn't that why they are in it?

    Not trying to be snarky or cynical, but what with all the big talk from their mullahs/preachers/whatever, these "fighters" are supposed to be some kind of superheroes who will fight to the death. At least that's what we've been seeing in the media for 15 years.
    The ones who aren't afraid to die, have been killed.

    The rest are Tim in accounting, Larry in the motor pool, Janice in housekeeping, etc.

  • #214
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    Quote Originally Posted by Armybrat View Post
    Waitaminute! They're scared?

    We've been told these fanatic ISIS jihadists aren't afraid to die in the name of their allah - that to do so was a first class ticket to their version of Heaven. Isn't that why they are in it?

    Not trying to be snarky or cynical, but what with all the big talk from their mullahs/preachers/whatever, these "fighters" are supposed to be some kind of superheroes who will fight to the death. At least that's what we've been seeing in the media for 15 years.
    Maybe they ran out of meth

  • #215
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    stupid guy post alert...

    i honestly had no idea there were significant populations of christians in the ME, especially that area. how are they not slaughtered? i would think a cross would be a big ol middle finger to those people.

  • #216
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    Quote Originally Posted by erikestradaschesthair View Post
    stupid guy post alert...

    i honestly had no idea there were significant populations of christians in the ME, especially that area. how are they not slaughtered? i would think a cross would be a big ol middle finger to those people.
    Maybe every Muslim isn't a bloodthirsty killer?

  • #217
    Quote Originally Posted by AtomHeartBevo View Post
    The ones who aren't afraid to die, have been killed.

    The rest are Tim in accounting, Larry in the motor pool, Janice in housekeeping, etc.
    Janice in accounting don't give a $#@!. She don't give a $#@!.


  • #218
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    I find it absolutely incomprehensible that we didn't play the long game over ten years ago and didn't anticipate this $#@!storm from happening. Hell, the Sunnis and Shiites have been fighting for centuries. Throw in the Kurds and various tribes throughout Iraq and to think that a US style democracy could be implemented is the height of hubris.

    About halfway through Black Flags, the Rise of Isis. Miller.. how accurate is the book?

  • #219
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    Quote Originally Posted by DDD Dad View Post
    Janice in accounting don't give a $#@!. She don't give a $#@!.

    Janice in accounting puts out. Fact.

  • #220
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    From liveuamap
    "#SDF forces captured Mazare' al-Hawarin, north of Jabal Na'if, from #FSA. Russian jets reportedly prevented airstrikes by Turkish airforce"

    Interesting.

  • #221
    Quote Originally Posted by RayDog View Post
    From liveuamap
    "#SDF forces captured Mazare' al-Hawarin, north of Jabal Na'if, from #FSA. Russian jets reportedly prevented airstrikes by Turkish airforce"

    Interesting.
    The Russians jumping into this just has bad times written all over it. Especially once this carrier group of theirs makes its way into the fray. I can see NATO getting led into a conflict with Russia via Turkey not taking any Russian $#@!. They already shot down a Russian aircraft once. I'm sure they won't be afraid to do it again.

  • #222
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    I read that one of their spokesman said that the carrier would not participate in the Syrian war. I assume their catapult is broken or something.

  • #223
    Quote Originally Posted by RayDog View Post
    I read that one of their spokesman said that the carrier would not participate in the Syrian war. I assume their catapult is broken or something.
    Lol. When did we start believing Russian spokesmen?

  • #224
    I guess there was that one time, back in the early 90s when we all though Russia was going to join the first world. But that moment passed pretty quickly.

    https://youtu.be/n4RjJKxsamQ

  • #225
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    Quote Originally Posted by RayDog View Post
    I read that one of their spokesman said that the carrier would not participate in the Syrian war. I assume their catapult is broken or something.
    Good rubber bands are hard to come by.

  • #226
    asshat Theo Huxtable might be a clever chap. or know the right people. know what i mean, nudge nudge? Theo Huxtable might be a clever chap. or know the right people. know what i mean, nudge nudge? Theo Huxtable might be a clever chap. or know the right people. know what i mean, nudge nudge? Theo Huxtable might be a clever chap. or know the right people. know what i mean, nudge nudge? Theo Huxtable might be a clever chap. or know the right people. know what i mean, nudge nudge? Theo Huxtable might be a clever chap. or know the right people. know what i mean, nudge nudge? Theo Huxtable might be a clever chap. or know the right people. know what i mean, nudge nudge? Theo Huxtable might be a clever chap. or know the right people. know what i mean, nudge nudge? Theo Huxtable might be a clever chap. or know the right people. know what i mean, nudge nudge? Theo Huxtable might be a clever chap. or know the right people. know what i mean, nudge nudge? Theo Huxtable might be a clever chap. or know the right people. know what i mean, nudge nudge? Theo Huxtable's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Armybrat View Post
    Waitaminute! They're scared?

    We've been told these fanatic ISIS jihadists aren't afraid to die in the name of their allah - that to do so was a first class ticket to their version of Heaven. Isn't that why they are in it?

    Not trying to be snarky or cynical, but what with all the big talk from their mullahs/preachers/whatever, these "fighters" are supposed to be some kind of superheroes who will fight to the death. At least that's what we've been seeing in the media for 15 years.
    Good point. Hell, aren't the now infidels for shaving their beards? Isn't that beheading worthy?

  • #227
    At the beginning, most of the ISIS grunts probably did buy into all their leaders' $#@!. Along the way, they just stated acting like a Mexican cartel, using extortion and ransom to maintain power.

  • #228
    Quote Originally Posted by Chad $#@! View Post
    I guess there was that one time, back in the early 90s when we all though Russia was going to join the first world. But that moment passed pretty quickly.

    https://youtu.be/n4RjJKxsamQ
    Another good one:

  • #229
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lidig8r View Post
    I find it absolutely incomprehensible that we didn't play the long game over ten years ago and didn't anticipate this $#@!storm from happening. Hell, the Sunnis and Shiites have been fighting for centuries. Throw in the Kurds and various tribes throughout Iraq and to think that a US style democracy could be implemented is the height of hubris.

    About halfway through Black Flags, the Rise of Isis. Miller.. how accurate is the book?
    The people who made the call to invade Iraq had other reasons/motives to cash in consider. They didn't give a $#@! about the long game because they'd be long gone after 2008 with their interests met.

  • #230
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    Quote Originally Posted by erikestradaschesthair View Post
    stupid guy post alert...

    i honestly had no idea there were significant populations of christians in the ME, especially that area. how are they not slaughtered? i would think a cross would be a big ol middle finger to those people.
    Assyrians have been in that region since 2500BC, and Syriac Christianity has been around since almost the beginning of Christendom. They've mostly been marginalized throughout most of their history, and survived under Muslim rule for centuries under the millet system (Then the Brits and Iraqi Monarchy which was a British puppet and then Saddam). During Saddam's reign Iraq was probably one of the most western leaning, and although a minority in his country he actually had a couple Christian Ba'ath party members in high positions of his government. Originally The Ba'ath Party was a secular socialist party, so Christians weren't actively persecuted, Saddam didn't turn into a $#@! until his ethnic cleansings of Kurds. Also, since most of them lived up in the North of Iraq, around Nineveh and Mosul so most of them fell under the protection of the Kurds which was backed by a no fly zone protected by US and British warplanes for a couple decades.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lidig8r View Post
    I find it absolutely incomprehensible that we didn't play the long game over ten years ago and didn't anticipate this $#@!storm from happening. Hell, the Sunnis and Shiites have been fighting for centuries. Throw in the Kurds and various tribes throughout Iraq and to think that a US style democracy could be implemented is the height of hubris.

    About halfway through Black Flags, the Rise of Isis. Miller.. how accurate is the book?
    I don't know, I haven't read that book.

  • #231
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    Some Highlights from today:

    The militias heading in from the West are preparing to assault the city of Tal Afar, which is about 60km away from Mosul. In the East, the Iraqi Special Forces have halted and are cordoning off about 4-5km from Mosul in order to wait from the South and West to catch up and tighten the noose before fully moving into the city proper. They might have to wait a few days, because as mentioned previously, the West is a good ~60 miles from the city, and in the South they are ~15-20 miles away. However the South is slowly moving in still, as they seized Hamzah today in the South and the village of Karez in the Southeast.

    A UN report also came out to say that ISIS executed 232 civilians near Mosul last week alone, and they fear the number could be higher this week.

  • #232
    http://www.wbur.org/hereandnow/2016/...iving-car-bomb
    Nice interview I heard on the radio earlier today with a NYTimes reporter on an incredible first hand account of the battle.

    http://mobile.nytimes.com/2016/10/27...iving-car-bomb
    The article has several photos and a couple videos. The reporter was injured in one car bombing.

  • #233
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    Recap from this weekend:

    North - Peshmerga cleared six villages, to include the village of Talkayf.

    East - ISOF has breached the outskirts of Mosul in the Karma area, making them only 800-900 meters from the city center. Iraq's 9th division have gone into Hay Saddam and Hay Karkoukli, right outside the city of Mosul. Additionally over the weekend, they cleard the village of Bazwaia

    South - The fighting is a little stronger here, while the PMU have captured the following cities so far (as of the 29th):


    West - Not much has come out of the West recently, but they joined the fray this weekend by assaulting Tel Afar. There was a report by one of the PMU group though that said 5,000 more Iraqis joined the units recently, bringing the total of anti-IS forces to 40,000.

    The International Task Force posted this yesterday, which I found a little interesting:
    Last edited by MillerEP; 10-31-2016 at 08:43 AM.

  • #234
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    There was an interesting twitter post, linked from liveuamap, from someone affiliated with the Syrian army that the SAA would support the Kurdish SDF's attack on Al Bab (currently held by ISIS) in Syria.

    Since Turkish backed rebels are also trying to take Al Bab and are bombing SDF positions, this would put Turkey and Syrian forces in direct military conflict. It would appear then that a Syrian, Russian and Kurdish coalition is forming against ISIS and other rebel groups.

    If true, it also implies that the Kurds and Assad are working toward some kind of agreement.

  • #235
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    Some current highlights:

    There has finally been some word from the Western front, They're still slowly trying to assault Tel Afar and have cleared a few villages towards the approach which you can see here:

    The big marker is the city of Tel Afar.

    The East is still battling it out in the outskirts of Mosul in the Karamah district reportedly close to taking the local TV station building located there, while also announcing they captured the village of Gogjali after some fierce fighting there and the village of Bazwaya.

    In the north they are bombing the $#@! out of Bashika, before moving in fully, they still have it surrounded.

    Some key arrests made recently were the Japanese journalist Kosuke Tsuneoka, who was arrested by the Kurds with suspected links to ISIS and the Iraqi PMU detained ISIS Sharia Judge Ali Abdullah Mohamed Kamel, "Abu Khattab" in Al'immam Hamzatan village during their Tal Afar Ops.

  • #236
    What does this Japanese guy have to do with anything? That's kind of a weird twist.

  • #237
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    Quote Originally Posted by MillerEP View Post
    Recap from this weekend:

    North - Peshmerga cleared six villages, to include the village of Talkayf.

    East - ISOF has breached the outskirts of Mosul in the Karma area, making them only 800-900 meters from the city center. Iraq's 9th division have gone into Hay Saddam and Hay Karkoukli, right outside the city of Mosul. Additionally over the weekend, they cleard the village of Bazwaia

    South - The fighting is a little stronger here, while the PMU have captured the following cities so far (as of the 29th):


    West - Not much has come out of the West recently, but they joined the fray this weekend by assaulting Tel Afar. There was a report by one of the PMU group though that said 5,000 more Iraqis joined the units recently, bringing the total of anti-IS forces to 40,000.

    The International Task Force posted this yesterday, which I found a little interesting:
    so, its all quiet on the western front?

  • #238
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    Isis has withdrawn from the Al Karamah neighborhood in Mosul, so the Iraqis are in control there including a TV station. It is east of the city center. They have also entered the Judaydat al-Mufti neighborhood to the south of that. They are getting more refugees now.

    Other units on other roads are still working their way toward Mosul. The Shia militias in the west still appear to be making good progress but the news is sporadic. There was a report that they intend to continue on into Syria after clearing Tal Afar.

    Turkey is still making lots of noise threatening to enter Iraq to go after PKK units near Sinjar. Erdogan appears set on having an all out war with the Kurds in Turkey, Syria and Iraq.

  • #239
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nivek View Post
    so, its all quiet on the western front?
    Far from it. They're trying to take back Tel Afar. Tel Afar was home to the Turkomen minority groups, which is why Turkey was making noise about it last week. Back when I was in Iraq my first time, the US Army was doing some big operations there, trying to clear it before the first elections. It was overrun by Sunni extremists, and one of the only real hotspots in the North at the time. So basically not much has changed, other than the PMU groups moving in are predominately Iranian backed Shia'a militiamen now.

  • #240
    Quote Originally Posted by RayDog View Post
    There was an interesting twitter post, linked from liveuamap, from someone affiliated with the Syrian army that the SAA would support the Kurdish SDF's attack on Al Bab (currently held by ISIS) in Syria.

    Since Turkish backed rebels are also trying to take Al Bab and are bombing SDF positions, this would put Turkey and Syrian forces in direct military conflict. It would appear then that a Syrian, Russian and Kurdish coalition is forming against ISIS and other rebel groups.

    If true, it also implies that the Kurds and Assad are working toward some kind of agreement.
    Por favor 'splain Lucille. Both Turkey AND Kurds are attacking the same people, but will attack each other? WTF?? Too many moving parts for my brain to follow.

  • #241
    Quote Originally Posted by El Diablo View Post
    Por favor 'splain Lucille. Both Turkey AND Kurds are attacking the same people, but will attack each other? WTF?? Too many moving parts for my brain to follow.
    The enemy of my enemy is my friend.

    Don't forget that the Turks were standing by ready for ISIS to destroy the Kurds at Kobane. They wouldn't let us airdrop supplies via Incirlik. Until we leaned on them and they did. What I hear the Turks saying is "Don't get to uppity, Mr. Kurd."

  • #242
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    Quote Originally Posted by El Diablo View Post
    Por favor 'splain Lucille. Both Turkey AND Kurds are attacking the same people, but will attack each other? WTF?? Too many moving parts for my brain to follow.
    Maybe this infographic will help. Essentially there are 3 types of Kurds, Iraqi Kurds who everyone is allies with, and 2 types of Syrian Kurds. 1 type is the PKK (listed in the graphic as Turkish Kurds), which is a communist/socialist leaning group of Kurds, these are the groups on the terrorist watchlist of most countires to include the US and Turkey, and the second group is the YPG, which are considered more democratic (they're actually democratic socialists), like their Iraqi counterparts, who the US is more or less allied with because they fight alongside the SDF we support, but Turkey is still hostile towards. Turkey is still hostile to the YPG because to them they don't see the distinction between their political movements like the US does, to them ANY attempt of a unified Kurdistan south of their borders is a threat, so to them the YPG is just an extension of the PKK since it's all part of a greater movement to form an autonomous Kurdish state like Iraq has.
    Last edited by MillerEP; 11-01-2016 at 12:47 PM.

  • #243
    Any thoughts on why they're coming at Tal Afar from the SE? Think the buildup, discussion of a lunge from the NW was a feint? Or some political bargain?

    Seems the Iraqi's have covered a lot of ground in the last few days. Makes for a big flank to protect.

  • #244
    Quote Originally Posted by MillerEP View Post
    Maybe this infographic will help. Essentially there are 3 types of Kurds, Iraqi Kurds who everyone is allies with, and 2 types of Syrian Kurds. 1 type is the PKK (listed in the graphic as Turkish Kurds), which is a communist/socialist leaning group of Kurds, these are the groups on the terrorist watchlist of most countires to include the US and Turkey, and the second group is the YPG, which are considered more democratic (they're actually democratic socialists), like their Iraqi counterparts, who the US is more or less allied with because they fight alongside the SDF we support, but Turkey is still hostile towards. Turkey is still hostile to the YPG because to them they don't see the distinction between their political movements like the US does, to them ANY attempt of a unified Kurdistan south of their borders is a threat, so to them the YPG is just an extension of the PKK since it's all part of a greater movement to form an autonomous Kurdish state like Iraq has.
    Thanks man, good infographic. You got one for the Syrians? That's a mess too that I can't follow.

  • #245
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    Quote Originally Posted by WhatTheBuck View Post
    Israel is a bad example because her very existence on what they see as Arab land is a massive source of volatility in the region.
    More for another thread, but Israel is also a bad example, since they aren't nearly as massive of a source of volatility in the region as the Sunni/Shiite split.

    Iran and Iraq both lost well over 100,000 soldiers in their little 7-year spat in the 1980s, and that doesn't even count civilian casualties. I think they lost around 250,000 soldiers between them.

    More military personnel were killed in the Iran-Iraq war on both sides, than all of the wars Israel was involved in over the past 70 years (Israel lost 12,000 soldiers since the 1940s, her enemies lost a lot more, but not nearly as many as Iran-Iraq in the 1980s).

    tldr: Body counts in the various Middle Eastern conflicts/wars say Sunnis and Shiites hate each other more than they hate the Jews.

    And the Sunni/Shiite stuff is playing out on a much larger stage here in 2016, from Iraq and Syria, all the way to Yemen.

  • #246
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    Today Syrian Kurdistan (Rajova) announced that they are forming their own federal army. I assume it will be more like the Iraqi Kurdistan Peshmarga. Perhaps like the Peshmarga Turkey will be more willing to work with them, but I am not holding my breath.

    I have started following Kurdistan24 in English for regional war news with a Kurdish perspective.
    https://twitter.com/K24English

  • #247
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chad $#@! View Post
    Any thoughts on why they're coming at Tal Afar from the SE? Think the buildup, discussion of a lunge from the NW was a feint? Or some political bargain?

    Seems the Iraqi's have covered a lot of ground in the last few days. Makes for a big flank to protect.
    I don't think there are many Peshmarga to the north of Tal Afar. There is a smaller contingent protecting Sinjar with a lot of Yazidis. Once the Peshmarga have better control of the areas they have agreed to hold around Mosul, they could possibly reposition some forces toward Tal Afar. In the past they have not gone into Tal Afar because it is predominantly Sunni Arab and they do not consider it to be Kurdish territory and they do not want to offend the locals.

    There are some PKK affiliated forces nearby Tal Afar, but they have been asked to stand down as their participation could lead to an assault by Turkey.

    At least that is the way I am reading the situation. I am not nearly the expert that MillerEP is.

  • #248
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    I also wanted to add perhaps the most disgusting thing I have read, is that of the 500 ISIS "soldiers" that have been killed by the Peshmarga the past two weeks 300 have been children. In the picture that was posted with the story some of them looked to be between 8 and 10 years old. So that is who the brave ISIS leadership is using to protect them.

  • #249
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    Quote Originally Posted by El Diablo View Post
    Thanks man, good infographic. You got one for the Syrians? That's a mess too that I can't follow.
    I haven't really been focusing on Syria just yet, although I have been keeping an eye on some of the stuff coming out. Once Mosul is completed, I thought about making a larger thread on the battle against ISIS in general, but I'm not sure yet. There have been a lot of talk recently of the militias continuing the momentum after Mosul into going into Syria, and last week Turkey's defense minister was saying the coalition might be ready to start pushing towards Raqqa soon, which is the "ISIS capital". Depending on how Mosul works out, I expect the Iraqi military to turn around and start clearing the remainder of the Al Anbar province of ISIS, which should be much easier than Mosul since most the villages in that region are spread a little further out and they're generally all butted up against the Euphrates. I'm more interested in this bit than Syria, since that is where I was.

    Quote Originally Posted by Chad $#@! View Post
    Any thoughts on why they're coming at Tal Afar from the SE? Think the buildup, discussion of a lunge from the NW was a feint? Or some political bargain?

    Seems the Iraqi's have covered a lot of ground in the last few days. Makes for a big flank to protect.
    Raydog's correct, but the maps look more deceptive than it actually is. The force IS pushing in from the Northwest, moving Westward, not just from the South, upwards. Thier plan is to attack Tal Afar on three axis. Last reports of forces from the forces pushing in from the northwest were around 3 days ago though, and they were just reports of skirmishes. So they're there, we just aren't hearing much out of them because they either don't have reporters with them, and/or they're just not posting to social media like the others.

  • #250
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    Some more highlights from today. Raydog already hit on a couple, so here are some others:
    ISIS is hitting back around Gogjali (claiming they repelled the Iraqis and took it back) and Bashiqa. There is a sandstorm, wind, and rain bogging down the Peshmerga there at Bashiqa, which presumably is giving ISIS the cover:


    The Iraqi army captured the village of Shahrazad, which is akin to a suburb of SE Mosul, and supposedly breached the Judaydat al-Mufti neighbourhood of SE Mosul, where they claim "ISIS is throwing everything at them."

    Also some potentially good news, according to Iraqi media, the Iraqi Air Force are claiming that they killed an ISIS leader, known as Abu Tariq al-Hayali, in an airstrike on their headquarters in Mosul, and refugees from Mosul are finally starting to get out safely:
    Last edited by MillerEP; 11-01-2016 at 04:11 PM.

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