Friday, October 3, 2014

Iraq / Syria Updates ( October 3 , 2014 ) -- Today's news and views , info from the battlefield in Syria and Iraq ....

Anti War.....

ISIS Has Seized Over 350 Villages in Northern Syria in 16 Days

Militants 'a Few Hundred Yards' From Ayn al-Arab

by Jason Ditz, October 02, 2014
ISIS is continuing to push its offensive against the Kurdish border town of Ayn al-Arab, and reports on the ground say they’ve been more successful than previously suggested.
According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, ISIS as seized more than 350 villages in the area in the last 16 days, and displaced at least 300,000 people from Ayn al-Arab and the surrounding area.
They continue to get closer to the town, too, despite large numbers of Kurdish militia fighters opposing them. On Monday, they were reportedly 5 km from town. On Tuesday they were 3 km away. This morning, they are said to be only “a few hundred yards” away.
Ayn al-Arab would give ISIS a long, contiguous border with Turkey. The bigger deal would be the psychological impact on the Syrian Kurds, however, who had been successful in defending the town in the past, but seem to be losing ground now in the wake of ISIS offensives.

Iraq Denies Reports ISIS Seized Another Key Anbar Town

Fighting Is Ongoing, Militia Says

by Jason Ditz, October 02, 2014
ISIS is advancing against the strategically important town of Hit, in Anbar Province, but local tribal militias aligned with the government denied reports from ISIS that the town has been overrun completely.
Iraqi state media reported ISIS has seized the town’s police station as well as the mayor’s office, but the tribal fighters say that the battle is ongoing, and that ISIS can’t move freely inside the town.
Just northwest of Ramadi, Hit is along the main highway leading to Haditha, and Haditha Dam has been an important target for ISIS in recent months. The loss of the town would give them another route through which to target the dam.
Though ISIS controls the majority of the Anbar Province, several individual towns have remained independent. If they stay that way, ISIS may find the Iraqi military trying to use them as staging grounds in the fight to retake the area.

UN Releases Iraq Report As 291 Are Killed
by , October 02, 2014
At least 291 people were killed today and 49 more were wounded. Heavy fighting took place during a failed attempt by ISIS/DAASH to take over Hit, in Anbar province. Meanwhile, the United Nations released a gruesome report on the violence and abuses occurring across Iraq.
The United Nations released a report describing the "staggering array" of human rights abuses in Iraq. They warn that there are reports of other "terrifying" allegations that were left out because they had not been confirmed, yet. Many violations were perpetrated by the Islamic State militants, but they also reported ones conducted by Iraq’s own security forces. They have tallied the deaths of at least 9,347 civilians in these multiple conflicts.
Imprisoned Kurdistan Workers’ Party head Abdullah Ocalan warned Turkeythat allowing Islamic State militants to take over they Syrian city of Kobanê and massacre Kurds there would seriously damage ongoing peace talks. A decades-long guerilla war tapered between the two off last year, and a permanent truce was looking likely earlier this year. The P.K.K. had staged many of their attacks against Turkey from bases hidden in northern Iraq. Likewise, Turkey would bomb suspected sites without permission from Baghdad. Should the truce completely end, it can only add another confusing layer to regional issues, such as the expansion of the Kurdish state.
In Hit, militants bombed the police headquarters and several checkpoints. A witnesssaid that militants had raised their flag at the mayor’s office and battles were occurring within the city itself. Coalition airstrikes forced the militants to retreat, but clashes continued outside the city. A Sahwa leader later said the fighting was over, and with the help of the Albu Nimr tribe dozens of militants were killed. At least 20 militants have been counted as killed. At least 42 security members were killed and 32 were woundedMore are missing.
Ramadi suffered from car bomb and mortar attacks. Six security personnel were killed in an attack on a base. At least 13 militants were killed in and around the city.
In Mosul, a deputy attorney general was executed a day after her "arrest" by militants.
A roadside bomb killed two Peshmerga and wounded three more in al-Aosaj.
Two soldiers were wounded in Safra, during a battle that also left two militants dead.
A roadside bomb near the Hamrin Dam killed a police officer and wounded four more.
In Diyala province, volunteer fighters and air forces killed 50 militants while liberating 30 villages.
Six militants were killed near the Adhaim Dam.
Security forces killed six militants in Warrar Camp.
Dozens of militants were killed in YathribDuluiya, and Ahbab.
Airstrikes and clashes took place in Yathrib.
Duluiya also saw airstrikes.
Clashes occurred in Haditha.


Vows to Defend as Militants Close in on the City

PM rejects ground forces, calls on anti-ISIS coalition to respect Iraq's sovereignty & says Iraqi army & volunteers capable of fighting ISIS

New on MoA: Israel Lobby Supports Jabhat Al-Nusra, Insurgents In Aleppo Surrounded -

As CNN said ISIS have entered , the hell of urban warfare looks like it has started

Huge explosion at entrance of


In a statement, Iraq vice president Nuri demands parliament to cancel its decision to authorize...

May Resort to Chemical Attacks, Expert Warns

Islamic State "entering and hiding in residential areas" to escape coalition bombings in - border town.

"Throughout the airstrikes the Islamic State didn't retreat, but withdrew its forces from some exposed locations," -activist in Al-Bokamel.

Turkey has hard choices. If Kobane falls the PKK will likely retaliate. If they intervene , with large presence in country, may do so.

Reports this morning that govt forces have captured Handarat, . If so, opposition forces in city will be totally besieged

PT: While still unclear, shifted dynamics post-coalition airstrikes (i.e Nusra going underground & defections to ISIS) appear main catalyst.

PTs: Worth waiting for official confirmation, but it seems at least the Handarat road has been cut off. Regime offensive continuing.

Yes, just voted to allow army operations in , but that's NOT new. It's a pre-scheduled renewal of a 1-year authorization [1/2]

>first given in Oct 2012 & renewed Oct 2013. What's new this time around is the gov. can now let foreign troops use Turkish territory. [2/2]