Siege of Mosul. Dabiq Falls. Taliban Rising. @BillRoggio. @ThomasJoscelyn. @FollowFDD.

Oct 18, 2016, 02:46 AM

10-17-2016 (Photo: The video highlights the precarious situation in Lashkar Gah, which has been under Taliban threat for well over year. In Oct. 2015, The Taliban advanced to within miles of Lashkar Gah, which has been besieged ever since. US advisers have been deployed to Lashkar Gah and other districts in Helmand to help Afghan forces battle the Taliban, but have struggled to contain the threat. Of Helmand’s 14 districts, six are known to be controlled by the Taliban and another seven, including the provincial capital, are heavily contested. The Taliban are threatening four other provincial capitals. Images from the Taliban video of the Basharan ambush: http://www.longwarjournal.org/archives/2016/10/taliban-details-deadly-ambush-of-afghan-military-convoy.php) http://JohnBatchelorShow.com/contact http://JohnBatchelorShow.com/schedules http://johnbatchelorshow.com/blog Twitter: @BatchelorShow

Siege of Mosul. Dabiq Falls. Taliban Rising. @BillRoggio. @ThomasJoscelyn. @FollowFDD.

If the Islamic State digs in and defends Mosul, the fight is expected to be bloody. More than 6,000 Islamic State fighters are thought to be in the city. It has deployed thousands of mines and has dug an elaborate network of tunnels and trenches across Mosul in preparation for a protracted urban fight. Additionally, hundreds of thousands of civilians are trapped in the city as the Islamic State has prevented them from leaving. However, during recent battles in major Iraqi cities such as Ramadi and Fallujah, the Islamic State withdrew the bulk of its troops and left a smaller rearguard force to bleed the Iraqi military and militias. The forces in the fragmented anti-Islamic State alliance, a mix of Iraqi special forces and regular troops, the Kurdish Peshmerga, and Sunni and Shiite militias who number a total of 60,000, are each positioning themselves to reap the benefits of a post-Islamic State Mosul. The most dangerous element among these forces is the network backed by Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guard Corps (IRGC). The Iraqi Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF), an umbrella organization of Shiite, Sunnis, Christian, and Yazidi militias formed following the fatwa of Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani in 2014 to drive the Islamic State from Iraq, is controlled and dominated by IRGC-backed proxies. In an effort to rein in these militias, Prime Minister Abadi has created a parallel military organization for the PMF in the security apparatus outside of the command structure. However, the PMF remains riddled with Iranian-supported militias, and its key leaders are beholden to IRGC-Qods Force’s commander, Qassem Soleimani. These forces and their Iranian advisers will participate in the operation for Mosul, as affirmed by Harakat al Nujaba head Akram al Kabi. Soleimani is expected to play “a major role” in the operation for Mosul, a PMF spokesman said two months ago, though this has not been confirmed yet.

http://www.longwarjournal.org/archives/2016/10/the-siege-of-mosul-draws-close.php


http://www.longwarjournal.org/archives/2016/10/town-of-dabiq-falls-to-turkish-backed-forces.php

http://www.longwarjournal.org/archives/2016/10/taliban-details-deadly-ambush-of-afghan-military-convoy.php