|News and opinions on situation in Iraq|
|13/11/04||US Forces Have NOT Taken Fallujah by Omar Al-Faris, JUS and Muhammad Abu Nasr, Free Arab Voice|
While JUS normally publishes articles and editorial comments on the weekend, the decisive battle that is raging in Fallujah can’t be ignored. Consequently we are filing this special bulletin and will keep you updated as news comes in from the city over the weekend.
US forces that remain inside Fallujah are now surrounded. The American were forced to move troops out of the city as the conflict widened and is now raging throughout the Sunni triangle and in the capital city.
In a bait and switch maneuver, Mujahideen in the city Friday allowed US aggressor troops into several areas of the city and then encircled them. This allowed the Mujahideen to wage the battle on their own terms. The US military has been mobbing along the main roads and avoiding the side-streets. The soldiers do not leave their armored vehicles and tanks. If they get fired on, they fire back from their tanks or call in air-strikes. By convincing the Americans that the Mujahideen had left, the fighters were able to attack and fight the US troops in areas where their aircraft and heavy weapons can not help them.
According to plan, US troops proceeded down as-Sirdar Street in the al-Jawlan and ash-Shurtah neighborhoods. They also entered the al-‘Askari neighborhood from the direction of the First and Second ad-Dubbat neighborhoods on the street that runs between the ash-Shurtah neighborhood to the north and the al-‘Askari neighborhood to the south, bringing the US troops to the heart of the main street. There the attacks on the US forces began in earnest.
The Mujahideen mounted several ambushes on the US troops and managed to cut some units off from the others, splitting up the attackers and enabling them to inflict damage on the American forces in men and materiel. The Mujahideen totally purged the industrial zone of American invader troops from the southeast. The an-Nazal and ash-Shuhada’ areas were also cleared of American forces. As of 10 pm local time Friday night, fighting was limited to the edges of those districts. At that time an entire US column was surrounded on al-Hadrah Street which is located between the ash-Shurtah neighborhood and the ad-Dubbat neighborhood.
Mujahideen forces ambushed the Americans in those areas by posting sharpshooters along the path where the US troops were to come, enabling them to shoot down numerous foot soldiers that had been dropped from the air in Festival Square [Sahat al-Ihtifalat]. At the same time the narrow lanes pressed the forces of the two sides close together, preventing the Americans from making use of their airpower. US snipers on rooftops in Al-Jawlan have proven to be useless as the streets are too narrow to allow them to shoot with any kind of accuracy.
At the time of filing, the Mujahideen was in a strong position thanks to its decision to adopt the strategy of street fighting that allowed for attracting the enemy into those streets and then hunting down their advance guards.
The Mafkarat al-Islam’s correspondent in Fallujah also wrote that media reports about a major American breakthrough in Fallujah and that the Americans control 90 percent of the city are false. The US penetration into the city has been the result of Mujahideen efforts to draw the enemy in. The effect has been that heavy losses have been inflicted on the Americans.
As to claims by some Arab media that US forces are now stationed inside the city, the correspondent noted that the only American contingent is located inside the city has been encircled by Mujahideen forces since before yesterday. It is able to remain there without being destroyed by virtue of the covering fire provided by American snipers posted on buildings in the area. The American unit has until the time of writing been unable to extract itself from its besieged position.
US forces are trying to break the encirclement of an American column on al-Hadrah al-Muhammadiyah street in the neighborhoods of ash-Shurtah and ad-Dubbat. But the American column is well encircled on all sides. On Thursday, the Mujahideen encircled and destroyed a whole American column in the al-Jaghifi neighborhood.
Fighting in Fallujah at the time of this filing is going on in two places: al-Hadrah al-Muhammadiyah and the north of the al-Jawlan neighborhood on as-Sirdar Street. Ten US troops were killed at 6pm Friday when Iraqi resistance forces attacked and destroyed two US Humvees in the area between Fallujah and al-‘Amiriyah.
Mujahideen Appoint General Commander Of Operations, Spokesman
The Iraqi Mujahideen forces in Fallujah on Thursday appointed one of their members as General Commander of all resistance formations in the city. There are more than eight Mujahideen organizations operating in the city. The groups has come together and united for the first time since the fall of Baghdad under the leadership of one of their men who has considerable experience in urban warfare.
In addition, an official spokesman has been appointed, making the Mujahideen more organized. This new unity has encouraged the Fallujah Mujahideen to achieve the grand results that they achieved on Thursday. Since the unification, the Mujahideen in the city has made big advances in coordinating their activities and attacks using pre-planned and well-thought out military tactics.
As a result, the US forces are now fighting a war of attrition. For the third straight day American forces have been drawn into the city allowing the Mujahideen to inflict heavy damage on the enemy.
Mujahideen Down Black Hawk
Iraqi Mujahideen forces in Fallujah shot down a US Black Hawk helicopter with a Strela missile on Friday. The helicopter was keeping fighters “busy” to facilitate the escape of several American tanks from a tight spot. But the Mujahideen attacked the helicopter with a Strela rocket, shooting it down and killing the four crewmen aboard – two machine gunners on the sides of the craft and the pilot and co-pilot.
US forces, meanwhile, bombarded the al-‘Amiriyah neighborhood south of Fallujah at about 8pm Friday night, destroying two houses and killing five families and wounding other people inside. Two women and an 11-year-old little girl are among the dead.
Mafkarat Al-Islam’s Correspondent In Fallujah Hit By Enemy Fire
Late word in at presstime is that Mafkarat al-Islam’s correspondent in Fallujah has been hit by enemy fire. He was stuck by four bullets Friday night after the al-‘Isha’ nighttime prayers as he was covering the battle in the al-Jawlan neighborhood. Of the four bullets, three of them penetrating his body. Two struck him in the shoulder and one in the waist. The fourth bullet lodged in his thigh. His condition is serious, but stable.
The correspondent has been unable to find proper medical care due to the shortage of doctors in the city, after US forces attacked all the hospitals there. Mafkarat al-Islam has been covering Fallujah using two correspondents inside the city and one in the area outside.
There were also unconfirmed reports that a correspondent for al-Jazeera satellite TV named Husayn had also been wounded in Fallujah but no details were initially available. (JUS)
UPDATE ON FALLUJAH: Mujahideen Reject Ceasefire, Wipe Out US Column By Omar al-Faris, JUS
In a report in early this morning, Fallujah Mujahideen have rejected the US request for cease fire and have wiped the besieged American column on Al-Hadhrah street. After the American occupation forces made several military attempts to break the siege around their battalion that had been encircled by Mujahideen on Al-Hadhrah street for several days, they were unable to dislodge it. When those military attempts failed, they resorted to peaceful solution by requesting cease fire- using loud speakers to make sure that their plea is heard. Mujahideen subsequently rejected the American request and proceeded to wipe out the entire American column on Hadhrah street. Details of American casualties are currently being evaluated, verified, and will be forth coming;
Americans Loosen Their Grip On Fallujah Perimeters
In an attempt to “show good faith” towards the citizens of Fallujah, the American occupiers have reopened Al-Azraqiah pass to allow families to leave. Many vacating families were seen having with obvious signs of weakness, malnutrition, torn up clothes, injuries and dust from being under rubbles. Children showed unmistakable signs of weakness, lack of food, dehydration, and lack of medical care as a result of cutting off all food and medical supplies to the city by American occupiers. The occupiers were savage towards the citizens of Fallujah during the initial siege to the extent of positioning snipers at the river banks to fire at anyone coming neat the river for a drink.