Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Mosul Campaign Day Twenty-Two, Nov 7, 2016


More news came out on progress made on November 6. The Federal Police freed 7 towns in the southeast including Hamam al-Alil. The army liberated 5 towns in the north and south, and the Golden Division entered one new neighborhood in eastern Mosul.

On November 7, the Peshmerga stormed Bashiqa in the east in the last major operation they will take part in. The town had been surrounded for a week now. Two adjoining villages were also cleared. Reporters from Rudaw saw U.S. forces accompanying the Peshmerga in the area. American Special Forces have been working with the Kurds for quite some time now to call in air strikes and acting as advisers.

In the southeast the Federal Police were clearing the area around Hamam al-Alil. They went through three more towns, but one of them was declared freed two days ago. Agence France Presse reported that life was returning to normal in Hamam al-Alil with people re-opening their shops and trying to go about their business. Outside of the town in the Agriculture College a mass grave was discovered with 100 bodies in it executed by the Islamic State.

The 16th Division went through two towns in the north.

The 9th Division working alongside the Golden Division in the east freed one village, and attacked three other towns and areas of Mosul. One of those had been attacked at the start of the month, but the army had apparently not gained a strong foothold there.

The Golden Division was embroiled in heavy fighting in the east as well. Seven neighborhoods in Mosul were surrounded. Three of those areas however had been called liberated before. In the city there have been many advances and retreats due to Islamic State counterattacks, so more news of areas being cleared multiple times will come out.

There have been several reports on the intensity of the fighting within Mosul. CNN for example had an account of combat in Kirkukli when an army convoy was ambushed with 12 out of 15 Humvees being lost. They called for back up, but it took 8 hours for it to arrive, and the relief column got trapped as well before all the soldiers could be evacuated.

The U.S. has also stepped up its involvement in the operation. American artillery in the south is providing fire support for the advancing Iraqi troops. The Coalition is largely in charge of logistics for the Iraqis. Now there is a story that Apaches have been deployed in small numbers to destroy car bombs.

The International Organization for Migration gave new figures on the number of displaced since the Mosul operation started on October 17. It had 34,038 people registered. Originally on October 19 there were just 1,900 as just a few villages had been entered. As soon as eastern Mosul was penetrated however, the amount of people dramatically increased. Broken down by area there were 29,976 displaced from Mosul, 4,410 from Hamdaniya, 2334 from Tilkaif, and 318 from Makhmour. The number of people who have been displaced is nowhere near the figures that some humanitarian groups warned about before the campaign started, but they will likely continue to climb higher as more parts of Mosul are liberated.

Reported Casualties:

2,089 Killed
1 U.S. Sailor
2 Kurd Counterterrorism Operatives
3 ISF
37 Hashd
69 Peshmerga
94 Soldiers
1,883 Civilians

745 Wounded
69 Hashd
95 Civilians
259 Peshmerga
322 Soldiers

1,799 Executed by Islamic State

SOURCES

Agence France Presse, “Iraq forces retake key town on Mosul southern front,” 11/7/16
- “US using Apache helicopters in the battle for Mosul,” 11/7/16

BBC, "Mosul battle: Iraqi special forces enter city limits," 11/1/16
- "Mosul battle: Kurdish forces push into IS-held Bashiqa," 11/7/16

George, Susannah, “Casualties mount as Iraqis press deeper into IS-held Mosul,” Associated Press, 11/7/16

Georgy, Michael, "Iraq Peshmerga storm Islamic State town as army battles in Mosul," Reuters, 11/7/16

International Organization for Migration, “IOM Iraq Emergency Tracking: Mosul Operations, Data Snapshot: 7 November 2016,” 11/7/16

Iraq Oil Report, "Inside Mosul: Nov. 1, 2016," 11/1/16
- "Inside Mosul: Nov. 5, 2016," 11/5/16
- "Inside Mosul: Nov. 7, 2016," 11/7/16

Lister, Tim and Sanchez, Ray, “Fierce fight on edge of Mosul may be a preview of battle to come,” CNN, 11/6/16

Al Mada, "Federal Police liberate villages north of Hamam al-Alil, 5 km separate them from Mosul city and its airport," 11/7/16

NINA, "Federal Police Kill 2 Suicide Bombers, Arrest 20 Terrorists, Liberate Collage Of Agriculture," 11/5/16

Rojkan, Mira, "Peshmerga Conducting House-to-House Search after Recapturing Bashiq," Bas News, 11/7/16

Rudaw, "LIVE UPDATES: The fight for Mosul day 20," 11/5/16
- “MOSUL OFFENSIVE DAY 22: Peshmerga liberate Bashiqa,” 11/7/16

Xinhua, "Iraqi forces free more districts in eastern Mosul," 11/4/16

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