I'm doing the best I can to follow the developing story in Falluja, but it's hard to get solid details on what exactly is going on. I think I have a pretty good idea what they're doing (having been involved in things like this once upon a time myself), but specifics are scarce. This post will simply be news articles and opinions as I find them.
has a brief bit about urban warfare. Military Operations in Urban Terrain (MOUT) is one of the dangerous fields for an army on the offensive. It's something we're good at, however, and something that we have been focusing on since WWII, and really improved on in the past few years since Somalia. The Bloomberg article linked above has the most complete analysis I've seen so far, and points out that a few years ago the anticipated casualty rate for this type of assault was 30%. It is now down to 2%.
That's all so far, but there's sure to be more coming up. Everything below this is seperate updates, i'm just too lazy to timestamp all of them.
The Belmont Club
has some thoughts and articles up, and is doing a much better job of this than I (of course). Jeff also has his take on things: think Old Spice and cowboy boots
is also keeping up with the attack. He also points me to this map
A larger sat-photo map with key is here
. The hospital that was captured earlier is apparently somewhere on the west end of town.
Somehow, I forgot to mention the Command Post's Iraq page
. As usual, CP is on top of it.
A bit of 8th hand news: A friend told me he saw on the tee vee that the strategy so far has been, after the city was sealed, to simply fly predators around the city, and call artillery on any building showing gunfire. Sounds good to me. They also have the anti-mine bulldozer and those crazy ied-whipchain machines the engineers use running around. My guess is that the next step will be sectioning off the city and going door-to-door, or at least block-to-block, kicking in doors and dragging out anybody who dosen't look like they belong there.
CENTCOM's Operations Update
has been released, via CP
FALLUJAH, Iraq - Iraqi Security Forces and the I Marine Expeditionary Force continue to degrade and disrupt anti-Iraqi forces in the Fallujah-Ramadi area. I Marine Expeditionary Force employed U.S. Marine Corps aviation assets to deliver precision munitions to destroy preplanned targets in Fallujah.
In the last 24 hours, I Marine Expeditionary Force conducted coordinated offensive operations in and around the Fallujah-Ramadi area. I MEF destroyed several weapons caches.