The U.S.-led coalition’s effort to recapture the Iraqi city of Mosul from the Islamic State militant group (ISIS) has begun, according to the top U.S. envoy in the fight against the extremists.Seems like an odd sort of offensive. How are they going to “squeeze” the Islamic State soldiers in the city without starving the inhabitants? or is this announcement just a political move, designed to reassure some people and threaten others?
“It’s already started,” Brett McGurk said on Wednesday at a speech at the American University of Iraq in the northern Iraqi Kurdish city of Sulaimani. “It’s a slow, steady squeeze.”
The coalition is conducting almost daily air strikes against ISIS personnel and infrastructure in the city. Iraqi forces are stationed just kilometers from the militants’ stronghold and the Kurdish Peshmerga have recaptured territory from the group north of the city.
McGurk’s statement suggests the coalition does not plan to bring about the collapse of ISIS in the city by a rapid and large mobilization of troops. The current plans seem to involve patiently encircling the group and cutting it off from the outside world before a major invasion. “The formula is working,” McGurk said. “It’s slow, but it’s working.”
Colonel Steve Warren, the U.S.-led coalition spokesman, also recently mentioned how the campaign to retake Mosul. “Preparations to take Mosul are happening now,” he tweeted on Tuesday, “including precision air strikes by coalition forces.”
When did the U.S. military start announcing its campaigns over Twitter?
And here's a weird detail:
Those strikes have started targeted ISIS’s financial infrastructure and cash reserves, and U.S. officials estimate they’ve destroyed “millions” of dollars.So we're bombing the mattresses where they hide their cash?