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Iraqi Resistance Three-Hour Battle

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    Three-Hour Battle Between US Forces and Iraqi Resistance in Tal Afar, 13 Killed Mostly Policemen Aljazeerah.info www.uruknet.info?p=13036 US military sources
    Message 1 of 1 , Jul 1, 2005
      Three-Hour Battle Between US Forces and Iraqi Resistance in Tal Afar,
      13 Killed Mostly Policemen

      US military sources say 60-70 Iraqi resistance attacks are conducted
      everyday. The following is a Reuters news report about few of them.

      Sat Jun 25, 2005 12:33 PM ET

      By Alastair Macdonald BAGHDAD (Reuters) -

      Iraqi resistance fighters stormed a police station in western Iraq on
      Saturday and fought a three-hour battle with U.S. and Iraqi forces in
      the north, challenging assertions from Washington that the resistance
      is being crushed.

      A day after news of a bomb attack that killed six Americans intruded
      on talks between President Bush and Iraqi Prime Minister Ibrahim
      Ja'afari, the killing of eight policemen at Ramadi and combat at Tal
      Afar provided further evidence that Iraqi and foreign fighters remain
      a force.

      Bush used a weekly radio address to reject criticism from opposition
      Democrats that he had embroiled U.S. forces in a "quagmire" like that
      of Vietnam 30 years ago and insisted his two-pronged military and
      diplomatic strategy would work.

      Police said about 20 gunmen stormed the station at Ramadi, capital of
      Al-Anbar province, the second such raid in a week. Residents and
      officials at Tal Afar, near Mosul, where U.S. troops have cracked down
      this month, said three bomb attacks were followed by a battle
      involving U.S. tanks and helicopters that lasted about three hours.

      In Samarra, north of Baghdad, police said at least five people were
      killed and 10 wounded by a car bomb that went off near the home of a
      senior police officer.

      "Our military strategy is clear: We will train Iraqi security forces
      so they can defend their freedom and protect their people and then our
      troops will return home with the honor they have earned," Bush said in
      his radio address.

      "The political track of our strategy is to continue helping Iraqis
      build the institutions of a stable democracy."

      On Friday, Bush and Ja'afari both dismissed calls for a timetable to
      be set for pulling out the 140,000 or so U.S. troops in Iraq. Bush
      said they would complete their mission.


      U.S. commanders in Iraq stress that Iraqi forces, disbanded on U.S.
      orders after the US 2003 invasion, are still in the early stages of
      renewal and will continue to depend on U.S. firepower for some
      considerable time to come -- quite how long, they say, it is too early
      to even estimate.

      General John Abizaid, commander for the Middle East, acknowledged this
      week that the resistance had not weakened and that more foreigners
      were coming to join the fight.

      Towns like Ramadi and Tal Afar, on routes into Iraq from Syria, have
      been important objectives for U.S. and Iraqi forces trying to stem the
      flow of Arab fighters coming to help fellow Sunni Arabs fight the
      Americans and their allies in Iraq.

      Foreigners remain a small part of the resistance, U.S. commanders say,
      but form a spearhead for the kind of suicide bomb attack that
      inflicted Thursday's casualties in Falluja.

      Of six killed when the attacker drove into a Marine truck loaded with
      troops, four were women, military officials said, as were 11 of the 13
      wounded. Their duties were to search women passing through checkpoints
      that U.S. forces have used to try to control the town, between Baghdad
      and Ramadi, since Marines stormed in and captured the rebel stronghold
      in November.

      Such was the damage caused by the blast that it took a day for the
      military to confirm the full death toll.

      The willingness of hundreds of people to kill themselves in such
      attacks, and the fact there seems little let up, is a source of
      concern to troops who find them hard to counter.

      While buried roadside bombs were the biggest killer of U.S. troops --
      more than 1,730 have died in Iraq already -- the suicide car attack
      could be harder to prevent: "This is basically their best guided
      weapons system," said Lieutenant Colonel Steven Boylan, a military
      spokesman in Baghdad.


      The Falluja attack was one of the bloodiest of the war on U.S. ground
      forces and the third this month in which five or more occupants of a
      military vehicle have been killed.

      U.S. commanders describe an arms race against evolving resistance
      tactics and are concerned at recent successes resistance fighters have
      had with more powerful charges. The country is awash with heavy
      munitions left over from Saddam's arsenal.

      The attack on the Ramadi police station had elements of previous such
      raids that have become more frequent in the past six to eight months,
      in which U.S. officials describe resistance fighters, some of whom may
      be led by former officers in the Iraqi army, employing infantry
      tactics similar to those of regular troops.

      This week, more than 100 resistance fighters were estimated to have
      taken part in raid on a Baghdad police station and were only driven
      off by the arrival of U.S. helicopters and troops.

      Such raids have little chance of success against U.S. technology. But
      the use of such tactics raises a possibility they might be used to
      take and hold territory against the Shi'i-Kurdish government forces in
      a civil war of the kind some fear could follow a U.S. withdrawal.

      (Additional reporting by Majid Hamed in Ramadi and Maher al-Thanoon in



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