DEBKAfile Exclusive Report June 11, 2014
Under its commander, Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi, Al Qaeda’s Islamic State in Iraq and Levant – ISIS - formed up Wednesday night, June 11, to march on Baghdad in two columns from Tikrit and Tuz Khormato, south of Kirkuk. Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki ordered the last two divisions and six mechanized brigades still operational with 50,000 men, out of his million-strong army, to build a defensive line to save Baghdad. Disaffected Iraqi Sunnis are joining al Qaeda’s march in revolt against the Shiite-led government. Maliki accuses them of treason.
DEBKAfile Special Report June 11, 2014
After occupying the northern Iraqi oil town of Mosul, Al Qaeda’s ISIS (Islamist State of Iraq and the Levant) went on to seize more slices of Nineveh province. By Wednesday, June 11, they were in control of around 38,000 sq. km. or one-tenth of Iraqi territory and 3.5 million inhabitants. They also took over the main Iraq-Syrian crossing at Yaaroubiyeh. The Islamists rode out of Mosul Tuesday with 260 new armored vehicles of various types – enough to arm a full division – and put half a million refugees to flight.
DEBKAfile Special Report June 9, 2014
IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz’s cryptic remark Monday, June 6 that “The Israeli Air Force will next month dramatically change its mode of operation,” meant that a decision has been taken to start directing the IAF’s fire power against 50,000 al Qaeda fighters, whom he calculates are forgathering in the Syrian and Iraqi arenas north of Israel. Gen. Gantz was referring not just to warplanes, but also Israel’s long-range unmanned aerial vehicles and helicopters. For this kind of warfare, he said, the air force requires a different kind of intelligence support.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report April 17, 2014
The Jordanian air strike Wednesday April 16 against an armored vehicle convoy from Syria destroyed an Al Qaeda raider force on its way to attack a US military target, debkafile reveals. Jordan’s first assault on a target outside the country took place on the Syrian side of the border opposite the eastern Jordanian town of Ruwaished. At a secret base nearby, Iraqi troops are being instructed by US and Jordanian instructors in counter-terror combat tactics. This episode dramatizes the escalating Al Qaeda-Iraq threat to Jordan, US forces based there and Israel.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report April 15, 2014
The Iraqi army began buttressing its defense lines on April 12 to save parts of the capital city of Baghdad from falling to al Qaeda’s Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS). Terrorist forces have broken through into the city’s western outskirts and are preparing to head out to other parts of the city of more than seven million and Iraqi government headquarters. The jihadis are engaged in cutting off the Iraqi capital’s sources of fresh water and blowing up its main bridges to the rest of the country in order to disrupt Iraqi army movements.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report February 20, 2014
Iraqi al Qaeda has arrived in Sinai to upgrade the performance of local jihadis. Terrorist strength has jumped close to the numbers of Egyptian troops in counter-terror operations in the peninsula.
DEBKAfile Special Report January 13, 2014
The US and Iran agree to treat Tehran’s regional policies as separate from nuclear diplomacy to forestall obstacles which such opponents as Saudi Arabia and Israel may raise. Monday, Jan. 14, senior US sources admitted: “The US and Iran have sought to insulate the nuclear negotiations from the tensions over Iran’s regional policies.” On the Syrian issue, governments near and far will attend Geneva 2, but Israel is not invited, although events in next-door Syria and Lebanon directly impinge on its security. Sharon would not have taken this snub lying down.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report January 3, 2014
Al Qaeda fighters marched into the key Iraqi towns of Falluja and Ramadi Friday, Jan. 3, after resoundingly defeating a major Iraqi army offensive. This victory was aided by the Sunni tribes of western Iraq. The Iraqi-Syrian branch of al Qaeda (ISIS) has now gained a territorial chain of control stretching from Ramadi, 100 km west of Baghdad, to Al-Raqqah in northern Syria, 160 km from Aleppo. Its commander Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi vows to establish an Islamist caliphate, which would present a direct menace to Israel, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and Lebanon.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report April 12, 2013
Jabhat al-Nusra operated in Syria for years as a clandestine movement, the brainchild of the notorious Jordanian master terrorist Musab Abu-Zarqawi of Iraq who used Syria as his logistical hub. Al-Nusra is now revealed It now emerges as a part of al Qaeda of Iraq - The Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant.
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