Thursday, October 2, 2014

ISIS Within 1 Mile of Baghdad, Escape Routes Closed!

"They said it could never happen and now it almost has." said a spokesman for a Baghdad aid group, who says the Iraqi army is unprepared to battle ISIS. 

Islamic State (ISIS) fighters are only one mile away from Baghdad, Iraq's capital, according a spokesman for the Foundation for Relief and Reconciliation in the Middle East, a Christian aid group.
"They said it could never happen and now it almost has. Obama says he overestimated what the Iraqi Army could do. Well, you only need to be here a very short while to know they can do very, very little," said the spokesman.

 In an interview (see video below), Canon Andrew White, a veteran of Baghdad and leader of the foundation, said that the U.S. airstrikes had proven to be ineffective against the Islamic State and that, unfortunately, they had merely killed civilians. Ground troops are needed, he said to defeat the Islamic State.
Canon himself has been provided with over 30 security guards –some of them soldiers from the Iraqi Army -- due to the danger that he faces.  When asked if he had faith in the Iraqi army, Canon laughed.
He explained, “I’m laughing because I said to one of my soldier guards today, ‘If ISIS were coming towards you, what would you do?’ He said, ‘I would take off my uniform.’ [I asked,] ‘Why are you in the army then? Why are you a soldier? What are you doing? Aren’t you protecting us?’ He said, ‘No, I’m in it because I need the money.’”
When asked if people are planning to flee the city, Canon said, “The problem is there isn’t much opportunity. If you go by car, you go by the central part of the [country], which is now under ISIS control. If you try to fly out, that isn’t easy because, for example, the first flight that I can get is on Monday.”
Meanwhile, 50 miles northwest of the capital, Islamic State militants besieged an Iraqi army base, trapping between 240 and 600 army personnel inside. A number of soldiers from the Albu Aytha base escaped before the militants arrived.
Fifty miles due north of Baghdad, an Iraqi tribe in the Jubar neighborhood of the Sunni Arab town of Dhuluiyah has held out under a two-week attack by Islamic State fighters. Jubar was highly involved fighting the precursor to the Islamic State in 2005-07 (when the Islamic State was affiliated with Al Qaeda). Those Sunni tribal forces were backed the U.S.
Tribal leaders have asked for more help from the U.S.-led coalition, specifically airstrikes, which they say will help disperse the jihadists.

Earlier this week in Mosul, an Islamic State stronghold Samira Salih al-NuaimiSamira Salih al-Nuaimiin Iraq, the jihadi group tortured and executed a prominent human rights activist and lawyer for critical remarks she made against the group on Facebook. Samira Salih al-Nuaimi took issue with the group for destroying monotheistic religious sites, including mosques and the tombs of Daniel and Jonah.
Islamic State militants abducted al-Nuaimi from her house and tortured her for five days before having a firing squad execute her in the middle of the city.
“By torturing and executing a female human rights lawyer and activist, defending in particular the civil and human rights of her fellow citizens in Mosul, ISIS continues to attest to its infamous nature, combining hatred, nihilism and savagery, as well as its total disregard of human decency,” said Nickolay Mladenov, the UN envoy to Iraq, in a statement.
In what is thought to be a targeted campaign against female activists, two more women lawyers in the Mosul area are also feared to have been abducted by the Islamic State, as they have been reported missing for over a week.
In Syria, Islamic State fighters beheaded seven men and three women in the northern Kurdish area of Ayn Arab, a town close to the border with Turkey. Five of those beheaded were reported to be Kurdish Peshmerga fighters, including three women. Pictures on social media showed the women’s heads on display in the Islamic State stronghold city Jarablous in northern Syria.
Kurdish fighters have been battling the Islamic State in the area of Kobani for the last two weeks. High casualties have been reported in that battle.
Also in Syria, the Al Qaeda-affiliated jihadi group, Jabhat al-Nusra, is reportedly entering into an alliance with the Islamic State. Despite previous fighting between the two groups, they may be joining forces to combat the American-led coalition.
Threatening retaliatory action against the U.S. and it allies, Al-Nusra’s spokesman, Abu Firas al-Suri, said, “These states have committed a horrible act that is going to put them on the list of jihadist targets throughout the world.”