Bill Roggio on Threats Watch:
The ‘maintenance’ phase of the Anbar Campaign proceeds as Iraqi Army units continue to take greater responsibility for security operations in Anbar province. Iraqi units are increasingly conducting independent operations in the region after joint Coalition and Iraqi operations over the fall placed a permanent presence in the towns and cities along the Western Euphrates River Valley. Operation Moonlight on the Syrian border was one such example. Operation Final Strike is the latest.
As the Iraqi Army assumes a greater role in security responsibilities, the Coalition has opened up talks with various insurgent groups in an attempt to co-opt them into the political process. Newsweek reports “The groups include Baathist cells and religious Islamic factions, as well as former Special Republican Guards and intelligence agents,” and “Iraq’s insurgent groups are reaching back.”
If we’ve done our homework and are offering a way out of this mess with honor to some insurgent groups, it could go quite far.