Stryker Soldiers with Company B, 4-9 Infantry Regiment, walk through a village in the outskirts of Baqubah, as the Mobile Gun System Stryker variant pulls security down a road, June 20. Soldiers of 4th Battalion, 9th Infantry Regiment, 4th Stryker Brigade Combat Team are assisting Soldiers of 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team in the clearing of Baqubah, a major operation known as “Arrowhead Ripper,” by isolating Baqubah just outside the city limits, to prevent insurgents from getting in, or out, of the city. Both Stryker brigades are with the 2nd Infantry Division, from Fort Lewis, Wash. Photographer: Sgt. Antonieta Rico, 5th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment, Tikrit
Found at The Tension.
UPDATE: Speaking of Baqubah, check out Michael Yon’s Operation Arrowhead Ripper: Day One
The enemy in Baqubah is as good as any in Iraq, and better than most. That’s saying a lot. But our guys have been systematically trapping them, and have foiled some big traps set for our guys. I don’t want to say much more about that, but our guys are seriously outsmarting them. Big fights are ahead and we will take serious losses probably, but al Qaeda, unless they find a way to escape, are about to be slaughtered. Nobody is dropping leaflets asking them to surrender. Our guys want to kill them, and that’s the plan.
A positive indicator on the 19th and the 20th is that most local people apparently are happy that al Qaeda is being trapped and killed. Civilians are pointing out IEDs and enemy fighters, so that’s not working so well for al Qaeda. Clearly, I cannot do a census, but that says something about the locals.
The prep work in Dalyia has been going on for months. This is full-on “surge” in action. If the battles here are successful and the developments in An Anbar remain on track, it’s going to be a huge summer.