US air drops supplies to Iraqi troops
We're going to be seeing a lot more of this as ISIS advances in Anbar province.
US planes drooped several hundred tons of supplies on Saturday to Iraqi troops who are cut off from Baghdad:
US military aircraft have delivered food, water and ammunition to besieged Iraqi troops battling Islamic State militants, the Pentagon said Saturday, as the coalition pursued its air assault in Iraq and Syria.
The move marked the first time that coalition aircraft airdropped supplies to Iraqi government forces. Similar drops were previously part of humanitarian missions for civilians, such as Yazidis and Turkmen.
The airdrops of vital supplies to troops in northern Iraq on Friday and Saturday came at Baghdad's request, US Central Command said in a statement.
"US military forces conducted multiple airdrops in Iraq in the vicinity of Baiji... to resupply Iraqi security forces operating in the area," it added.
In total, 36 bundles containing 7,328 halal meals, 2,065 gallons of water and 16,000 pounds of ammunition were dropped.
While Baiji remains under Baghdad's control, nearby towns "are contested as ISIL continues to conduct operations in the area," the statement said, using another acronym to identify the IS group.
The embattled Iraqi army is facing increasing pressure from IS jihadists in several hotspots.
The airdrops come after US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel described the campaign against IS in Iraq as "difficult," particularly in the western province of Anbar.
"Anbar province is in trouble. We know that," he said on Friday during a visit to Colombia.
"This is a difficult effort. It is going to take time. It won't be easy. So, yes, there is a lot of uncertainty in Anbar right now."
It should be noted that there are two big military bases in Anbar that, if they fall into the hands of ISIS, would replenish most of what they've lost in two months of coalition bombings.
Iraqis are getting nervous as ISIS creeps closer to Baghdad. The feed that fear, ISIS has established sevearl terror cells in the capital who routinely carry out mass casualty suicide bombings.
A triple suicide bombing killed 26 Kurdish security forces northeast of Baghdad on Sunday and a roadside bomb killed the police chief of the western Anbar province, dealing major blows to Iraqi security forces struggling to combat the Islamic State extremist group.
The triple attack took place in Qara Tappah, in the ethnically and communally mixed Diyala province, according to an official from the Kurdish Asayish security forces. He said the first bomber detonated an explosives vest at the gateway to a security compound that also houses the office of a main Kurdish political party.
Minutes later, two suicide bombers drove cars filled with explosives into the compound, causing heavy damage. At least 60 people were wounded in the attack.
Islamic militants have seized some towns in the volatile Diyala province and have clashed with Kurdish forces there.
Hospital officials confirmed the casualties. All officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the media.
In the Anbar attack, Brig. Gen. Ahmed al-Dulaimi was killed while traveling in a convoy north of the provincial capital Ramadi through an area cleared by Iraqi security forces a day earlier, according to Anbar councilman Faleh al-Issawi. It was not immediately clear if others were killed or wounded.
As the noose tightens, expect an increase in these sorts of bombings so that at the first inkling that ISIS troops are in Baghdad, the people will probably panic thus making defense of the city more difficult.