The Glorious Jihad
It is suspected that many of the terrorists who are now fighting in Ubaydi fled from Husaybah and Karabilah, the first two cities that were secured by Iraqi and Coalition Forces at the beginning of the operation. While the fighting has been sporadic, it has been characterized by commanders on the ground as some of the heaviest since Operation Steel Curtain began Nov. 5. Intelligence reports indicate that the strong resistance to the Iraqi and Coalition push into the city is due in large part to the fact that terrorists believe they are trapped and have nowhere else to go.
An additional 30 terrorists have been killed since last night, for an overall total of approximately 80 killed since entering the city yesterday morning. Most of those terrorists were targeted by coalition air strikes, although some were killed in direct small-arms fire engagements with Iraqi and Coalition Forces on the ground.
Iraqi and Coalition Forces continue to clear the city house-by-house, occasionally encountering buildings that are rigged with explosives and triggered to detonate upon entering the building. Numerous weapons caches have also been seized, to include several that contained suicide vests and bomb making material. Overall, there have been 36 weapons caches found and destroyed during Operation Steel Curtain.
Iraqi and Coalition Forces have also discovered numerous improvised explosive devices (IEDs) and mines during the operation, the vast majority of which were destroyed by Coalition Forces before they could inflict any damage. The precise locations of many IEDs were revealed by detained terrorists. There have been a total of 107 IEDs and mines discovered during the course of Operation Steel Curtain.
In this account from the Marine Corps Times, it seems fighting the infidels may not be the glorious fight as seen in all those spiffy terrorist brochures.
"Intelligence reports indicate that the strong resistance to the Iraqi and coalition push into the city is due in large part to the fact that insurgents believe they are trapped and have nowhere else to go," the military said. "Several detainees were captured trying to sneak out of the area by crawling among a flock of sheep."