Sunday | March 23, 2003
Underestimating Iraqi will to fight
Why is everyone so amazed?
There was continuing Iraqi resistance at Basra, Iraq's second city in the far south, and, at Najaf, U.S. officers expressed amazement at pickup truck attacks, a tactic dating from the 1980's Chad civil war in the Sahara desert.
The Iraqis, while massively outgunned, were also using rocket propelled grenades, machineguns and small arms to good effect to pin down U.S. forces reluctant to risk casualties.
If the tactic worked well at Umm Qasr in the relatively open territory of a port-side industrial zone, its effectiveness could be multiplied on the outskirts of Baghdad where U.S. concern to avoid civilian casualties would be far greater.
Iraq's toughest troops are arrayed south of the capital.
In Kuwait, former oil minister Ali al-Baghli said the time taken to capture Umm Qasr might undermine any faith ordinary Iraqis had that the Americans could topple Saddam Hussein.
"We are astonished that there is still resistance in Umm Qasr after all this time. It is a very small place.
"If it takes them this long to capture Umm Qasr, how long will it take to capture Tikrit or Baghdad?"
No Scuds. No WMDs. No attacks on Israel. But AK-47s, RPGs and pickup trucks.
Thank the gods I'm being "defended" (per Bush) from these pickup trucks of mass destruction. I will definitely sleep better tonight.
(Actually, I wont...)
Posted March 23, 2003 07:40 PM | Comments (92)