Continuing Ops, Trouble in Mosul
While Operation Quick Strike continues, Coalition forces conduct Operations Able Warrior and Vanguard Thunder in and around Baghdad. The operations are being conducted simultaneously along the Euphrates river and are targeting specific terrorists cells.
In Mosul, a letter from Abu Zayd (the "emir of Farming reform battalion on the west side") to Zarqawi is intercepted. The picture he paints of the leadership of the insurgency and conditions within the insurgency is not pretty.
[Abu Zayd] cited the incompetence of Mosul's emirs and the disobedience of other people in the network. It discussed "the noticeable decrease in the attacks carried out by the mujahideen" and said that suicide bombings seem to be of more "quantity and not quality."
The letter writer said that collaboration among insurgent leaders is lacking and that "Muslim money" was being squandered on "petty expenses, cars and phones." He also wrote that "foreign fighters endure 'deplorable' conditions, including lack of pay, housing problems and marginalization."
The letter offer solutions, including replacing the emirs, forming "new symbiotic battalions with diverse experience," and "resolving the housing problem."
"Be attentive to the jihad in Mosul and pursue its development, because the fall of Mosul in the hands of the mujahedeen is possible, and because it relieves the pressure off the other cities such as al-Qaim, Tal Afar." [emphasis mine]
This squares with a letter written by Abu Asim al-Yemeni al-Qusaymi, a representative of Al-Qaida's Committee in Iraq and member of its Shura council [a senior decision making body], which discussed the poor morale, leadership and conditions the fighters endure.
Abu Zayd is an asute jihad, and recognizes the importance of Mosul is occupying the Coalitions attention and diverting resources from the Coalition's Euphrates River operations. Michael Yon has been reporting extensively on the operations in Mosul. The fighting is hard but US and Iraqi Army units in the Mosul region are making real progress in rooting out the insurgeny and restoring order.
This situation in Mosul has been reported to have been deteriorating since the capture of Abu Tahla and the subsequent dismantlement of his organization in Mosul. The persistent assualt on al Qaeda in Iraq's middlement continues to take its toll on the organization, forcing greener leaders with fewer contacts to take command at a time when the Coalition is just beginning to bring its full might to bear in the Anbar province.