The standoff between the police and Hezbollah Brigades may portend an upcoming power struggle between Iraq’s established security forces and the Iranian-supported Shia militias that make up the Popular Mobilization Units.
The Iraqi government announced the liberation of Tal Afar in northern Iraq earlier today. The offensive to retake the city began on Aug. 20 and progressed quickly. Three Iraqi army divisions, the Counterterrorism Service, Federal Police, the Popular Mobilization Forces and Kurdish Regional Government Peshmerga all took part and were backed by the US-led coalition.
The Islamic State claims to have carried out 12 suicide bombings south and east of Mosul during the first hours of the battle to retake the city. However, the Iraqi Popular Mobilization Units (PMU) claims that the suicide attackers were neutralized. The so-called caliphate has increasingly relied on its “martyrs” as it has lost ground in the past.
Iranian-backed Shia militias in Iraq continue to showcase both the ownership and usage of US-made vehicles and equipment.
The photo offers more evidence of another Iranian-backed militia in Iraq owning and using a US-made M1 Abrams tank.