Why is the Iraqi Army Afraid of ISIS?
Back in June of 2014, the Iraqi army ran from ISIS terrorists as they advanced on Mosul, leaving millions of dollars worth of US military hardware and weapons behind. According to recent reports, they’ve once again fled as the bid to retake Mosul stalled. So far, this time they haven’t left any weapons behind.
Running in the face of the enemy
Military Times reported that on Thursday, March 24, Iraqis were supposed to push through three villages on the way to Mosul, but got “bogged down” with everything from bad weather to desertions. By that Saturday, they weren’t moving forward. The Kurdish forces claimed they had no will to fight.
“After the first day, the Iraqi army was unable to take a single meter of (Islamic State) territory successfully. No one should expect the least success from the Iraqi army. They have no will to fight.” Kurdish Col. Mahdi Younis
The excuse was everything from having to go “get new uniforms,” to “everything is proceeding as planned.” Well, maybe not.
Iraqi Army photo via Defense Industry Daily
The Daily Beast reported
“ISIS “left the village, and came back after a few hours,” said one tired Shia Arab fighter named Mohammed who is part of the Shia-led Hashid Shaabi militia forces. He was angry at the Iraqi army, and the lack of U.S. air support after returning from the fight. “There were no airstrikes, where are the airstrikes?” he complained.”
Fox News reported,
“The Iraqi Army commenced an assault on ISIS strongholds around Mosul, but when ISIS fired back, the Iraqi Army ran away and the assaults ended,” a western, Iraq-based security and defense specialist told FoxNews.com of last week’s failed offensive. “So now they are regrouping and rethinking their next options.”
Iraqi officials claimed the operation came to a halt when they determined they needed reinforcements to hold onto the villages they took. Iraqi Army Maj. Gen. Najm Abdullah al-Jubbouri said ISIS fighters had dug a network of tunnels and had suicide bombers and truck bombs waiting for them.
“They retook some territory but fled shortly (afterward,) during the nighttime. There hasn’t been progress so far.” Yakhi Hamza, director of The 1st New Allied Expeditionary Force
Forward motion is made difficult if the fighting force fails to fight. The Iraqi Army is primarily Shia. ISIS is Sunni. The U.S. has poured millions of dollars and manpower into training the Iraqi Army. Officials say the the bid to retake Mosul may now be pushed back months – maybe even until next year. Sad for the thousands of residents of Mosul trapped inside the ISIS-held city.