“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