Iraqi Resistance Report for events of Thursday, 3 February 2005. Translated and/or compiled by Muhammad Abu Nasr, member, editorial board, the Free Arab Voice.
Thursday, 3 February 2005.
Firce fighting rages for six hours in al-Qa’im at midday. Fatimah’s brother martyred in combat.
In a dispatch posted at 7:50pm Mecca time Thursday night, the Mafkarat al-Islam correspondent in al-Qa’im on the border with Syria reported that a fierce battle between the Iraqi Resistance and US Marines raged from about 10am until 4pm local time Thursday. The last hour of battle was relatively less intense and the fighting ended with the withdrawal of US forces under heavy cover from helicopters and fighter planes. The fighter planes attacked houses of local inhabitants in several parts of the city of al-Qa’im, killing 11 civilian residents, including three women and four children.
A Resistance commander told the correspondent that all Resistance organizations took part in the fighting Thursday. The commander told Mafkarat al-Islam that “the Resistance destroyed three American tanks, killing all the soldiers inside. It destroyed five Humvees, killing a number of the US troops who were driving in those vehicles. And the Resistance also destroyed on American armored vehicle and disabled a second, and took one mercenary serving the US forces prisoner.” The commander said that at that time they were still unsure what nationality the mercenary was, but it was thought probable that he was from some country in North Africa.
Regarding the day’s casualties, the commander said, “More than 31 American soldiers were killed and more than 20 more were wounded. Helicopters evacuated them to one of their bases. On the Resistance side, 14 fighters were martyred and five more were wounded, one of them seriously.”
The correspondent learned from the Resistance commander that the Americans would be attacking al-Qa’im again later tonight (Thursday night) because they suffered heavy losses during the day’s fighting.
The correspondent also reported that US occupation forces disarmed a car bomb that the Resistance had prepared for them in al-Qa’im after a traitor working for the Americans informed them of the bomb. But as they were working to disable the bomb, an explosive device blew up, killing four American soldiers who were on foot. One other US soldier was slightly wounded.
The correspondent reported that a police first lieutenant confirmed the incident of the bombing and the deaths of the four American troops, and added that the Resistance had booby-trapped a house in west al-Qa’im and that also exploded in the faces of the occupation troops at about 8am Thursday. On that occasion the Resistance sent a person to tell the Americans that there were “Arab fighters” in the house. When the US troops stormed into the building, it blew up over them. The policeman told Mafkarat al-Islam that more than 21 US soldiers were killed or wounded in that house bombing.
The Mafkarat al-Islam correspondent attended funeral prayers in the local mosque for the Resistance martyrs who were then buried in the Martyrs’ Cemetery in al-Qa’im. One of the martyrs was a man named Khalid, who was the brother of “Fatimah” a woman from around Abu Ghurayb whose famous letter disclosing that she had been gang raped by US jailers was widely reported, as was her death in a Resistance bombardment about a week later. Khalid was able to inflict losses on the US forces before falling a martyr, eyewitnesses told the correspondent.
For his part the Mafkarat al-Islam correspondent in Abu Ghurayb confirmed that Fatimah’s brother Khalid had indeed gone to al-Qa’im to fight the occupation forces there. The correspondent reported that Khalid did not want it said that he fought in Abu Ghurayb and died to avenge his sister. He therefore resolved to go to the farthest most point in al-Anbar Province to fight side-by-side with his brothers in al-Qa’im. This information was supplied to Mafkarat al-Islam by one of the martyr Khalid’s relatives who lives in Abu Ghurayb, 30km west of Baghdad.
(For Fatimah’s letter from Abu Ghurayb prison, see Iraqi Resistance Report, Saturday, 18 December 2004. For the story of the martyrdom of Fatimah and her brother Khalid’s prayer in the Abu Ghurayb mosque, see Iraqi Resistance Report for Friday, 7 January 2005.)
Earlier, in a dispatch posted at 3:05pm Mecca time Thursday, the Mafkarat al-Islam correspondent in the city of al-Qa’im on the border with Syria reported that fierce fighting was at the moment of writing going on in the al-Mu‘allimin and ad-Dubbat neighborhoods in the center of the city between more than 50 Iraqi Resistance fighters and US Marines supported by aircraft, tanks, and armored vehicles.
The combat broke out at about 10am Thursday morning, local time when US forces began storming and searching houses in the area. Resistance forces armed with light and medium weapons, including C5K and RPG7 rockets, as well as surface-to-air SAM7 and SAM9 and Strela anti-aircraft rockets met the Americans in battle.
The correspondent reported that a preliminary casualty count reveals that as of 12 noon local time, two tanks had been set ablaze and one armored vehicle disabled. Four Humvees were destroyed and 19 US troops were killed. Eight Resistance fighters had been martyred, three of them fraternal Arab volunteers.
US seals off city, raids houses on personal orders of George W. Bush.
Eyewitnesses reported that large numbers of US troops backed by tanks and armored vehicles surrounded the city of ar-Rutbah in al-Anbar Province cutting it off from the outside world, prior to launching raids and searches of houses in retribution for the shooting down of an American aircraft a week ago as it headed eastwards towards ar-Ramadi.
The Jordanian newspaper al-‘Arab al-Yawm reported that troops told local people that the assault on local houses was ordered by US President George Bush personally, because high-ranking officers were lost in the downing of the craft which constituted a major blow to the US occupation.
Resistance shoots down unmanned spy plane near Hit.
Iraqi Resistance fighters in the city of Hit shot down an unmanned US spy place at about 6:15 local time, according to a Mafkarat al-Islam dispatch posted at 7:15pm Thursday night Mecca time. The correspondent reported eyewitnesses as saying that the plane came under Resistance gunfire and went down in the village of al-Bu ‘Assaf, west of Hit. In his dispatch the correspondent wrote that at that time, US forces were searching for the wreckage of the aircraft.
Resistance forces kill 12 puppet soldiers near Kirkuk.
The puppet “Iraqi army” armed and trained by the US invaders, on Thursday announced that Iraqi Resistance fighters had ambushed and killed 12 puppet troops near the city of Kirkuk late on Wednesday night, Reuters reported. Puppet Brigadier General Anwar Amin told Reuters that the Resistance forces “opened fire at the heads of the [puppet] troops after stopping a bus that was taking them to Kirkuk.
Resistance roadside bomb kills two US troops.
An Iraqi Resistance roadside bomb exploded by a US military column in the al-Islah az-Zira‘i neighborhood of central Mosul at about 12:30pm Thursday. Eyewitnesses told the local correspondent for Mafkarat al-Islam that the bomb exploded by the wheel of a US Humvee, destroying the wheel and killing two American troops and seriously wounding two more.
The Iraqi puppet police announced that two Iraqi puppet policemen were killed and 14 others wounded, while 36 more had “gone missing” after an Iraqi Resistance ambush on a road south of Baghdad on Thursday. The puppet police were on their way from ad-Diwaniyah, 180km south of Baghdad, to the Iraqi capital where they were to pick up new puppet police cars when the Resistance attacked. Reuters reported that officials in ad-Diwaniyah said that a large number of puppet police left the city for Baghdad. Meanwhile American forces closed off the scene of the attack which was near Abu Ghurayb on the outskirts of Baghdad.
US admits two Marines killed Wednesday.
The US occupation forces announced on Thursday that two American Marines had been killed on Wednesday in al-Anbar Province. Reuters reported the US military announcement, which as usual provided no details in an effort to conceal as much as possible the true extent and impact of its losses.
Resistance fires Strela, shoots down US Apache helicopter.
Iraqi Resistance forces shot down a US Apache helicopter in the al-Iskandariyah area north of al-Hillah at precisely 2:30pm Thursday afternoon, Mafkarat al-Islam reported eyewitnesses as saying. The Mafkarat al-Islam correspondent in the area personally saw the flaming helicopter plunge to earth. The crew of the craft was killed instantly, and their charred bodies were found on the ground. At the time the correspondent filed his report, posted at 3:10pm Mecca time, US forces were encircling the site of the downed craft.
Witnesses reported that a number of Resistance fighters fired a Strela rocket at the helicopter as it was hovering at a low altitude. Puppet “national guards” encircled the craft as firemen worked to extinguish the fires. More than a dunum of farmland planted to wheat and barley was set on fire by the burning craft.
Resistance pounds US camp with 30 heavy mortar rounds.
Iraqi Resistance forces fired thirty 120mm mortar rounds into the main US base in Ba‘qubah, east of Baghdad, at 4pm Thursday afternoon, witnesses told Mafkarat al-Islam. The correspondent for Mafkarat al-Islam in Ba‘qubah personally saw dense clouds of smoke rising and heard the sounds of explosions going off inside the American facility. US helicopters could be seen hovering over the camp half an hour after the Resistance barrage, as they came in to evacuate casualties.
Residents whose houses are near the American camp reported that they watched from their rooftops as the Americans evacuated US dead and wounded.
The Americans opened fire from within the camp in the direction of where the barrage had come from, killing four Iraqi Resistance fighters who were taking cover in one of the gardens eight kilometers away from the camp.
Local people found fault with the martyrs for not quickly withdrawing from the position from which they bombarded the American camp as their other comrades had done. The insisted on continuing to fire their mortars at the Americans, enabling the US artillery to pinpoint their position.
In other news:
Zionists to lease special forces base to US military for training in Arab urban warfare.
The Zionist regime in occupied Palestine has agreed to a proposal advanced by the Zionist Chief of Staff to rent the Zelem military base in the an-Naqab Desert (“Negev”) to US military forces, according to a story published by the Palestine Information Center.
Zionist sources claimed that the aim of the rental agreement was simply to take advantage of major American reductions in the Zionists’ enormous payments deficit to the United States. The imbalance in payments has become so severe, they claim, that it has brought many military cooperation arrangements between the two aggressive states to a halt.
In fact, closer military cooperation between the US and the Zionists is clearly a major reason for the arrangement to lease the base. The Zelem base is mainly used to train Zionist special military units, particularly those that fight in densely populated residential areas. The base features mock-ups of buildings resembling those found in Arab cities, allowing special forces to train in an environment similar to that in which they will be doing their killing.
Sources: al-‘Arab al-Yawm daily newspaper, ‘Amman, Jordan, Thursday, 3 February 2005.