Map of Special Groups Activity in Iraq
Updated as of September 30, 2008, this document maps Multi-National Force-Iraq press releases on activity by and against Special Groups. The press releases are plotted by the location of the incident in chronological order by month. Efforts have been made to plot the data points with as much accuracy as possible. Approximate placemarks are noted in the description. Incidents with unspecified locations in Baghdad have been given placemarks in Sadr City, Baghdad, as this area is a known hub of Special Groups activity. Kinetic operations against Special Groups, incidents of EFP detonations or discoveries, and finds of caches containing Iranian weapons associated with Special Groups have all been documented. This list is not exhaustive of Special Groups activity in Iraq, but it does include all MNF-I press releases with confirmed or probable Special Groups involvement.
Iranian-backed Special Groups have become increasingly active in Baghdad and central Iraq since mid-2007. These groups principally target US forces operating in the area, in the hopes of prompting their eventual withdrawal.
They also actively seek to undermine the Maliki government. The hallmark weapon of Special Groups is the explosively-formed penetrator (EFP), an especially lethal IED capable of penetrating heavily-armored vehicles.
Special Groups operate throughout
Intelligence from the January 20, 2007 Special Groups attack on a
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Herve Bar, “Baghdad security guard by day, insurgent by night,” Agence France Presse, September 23, 2007.
BabakDehghanpisheh, "Iraq's New Guns for Hire," Newsweek, May 7, 2007; Department of Defense News Briefing with Multi-National Division-Center and 3rd Infantry Division Commander Maj. Gen. Rick Lynch, Topic: Operation Marne Husky, Location: Pentagon, Arlington, VA, August 24, 2007.