Baghdad City (مدينة بغداد)
Baghdad Security Districts:
- 9 Nissan (تسعة نيسان)
- Adhamiyah (الاعظمية)
- Kadhimiyah (الكاظمية)
- Karadah (الكرادة)
- Karkh (الكرخ)
- Mansour (المنصور)
- Rasheed (الرشيد)
- Rusafa (الرصافة)
- Sadr City (مدينة الصدر)
Baghdad is the capital of Iraq. It is divided into east and west by the Tigris River. Baghdad consists of nine security districts and over seventy neighborhoods. Its population consists of every major ethnic and sectarian group in Iraq. The city's population is between 6 and 8 million; the population displacements of 2006 cause the divergence in these estimates. Approximately one-third of Iraq’s population lives in Baghdad and its suburbs.
Baghdad had been one of the most violent areas in all of Iraq. The scale of violence in Baghdad was due primarily to the strategic importance of the city and the complexity of its enemy system. Baghdad contained vital strongholds for both Shi’a extremists and Sunni insurgent groups. These groups competed for control of terrain in the district. Consequently by late 2006, as both groups were deeply embroiled in a sectarian turf war, violence in the city reached unprecedented levels. US operations in Baghdad and its surrounding areas since early 2007 have targeted both Shi’a and Sunni enemy networks operating in the region. Now, violence has declined and enemy groups have been fragmented across the capital. However, these security improvements are by no means assured; extremist elements remain and enemy groups seek to reinfiltrate former strongholds.
The enemy system in Baghdad is composed of two distinct enemy groups—Shi’a militia extremists, who are predominantly members either of the Moqtada as-Sadr’s Jaysh al-Mahdi (JAM) or Iranian-backed Special Groups, and Sunni insurgents, the largest and most lethal of which is al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI). These groups interacted in southern Baghdad in a way that escalated violence and instability in the region. Shi’a death squads violently cleansed Sunni residents of many mixed neighborhoods, while AQI targeted Shi’a and Christian populations via car bombs and execution-style killings.
Al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI) in Baghdad
AQI is the most important and most lethal Sunni insurgent group in Baghdad. From 2005 to 2006, AQI infiltrated a number of neighborhoods, primarily in west Baghdad, and began to establish control, often under the auspices of protection from Shi’a death squads. AQI conducted a violent campaign to cleanse the neighborhoods of its Shi’a and Christian residents and impose its radical agenda on the Sunni citizens. AQI’s violence was not limited to Shiites; scores of Sunni residents were also killed al-Qaeda death squads and IEDs.1 By late 2006, AQI had heavily-fortified strongholds in the following areas: the Mansour district, Doura, and the Adhamiyah neighborhood.
The Mansour district is located in western Baghdad, in the area that stretches from the Abu Ghraib area and the Baghdad airport to the Karkh district. A predominantly Sunni district, Mansour neighbors the Shi’a-dominated areas of Kadhimiyah to the north and East Rasheed to the south. Prior to the 2003 invasion, the district was home to many wealthy Sunnis and Ba’athist officials. Hence, when Saddam Hussein’s regime fell, it quickly became stronghold for the Sunni insurgency. Throughout 2005 and 2006, AQI became increasingly embedded in the district; by late 2006, the neighborhoods of Ghazaliyah, Ameriyah, Khadra, Jamia, Yarmouk, and Hateen were thoroughly-infiltrated by AQI.2 These western neighborhoods were important strongholds because they were located along AQI’s lines of communication to its sanctuaries west of Baghdad and in Anbar province. Al-Qaeda would traffic fighters, funds, weapons, and ammunition along routes that ran from the Syrian border, through its strongholds in Anbar province to Abu Ghraib, directly into Mansour. The primary AQI rat lines in Mansour, known as Alternate Supply Route (ASR) Sword and ASR Michigan, run directly into the center of Baghdad.3 Operations Together Forward I and Together Forward II tried to clear the Mansour district in the summer and fall of 2006, but instead introduced elements of the Shi’a-dominated National Police that carried out sectarian killings and kidnappings. These activities were consistent with persistent attempts by Jaysh al-Mahdi to penetrate Mansour from Kadhimiyah to the north and Bayaa and Aamel to the south.
The Doura area in northeast Rasheed was also, until late 2007, a major AQI stronghold in Baghdad. Like Mansour, Doura also occupies strategic terrain—situated along the Doura expressway, a main thoroughfare into eastern Baghdad, and Route Jackson (the main road leading to both Sunni and Shi’a areas south of Baghdad). It is also home to an oil refinery and power plant.4 The primary neighborhoods of Doura include Masafee, Jazeera, Hadar, and Mechanics. Prior to 2003, Doura was a mixed area with Shi’a, Sunni, and even Christian populations. Throughout 2005 and 2006, Sunni insurgents concentrated in Doura and carried out an intensely violent campaign against Shi’a and Christian residents, conducting bomb attacks and extra-judicial killings.5 By late 2006, AQI positions in Doura were heavily-fortified with deep-buried improvised explosive devices (IEDs). Their strongholds in Doura functioned as an important transit point for car bombs and other weapons flowing into Baghdad from other al-Qaeda sanctuaries just south of the capital in Hawr Rajab and Arab Jabour.
The third major al-Qaeda stronghold, and the only one in eastern Baghdad, was the Adhamiyah neighborhood. The working-class Adhamiyah neighborhood is located along the Tigris River on the western edge of the Adhamiyah district. It remains the main Sunni enclave in predominantly Shi’a eastern Baghdad. It had traditionally been home to Sunni Arabs, many of whom supported Saddam Hussein’s regime and remain hostile to current the Shi’a-led government.6 The Sunni neighborhoods of Adhamiyah and nearby Waziriya are almost completely surrounded by Shi’a-dominated areas. In early 2006, Shi’a death squads began to enter the Adhamiyah neighborhood, perpetrating kidnapping and execution-style killings.7 In response, many Sunni residents turned to al-Qaeda in Iraq for protection. Consequently, the Adhamiyah neighborhood became a heavily-fortified al-Qaeda stronghold. Moreover, Adhamiyah’s location in northern Baghdad along the Tigris makes it a node on the AQI lines of communication that run along the Tigris River Valley from Mosul, in northern Iraq, to the capital.
From these strongholds, AQI was able to conduct attacks not only on Iraqi civilians in predominantly Shi’a neighborhoods, but also on Coalition and Iraqi forces throughout the city. Al-Qaeda’s tactics include suicide bombings, improvised explosive device (IED) attacks, kidnapping and murder, sniper fire, mortar and rocket attacks.8 By the start of the Baghdad Security Plan, in February 2007, AQI had established a formidable network operating in its many sanctuaries in Baghdad and the belts. Although AQI’s network has been substantially degraded within Baghdad over the course of 2007, it has proven its ability to reinfiltrate formerly cleared areas and conduct destabilizing attacks, and therefore, it remains a major target for Coalition and Iraqi Forces.
Jaysh al-Mahdi (JAM) Expansion in Baghdad
The Jaysh al-Mahdi (Mahdi Army) is the militia of Moqtada as-Sadr, a major Shi'a political figure in Iraq. The Jaysh al-Mahdi, commonly referred to by its Arabic acronym, JAM, first became prominent in April 2004 when it fought against US forces in East Baghdad and in Najaf. In addition to fighting US and Coalition Forces, JAM actively contested control of Baghdad, engaging in a territorial struggle with AQI and other Sunni groups for control of the city. It has been held responsible for much of the sectarian cleansing in the Sunni neighborhoods in 2005 and 2006. JAM also effectively infiltrated units of the Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) during this period, including both the Iraqi Army and the National Police.
While JAM operated throughout Baghdad, it had several important strongholds, namely, the neighborhoods in Sadr City, Kadhimiyah, and West Rasheed. Sadr City is the hub of JAM activity in Baghdad. The sprawling slum in northeastern Baghdad is home to over 2 million Iraqis and has the largest Shi’a population in Baghdad. Sadr City is rather isolated and hence, protected from the mixed and Sunni areas of Baghdad. The Army Canal forms the western border of Sadr City. The Army Canal and the roads along its edges (Imam Ali Street and Umar bin Khalab Street) bisect eastern Baghdad, running from northwest to southeast. Another canal forms Sadr City’s eastern border. Sadr City presents one of the biggest security challenges for US forces in Baghdad. Prior to 2008, the area was heavily controlled by the Jaysh al-Mahdi. Militiamen controlled the entrances to that neighborhood and its thoroughfares, protecting residents from outsiders and inducing residents to join the militia. The residents of Sadr City relied entirely on the Jaysh al-Mahdi and the Office of the Martyr Sadr, the political wing of the Sadrist trend, for security and essential services. US forces did not have a permanent presence in Sadr City, and those US forces responsible for Sadr City operated out of Joint Security Stations and Combat Outposts on the southern and eastern edges of the district. Hence, it became the center of JAM militia activity.
From Sadr City, JAM elements expanded into the surrounding districts of eastern Baghdad. The east Baghdad districts of 9 Nissan, Karadah, and Rusafa were all dominated by JAM. The Shaab and Ur neighborhoods, on the eastern edge of the Adhamiyah district, were also heavily influenced by JAM. Because of the road network, these were the neighborhoods through which militiamen probably travel when entering or leaving the northern or western fringes of Sadr City. Since 2006, Sunnis in these eastern districts were targets of forced displacements and execution-style killings by JAM militia elements.
By early 2006, JAM had expanded into western Baghdad along rat lines that ran from Sadr City, through the Adhamiyah and Rusafa districts, and across the Tigris into Kadhimiyah. The Kadhimiyah district in northwest Baghdad neighbors the Tigris River to the east, and the districts of Karkh and Mansour to the south. The Kadhimiyah neighborhood, on the eastern edge of the district, is home to a revered shrine for the seventh Shi'a Imam, Musa al-Kazimi. Control of this neighborhood, and therefore the shrine, is critical for JAM, both symbolically, for obvious reasons, and strategically, as the donations from pilgrims can generate great revenues. JAM used Kadhimiyah as the base for its expansion program in western Baghdad. Over the course of 2006, JAM militias pushed further west into Kadhimiyah, displacing Sunni families from Hurriyah and Shula in late 2006. From their Kadhimiyah stronghold, JAM militias also expanded down through Karkh and Mansour into the neighborhoods of West Rasheed.9 The attempts by JAM death squads to target the Sunni families in these areas brought them into conflict with AQI and other insurgent groups in these areas.
The neighborhoods of West Rasheed formed the base for JAM expansion in southern Baghdad. The neighborhoods of Aamel and Bayaa are located in northwest Rasheed, along Route Irish (the road leading to the Baghdad International Airport). Aamel and Bayaa were once mixed, working-class neighborhoods;10 however, following the infiltration of Shi’a militias throughout 2006 and the intensification of their campaign against Sunni residents in 2007, the area is now predominantly Shi’a.11 In these neighborhoods, JAM militias also controlled local government and access to basic services, further isolating any remaining Sunni residents.12 The JAM militias and death squads did not limit their activity to Aamel and Bayaa. From these neighborhoods, these extremists expanded further into the district, into the neighborhoods of Jihad, Shurta, and Risalah, conducting extra-judicial killings and forced displacements of Sunni residents.13
South of Bayaa along Route Jackson is the neighborhood of Saydiyah. Located at the heart of the district, Saydiyah sits along key routes that not only link East and West Rasheed, but also link Baghdad with outlying Sunni areas and Shi’a strongholds further south. Hence, the neighborhood holds strategic importance for Shi’a, Sunni, and US forces alike. Saydiyah also sat between the JAM -dominated areas to the west, and Sunni insurgent strongholds to the east. As a result, Saydiyah was one of the primary battlegrounds for the contest between AQI insurgents and Shi’a militias.14 Though Saydiyah remains a mixed neighborhood, it was once predominantly Sunni and home to many Ba’athist government officials.15 In 2004, Sunni insurgent groups, including AQI, began to infiltrate Saydiyah; and over the course of the next year, the Sunni insurgency became more deeply rooted in the neighborhood.16 Despite a push by US forces to clear the area in late 2006, AQI continued its attacks against Coalition and Iraqi Security Forces as well as Shi’a civilians in Saydiyah.17 Violence only escalated further in 2006, as the competition AQI and other Sunni insurgent factions intensified; as AQI stepped up its bombing campaign against Shi’a civilians;18 and as Shi’a militia cleansing of Sunni civilians increased on the heels of nominal US clearing operations under OTF I and II.19 By the end of 2006, sectarian violence in Saydiyah had reached unprecedented levels as the contest between AQI and Shi’a death squads raged.20
Operation Fardh al-Qanoon
In the wake of the failed effort to secure Baghdad from mid to late-2006 under Operations Together Forward I and II (OTF I and II), President Bush announced a new US strategy in Iraq in early January 2007. Termed a “New Way Forward,” this strategy emphasized securing the Iraqi population. When the Baghdad Security Plan, or Operation Fardh al-Qanoon, was launched month later in February 2007, US forces began to fan out throughout the city, conducting clearing operations and establishing permanent bases in the neighborhoods at Joint Security Stations (JSSs) and Combat Outposts (COPs). Within Baghdad, the mission has remained focused securing the population by clearing enemy elements from the city, establishing a permanent presence to prevent enemy reinfiltration, and encouraging reconstruction efforts.
Coalition and Iraqi Forces focused largely on clearing AQI strongholds throughout Baghdad. With the launch of the Baghdad Security Plan in February 2007, operations began in northeast Baghdad, particularly in the Adhamiyah neighborhood. Operation Arrowhead Strike 6 focused clearing operations and an increased patrol presence to Adhamiyah.21 A Combat Outpost (COP) was established in the Adhamiyah security district near the Rusafa border on February 11, 2007, with the purpose of enhancing the presence of US forces in the area.22 Clearing operations also continued to target insurgent and militia activity in the neighborhoods of Adhamiyah, Shaab, and Ur. From April to May, Coalition Forces constructed a concrete barrier wall around the Adhamiyah neighborhood, as part of the Baghdad Security Plan’s “Safe Neighborhood” project.23 These temporary barriers were erected to protect the local population from sectarian attacks, while at the same time, prevent insurgents within Adhamiyah from carrying out violent attacks elsewhere.24 According to US military officials, “Murders [were] down 61 percent in Adhamiyah between the beginning of April, when construction began, and May 28.”25
Large-scale clearing operations were also conducted in northwest Baghdad throughout the spring and early summer of 2007. The 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division (the Dagger Brigade), led by Col. J.B. Burton, teamed with the troops from the 3rd Stryker Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division (Arrowhead Brigade) to clear the Mansour district, beginning in mid-March 2007. Operation Arrowhead Strike 9, as the clearing was termed, targeted AQI elements in the Mansour security district, specifically Ghazaliyah and Ameriyah.26 By May 1, 2007, Arrowhead Strike 9 was completed. Clearing operations then expanded to the neighborhoods of Khadra, Yarmouk, and Mansour during Arrowhead Strike 9.27
Following the major clearing operations in each of these former AQI strongholds, Coalition and Iraqi Forces continued to target any remaining AQI elements, in order to maintain control over the cleared areas and prevent enemy reinfilitration. To solidify these security gains, they worked with Sunni residents who had come forward as security volunteers, particularly in Ghazaliyah, Ameriyah, and Adhamiyah. Concerned Local Citizens (CLC) groups like the Ghazaliyah Guardians, Knights of Ameriyah, and Adhamiyah Critical Infrastructure Guard Force (CIGF)—all later known as Sons of Iraq—partnered with Coalition and Iraqi Security Forces, manning joint checkpoints and protecting local infrastructure.28 This partnership contributed to the significant security improvements in the district and the degradation of the AQI network in Baghdad.
The clearing of Doura, perhaps the most difficult AQI stronghold to clear, began shortly after the launch of Fardh al-Qanoon in the market area. During March and April of 2007, Coalition Forces fanned out into the neighborhoods of East Rasheed, beginning construction on JSSs and COPs throughout the area.29 US forces began operations in northwestern Doura with the clearing of the market area. In an effort to secure and revive the Doura market, Coalition Forces constructed hardened blast walls around the perimeter.30 By the spring of 2007, Rasheed clearing operations had become the main effort for MND-B Soldiers, as they expanded into further into the AQI-controlled neighborhoods. In late May 2007, Coalition Forces expanded the aggressive clearing operations into East Rasheed during Operation Dragon Fire East. Roughly 2,000 US Soldiers took part in Dragon Fire East, along with Iraqi forces from the 7th Brigade, 2nd National Police Division.31 Coalition Forces actively targeted AQI networks across Doura.
Coalition and Iraqi Forces worked to hold these cleared areas throughout the summer of 2007, by continuing to target AQI remnants and prevent the reinfiltration of insurgents. In the fall of 2007, they maintained their offensive momentum by conducting another large-scale operation in Rasheed. On September 16, 2007, US Soldiers from the 2nd Stryker Cavalry and 4th BCT, 1st ID launched Operation Dragon Talon II in Rasheed.32 While the brigade-level offensive involved operations across the district, the primary focus for clearing were the areas of southeast Doura, in particular the Hadar neighborhood.33 Following the clearing of AQI from northern Doura and Masafee in the spring, and Saydiyah in the summer, insurgents reconstituted in Hadar, making is one of the last remaining concentrations of AQI in all of Baghdad.34 From September to December 2007, US and Iraqi forces conducted daily operations to capture or kill enemy elements, seize weapons, and clear Hadar.35
Operations against Shi’a Militias in Baghdad
Coalition successes against al-Qaeda in Iraq and the larger Sunni Arab insurgency permitted the re-allocation of resources and effort against a problem that has plagued attempts to establish a stable government in Iraq from the outset. US forces also conducted an aggressive campaign against Shi’a militias and Iranian-backed Special Groups in Baghdad and central Iraq. The pace of operations against these networks intensified dramatically in mid-2007; and by the fall, the Special Groups network was starting to unravel. As a result, in late 2007, Special Groups embarked upon a period of regeneration and preparation. They sought to consolidate their networks and shift their tactics in response to increased pressure by Coalition Forces. By early 2008, Special Groups began to escalate their attacks on Coalition and Iraqi Forces, in what appeared to be the first actions of an impending enemy offensive coordinated with Jaysh al Mahdi.
The escalation culminated in late March 2008, when Prime Minister Maliki’s security offensive in Basra sparked a forceful reaction by Shi’a militias in Baghdad. Iraq Reports 11 and 12 document the militia reaction and Coalition and Iraqi operations against Shi’a militias in Baghdad.
By early 2009, levels of violence were at historic lows. Displaced residents were returning to their homes in larger numbers. In accordance with the Security Agreement, which went into effect on January 1, 2009, the Iraqis assumed control of an increasing number of bases around Baghdad. This was in preparation for the withdrawal of Coalition combat forces from Iraqi cities by June 30, 2009.
Still, enemy groups in Baghdad remained capable of conducting violent attacks. While the period surrounding Provincial Elections was remarkably peaceful, Baghdad witnessed an uptick in attacks in early April 2009, when a series of suicide bomb and vehicle-borne improvised explosive device attacks were perpetrated across the capital.
Excerpted from Kimberly Kagan, et. al., "Iraq Situation Report 2008," Backgrounder 22, Institute for the Study of War, February 8, 2008; and Marisa Cochrane, "Special Groups Regenerate," Iraq Report 11, Institute for the Study of War, September 2, 2008.
1 Dan Murphy and Awadh al-Tee, “In the struggle for Iraq, tug of war over one Baghdad neighborhood,” Christian Science Monitor, June 1, 2006.
2 Institute for the Study of War Interview with Col. J.B. Burton, Commander, 2nd Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, November 14, 2007.
3 Institute for the Study of War Interview with Col. J.B. Burton, Commander, 2nd Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, November 14, 2007.
4 Sam Dagher, “Patrolling Baghdad's Dora neighborhood, where 'gators' lurk; The predominantly Sunni Arab district has become a byword for lawlessness and mayhem,” The Christian Science Monitor, March 30, 2007.
5 Sam Dagher, “Patrolling Baghdad's Dora neighborhood, where 'gators' lurk; The predominantly Sunni Arab district has become a byword for lawlessness and mayhem,” The Christian Science Monitor, March 30, 2007; Tina Susman, “Surge of Optimism Recedes; New Tactics, Not Just More Troops, Are Needed, Experts Say,” Los Angeles Times, June 17, 2007.
6 Edward Wong, “Sunni District in Baghdad Is Sealed Off,” The New York Times, April 18, 2006.
7 Sabrina Tavernise, “Iraqi Death Toll Exceeded 34,000 in 2006, U.N. Says,” The New York Times, January 17, 2007; Sudarsan Raghavan, “Distrust Breaks the Bonds of a Baghdad Neighborhood; In Mixed Area, Violence Defies Peace Efforts,” The Washington Post, September 27, 2006.
8 Multi-National Force-Iraq website.
9 Institute for the Study of War Interview with Col. J.B. Burton, Commander, 2nd Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, November 14, 2007.
10 Tina Susman, “Two Baghdad see no decline in sectarian ‘cleansing; Military officials say violence has eased, but the killings continue,” Los Angeles Times, August 12, 2007.
11 Leila Fadhel and Mohammed al-Dulaimy, “Shiites keep driving Sunnis from homes; A Shiite Muslim militia’s campaign to clear Baghdad neighborhoods of Sunni Muslim residents continues despite US-led security plan,” The Miami Herald, April 12, 2007.
12 Joshua Partlow, “Mahdi Army, not Al-Qaeda, is Enemy No. 1 in Western Baghdad,” The Washington Post, July 16, 2007.
13 United States Army Special Operations Command News Service Press Release 070508-0, “Iraqi SOF Detain Alleged Terrorist Leaders in Baghdad and Diyala Province, ” May 08, 2007; Sudarsan Raghavan, “No Relief From Fear; Despite US Buildup, Families Still Fleeing Baghdad Homes As Violence, Rivalries Loom Over Paralyzed Iraqi Government,” The Washington Post, September 5, 2007.
14 Captain Eric Pribyla, “Combat 6 Checks In,” The Black Lion Times, Vol 1, No. 8, November 2007.
15 Joshua Partlow, “Mahdi Army, not Al-Qaeda, is Enemy No. 1 in Western Baghdad,” The Washington Post, July 16, 2007.
16 Al-Khalidi, Sahr. “Iraq – Trials – Sentence.” Aswat al-Iraq News Service. June 20th, 2005. Translation from Arabic.; Fakhr, Adel. “Iraq – Employees – Attack.” Aswat al-Iraq News Service. July 31st, 2005. Translation from Arabic.; Maki, Handrin. “Assassination of Director of the Office of Dr. Chalabi in Baghdad.” Aswat al-Iraq News Service. August 4th, 2005. Translation from Arabic.
17 Al-Badrawi, Fahd. “Rise in the Number of Dead from the Tragedy of the ‘Alama Bridge; Continuation of the Crisis Inside the Iraqi Government.” Aswat al-Iraq News Service. September 1st, 2005. Translation from Arabic.; Multi-National Force Iraq Press Release. “4th Brigade Soldiers Capture Suspected Terrorists.” September 5th, 2005. Release #A050905b.; Saeed, Muhammad. “Lots of Cash and Documents Found with Detainees of Saydiyah.” Aswat al-Iraq News Service. September 10th, 2005. Translation from Arabic.; Multi-National Force – Iraq Press Release. “Seven Terror Suspects Detained in Morning Raid .” October 3rd, 2005. Release #. A051003d.; Al-Khalidi, Sahr. “Arrest of 50 Terrorists in Various Areas of Baghdad.” Aswat al-Iraq News Service. October 5th, 2005. Translation from Arabic.; Multi-National Force – Iraq Press Release. “Iraqi, US Forces Nab 34 Terror Suspects.” October 7th, 2005. Release # A051007g; Fakhr, Adel. “Explosion of Car Bomb Next to American Convoy in Saydiyah.” Aswat al-Iraq News Service. September 5th, 2005. Translation from Arabic.; Fakhr, Adel. “Assassination of the Dean of the Institute for Training and Training Development in Baghdad.” Aswat al-Iraq News Service. September 22nd, 2005. Translation from Arabic.; Fakhr, Adel. “Assassination of Senior Officer in the Interior Ministry; Falling of Mortars on Joint Military Base.” Aswat al-Iraq News Service. October 17th, 2005. Translation from Arabic.; Khalil, Ashraf. “The World; 41 Iraqis, 2 US Soldiers Slain as Days Darken Before Election.” Los Angeles Times. November 25th, 2005. Pg. A1.
18 Aswat al-Iraq News Service. “Killing of Three in Car Explosion in Saydiyah.” June 18th, 2006. Translation from Arabic.; Aswat al-Iraq News Service. “Explosion of Car Bomb in Saydiyah.” June 20th, 2006. Translation from Arabic.; Partlow, Joshua. “30 at Sports Meeting in Iraq Are Abducted; Head of Nation’s Olympic Panel Seized in Latest in Series of Mass Kidnappings.” The Washington Post. July 21st, 2006. Pg. A1.; Aswat al-Iraq News Service. “Killing of a Battalion Commander from the National Police in Saydiyah.” August 10th, 2006. Translation from Arabic.
19 Iraq Operational Update Briefing, Multi-National Force-Iraq. Major General William Caldwell, Spokesman, Multi-National Force – Iraq, October 4th, 2006.
20 For an in-depth account of violence the Saydiyah neighborhood, refer to Patrick Gaughen, “Baghdad Neighborhoods Project: Saydiyah,” Backgrounder #15, Institute for the Study of War, November 21, 2007.
21 Multi-National Force-Iraq Press Release No. 20070217-15, “Patrols doubled, attacks reduced, Iraqi security forces, coalition presence providing stability,” February 17, 2007.
22 Sergeant Mark Pryor, “Airborne sets up shop in Adhamiyah,” Multi-National Force-Iraq Feature Stories, February 11, 2007.
23 Multi-National Force-Iraq Press Release No. 20070604-02, “Construction complete on ‘Safe Neighborhood’ project in Adhamiyah,” June 4, 2007.
24 Multi-National Force-Iraq Press Release No. 20070604-02, “Construction complete on ‘Safe Neighborhood’ project in Adhamiyah,” June 4, 2007; Tina Susman, “Military officials defend new barrier in Baghdad,” Los Angeles Times, April 24, 2007.
25 Multi-National Force-Iraq Press Release No. 20070604-02, “Construction complete on ‘Safe Neighborhood’ project in Adhamiyah.”
26 Major Rob Parke, 3-2 SBCT Public Affairs Officer, Multi-National Force-Iraq Press Release No. 20070322-01, “Iraqi and Coalition Soldiers begin clearing operations in the Mansour Security District,” March 22, 2007. Multi-National Division – Baghdad PAO.
27 Pentagon Press Briefing, , Col. Stephen Townsend, Commander 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, April 30, 2007
28 Institute for the Study of War Interview with Col. J.B. Burton, Commander, 2nd Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, November 14, 2007; 1st Lt. Moonerah Lao, “2-12 Cav. And the Ghazaliya Guardians are making Headway against AIF,” Dagger’s Edge, Volume 1, Issue 23, October 2, 2007; Sgt. Mike Pryor, “Residents join Guard Force to improve neighborhood security,” Multi-National Force-Iraq Feature Stories, August 27, 2007.
29 Multi-National Force-Iraq Press Release No. 20070321-11, March 21, 2007, Soldiers build Combat Outpost in Baghdad B-Roll Troops construct COP in Furat District, Multi-National Division – Baghdad PAO; Sam Dagher, “Baghdad’s Outposts Bring New Perils,” Christian Science Monitor. March 22, 2007.
30 DoD Press Briefing with General David Petraeus, Commander, Multi-National Force-Iraq, April 26, 2007; “General Petraeus Goes to Market, Chief US military commander in Iraq visits the revitalized Dora Market,” By Maj. Kirk Luedeke, 4th Light Infantry Brigade, Combat Team Public Affairs, Baghdad, April 4, 2007
31 Release No. 20070527-12, May 27, 2007, “Rashid clearing operations: Terrorist hunt moves to East Rashid,” Multi-National Division – Baghdad PAO
32 Multi-National Force-Iraq Press Release No. 20070916-11, “Clearing Continues: Dragons and Dragoons begin Operation Dragon Talon II in Rashid,” September 16, 2007.
33 Bloggers Roundtable with Col. Ricky Gibbs, Commander, 4th Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, September 28, 2007.
34 DoD Bloggers Roundtable with Col. John Riscassi, Commander, 2nd Stryker Cavalry Regiment, 25th Infantry Division, January 10, 2007.
35 DoD Bloggers Roundtable with Col. John Riscassi, Commander, 2nd Stryker Cavalry Regiment, 25th Infantry Division, January 10, 2007.