A division-level offensive that targeted al Qaeda throughout Salah ad Din, Diyala, Ninewah, and Tamim provinces during Operation Phantom Strike.
Operation Phantom Strike
The surge of operations that American and Iraqi forces began on June 15 has dramatically improved security in Baghdad and throughout Iraq.
A division-level operation targeting al-Qaeda in Iraq and Sunni insurgents in the Euphrates River Valley southwest of Baghdad during Operation Phantom Strike.
A division-level operation that targeted Shi'a extremists east of Baghdad during Operation Phantom Strike.
A division-level operation targeted Sunni insurgents and al-Qaeda in the Arab Jabour region southeast of Baghdad during Operation Phantom Strike.
A division-level operation that targeted Sunni insurgents in the Tigris River Valley south of Baghdad during Operation Phantom Strike.
A Corps offensive to prevent al Qaeda, Sunni, and Shi’a insurgent elements from reconstituting their forces in Baghdad, its belts, or elsewhere.
The southeastern belt wraps around the capital in an arc running from Nahrawan east of Baghdad, south through Jisr Diyala down to Salman Pak, and east through Arab Jabour and Hawr Rajab to the city of Mahmudiyah. Most of the area is rural farmland, crisscrossed by irrigation canals that limit mobility and facilitate the creation of insurgent refuges.
The Baghdad belts are residential, agricultural, and industrial areas that encircle the city, and networks of roadways, rivers, and other lines of communication that lie within a twenty or thirty mile radius of Baghdad and connect the capital to the rest of Iraq. Beginning in the north, the belts include the cities of Taji, clockwise to Tarmiyah, Baqubah, Buhriz, Besmayah and Nahrwan, Salman Pak, Mahmudiyah, Sadr al-Yusufiyah, Fallujah, and Karmah.
The upper Tigris River Valley runs from the northern border of Iraq down directly into the center of Baghdad. As the Tigris winds its way south to the capital, a number of key Iraqi cities lie along the route; these are Bayji, Tikrit, Samarra, and Balad. A major highway, Main Supply Route Tampa, also runs from the Syrian border, through Mosul, and down along the Tigris River and aforementioned cities into Baghdad.