Maps: General; Physical-Cultural; Northern Iraq; tac4, tac5, tac6, tac7, tac8

ca. March 27, 2003
source: http://www.aeronautics.ru/news/news002/news081.htm
War in Iraq - preparing for battle UPDATE
March 27, 2003

The IRAQWAR.RU analytical center was created recently by a group of journalists and military experts from Russia to provide accurate and up-to-date news and analysis of the war against Iraq. The following is the English translation of the IRAQWAR.RU report based on the Russian military intelligence reports.

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March 27, 2003, 2321hrs MSK (GMT +3), Moscow (UPDATE) - Intercepted radio communications indicate that tomorrow we should expect a powerful attack by the coalition. During all day today the coalition troops were being reinforced and fully resupplied with fuel and ammunition. Additional units reserved for maintaining security along the Kuwaiti border were moved today to the front lines. The total number of additional [coalition] forces to enter Iraq numbers up to five battalions and around 800 combat vehicles.

By 1600hrs today the sand storm in Iraq has subsided allowing coalition to resume helicopter support of ground troops. At the same time the Iraqi positions were attacked by bombers and ground attack aircraft, which forced the Iraqis to cease their attacks and to resume defensive operations.

Available information suggests that the coalition command, despite of the extreme exhaustion of its troops, will attempt to use elements of the 3rd Mechanized Infantry Division to actively contain the Iraqi forces around Karabela and to reach the strategic Al-Falludja highway by moving from the west around the Razzaza lake, thus cutting off the way to Jordan. It is expected that by noon of March 29 the main coalition forces will reach this area.


During the night from March 29 to March 30 elements of the US 82nd Airborne Division aided by the Army Special Operations units may attempt to capture the Saddam Hussein Airport. Immediately following the capture of the airport the coalition plans to use it for the deployment of a brigade from the 101st Airborne Division, which will be responsible for holding the airport until the arrival of the main forces.

Commanders of the reinforced Marine brigade trying to take An-Nasiriya for the fourth day have received strict orders to suppress the Iraqi defenses and to take the town during the next day, after which to continue their advance toward Al-Kut and Al-Ammara. (MAP)  Similarly strict orders were received by the command of the brigade attacking An-Najaf. They will have to take this town, widen the staging area on the left bank of the Euphrates and push the Iraqis away from the town. By the morning of March 29 both these brigades are supposed join up southwest of Al-Kut, where they will be reinforced by the elements of the 101st Airborne Division and, after forming a southern attack line, they would blockade Baghdad from the south.


The British command has been ordered to completely take over the Fao peninsula, complete the blockade of Basra from the south and to completely take over the [Basra] airport area. After that the British are to advance toward Basra from the south along the Al-Arab river.


Based on this information to say that tomorrow we should expect heated combat would be an understatement.

(source: iraqwar.ru, 03-27-03, translated by Venik)

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