Iraqi special forces and Islamic State fighters are clashing in the eastern neighborhood of Tahrir, near Mosul, Iraq, as ISIS forces use suicide car bombs to disable Iraqi Abrams tanks and record the footage on drones.The Iraqi special forces continue to push forward with the help of U.S. airstrikes as families flee from homes to avoid becoming collateral damage in what is sure to be the biggest battle so far of the war against ISIS.https://youtu.be/rwLobT5dM2UNearly a month has gone by since the beginning of the Mosul offensive, and Iraqi Army units have only made it into a few eastern districts of the town.They face fierce resistance in the form of well-equipped, seasoned ISIS fighters deploying anti-tank rockets, small arms, mortars, sniper fire and dozens of suicide attacks, including massive car bombs.Brig. Gen. Haider Fadhil said to the Associated Press that the army is trying to evacuate civilians from the Tahririr district.“Our forces have killed dozens of Daesh fighters, and we’re advancing carefully because of the civilians, who we’re evacuating,” he said.
City headed toward humanitarian crisis
On the western edge of Mosul, Shiite militias, with permission from the state of Iraq, are advancing toward the city of Tal Afar, a Shiite-majority city.Iraqi forces also moved into the ancient city of Nimrud, an ancient Assyrian archaeological site, and destroyed heritage sites that included royal tombs. ISIS regularly destroys any evidence of ancient heritage it finds as relating to polytheism.Iraqi forces have also found wooden tanks and replica soldiers during the fight for Mosul, used to fool American and coalition aircraft into dropping bombs on fake targets.ISIS has also regularly set fire to sulfur plants and oil wells while retreating, which are extremely difficult to control and put out.The Iraqi government claims that around 100,000 troops, including Shiite militias and Kurdish Peshmerga fighters are involved in the offensive to retake Mosul.