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[casi] News, 02-09/04/03 (11)

News, 02-09/04/03 (11)


*, (russian intelligence notes, perhaps), 3rd April

April 3, 2003, 1301hrs MSK (GMT +4 DST), Moscow - During the last and today
early morning the coalition continued its advance toward Baghdad that it had
begun three days ago. Units of the 3rd mechanized Infantry Division, failing
to quickly capture the town of Al-Khindiya, blockaded it with a part of
their forces and moved around the town from the east to reach Al-Iskanderiya
by the morning. It is know [not? - PB] clear right now whether the US troops
were able to take the town of Al-Musaib or if they went around it as well.
The overall [coalition] progress in this direction was about 25 kilometers
during the past 24 hours.

This thrust came as a surprise to the Iraqi command. The Iraqi defense
headquarters around Karabela remained deep behind the forward lines of the
advancing US brigades. Due to the intensive aerial and artillery strikes the
Iraqi headquarters [in Karabela] lost most of its communication facilities
and has partially lost control of the troops. As the result the Iraqi
defense units in the line of the coalition attack became disorganized and
were unable to offer effective resistance. During the night fighting the
Iraqi forces in this area were pushed from their defensive positions and
withdrew toward Baghdad. The Iraqi losses were up to 100 killed and up to
300 captured. The US troops destroyed or captured up to 70 Iraqi tanks and

Currently the Iraqi command is rushing to create a new line of defense 20-30
kilometers south of Baghdad. The US losses in this attack were 3 armored
vehicles, up to 8 killed and wounded.

Late night on April 2 east of Karabela a unit from the 3rd Mechanized
Infantry Division went off-course and ran into an artillery ambush after
moving too close to the Iraqi positions. In the resulting firefight the US
forces have lost no less than 8 armored vehicles and, according to the Iraqi
reports, at least 25 US troops were killed or wounded.

In the town of Al-Kut US Marine units were able to capture a bridge across
the Tigris; but they were unable to capture the entire town and currently
fighting is continuing in the residential districts. No fewer than 3 US
soldiers were killed and up to 12 were wounded in this area during the past
24 hours. The US troops are reporting 50 killed and 120 captured Iraqi

The coalition was able to make serious progress to the south of Al-Kut.
After quickly taking the town of An-nu-Manyah the US forces have set up a
bridge across the Tigris and immediately proceeded to transfer the Marine
units to the left bank. There is a highway going from An-nu-Manyah to
Baghdad along the left bank of the Tigris. No more large populated areas are
located along the highway and the attacking forces may be able to come
within 15-20 kilometers of Baghdad as early as tonight.

The blockade of An-Najaf is continuing. Numerous attempts by the [coalition]
troops to reach the center of the town have failed after being met by Iraqi
fire. At least fire [five? - PB] [coalition] soldiers have been wounded and
one is missing.

The situation around An-Divania remains unclear. Heavy fighting in this area
is continuing since yesterday. The US field commanders have requested
artillery and aviation support on several occasions and have reported
"strong counterattacks by the enemy." It has been determined that by the
evening of April 2 the command of the US 101st Airborne Division ordered its
troops to withdraw from the town in order to create some space between its
forces and the Iraqis to allow for artillery and aerial strikes. The overall
US losses in this area during the past two days are up to 15 killed and
around 35 wounded. At the same time the US commanders are reporting
"hundreds of killed Iraqis; about 50 Iraqis - some of them wearing civilian
clothes - have been captured by the coalition. There has been a report of
another [coalition] helicopter loss in this area.

Resistance is also continuing in An-Nasiriya. The town's garrison has been
fighting for the past ten days and continues to hold its positions on the
left bank of the Euphrates. During the past day there has been a reduction
in the intensity of the Iraqi resistance. However, the US commanders at the
coalition headquarters believe that this is due to the Iraqis trying to
preserve their ammunition, which is by no means unlimited. According to one
of the US officers at the coalition headquarters elements of the [Iraqi]
11th Infantry Division remain in control on the left bank of the Euphrates.
"...Resilience of this unquestionably brave enemy is worth respect. Four
time we offered them to lay down their arms and surrender, but they continue
resisting like fanatics..." [Reverse-translated from Russian] During the
past night 1 US soldier was killed and 2 more were wounded in firefights in
this area.

Another attempt by the British to penetrate Iraqi defenses near Basra has
failed. Up to 2 battalions of the British 16th Air Assault brigade
reinforced with tanks attempted to break through the Iraqi defenses last
night northwest of the Maakil airport along the Al-Arab River.
Simultaneously from the southwest at As-Zubair another 2 marine infantry
battalions made an attempt to enter the area of Mahallat-es-Zubair, but were
met with heavy fire and withdrew after a four-hour-long battle. The Iraqis
have reported 2 destroyed British tanks, 5 APCs and no fewer than 30 British
troops killed. However, the British commanders are reporting 4 lost armored
vehicles and 5 killed. Additionally, Iraqi air defenses have shot down an
F-18 fighter-bomber of the town. The radio surveillance units reported the
loss of another plane to the north of Baghdad. It is not known whether this
plane was shot down or crashed after losing control due to a technical

As we can see, the coalition command is continuing with its "march on
Baghdad" tactics. In the course of their advance the coalition troops are
moving around the primary centers of the Iraqi defense and blockade them
leaving the rest of the work to aviation and artillery. The very near future
will show how effective this tactics really is. So far, according to
intelligence reports, more than 50,000 Iraqi troops continue fighting behind
the coalition forward lines at Karabela alone. No fewer than 5,000 Iraqis
are defending An-Najaf and An-Divania. Experts estimate that the total
number of Iraqis fighting behind coalition front approaches 90,000-100,000
regular army troops and militia.

Under such circumstances the coalition has two options: it can either try to
quickly capture Baghdad, thus leaving the Iraqi garrisons in the occupied
territories with no reason to continue with their resistance; or the
coalition troops can dig in around Baghdad and prepare for the final assault
while "cleaning up" the captured territory. The latter seems more likely as
the coalition can use the fresh troops arriving now to Kuwait for these
"clean up" operations. This will also allow these troops to gain the
valuable combat experience fighting the weakened enemy before the assault on

Analysts believe that this war will cause a review of the role of
precision-guided munitions (PGM) on the modern battlefield. Already the
results of using PGM in Iraq cast doubt on the effectiveness of PGM in
woodland areas and in cross-country terrain. Under such conditions the main
objective becomes not to hit the target with the first shot but to locate,
identify and to track the target.

Reviewing ground operations [in Iraq] analysts conclude that the desert
terrain and the resulting inability of the Iraqis to fight outside of towns
and villages provide the coalition with its main strategic advantage.
Complete air dominance allows [the coalition troops] locating and engaging
Iraqi positions and armor at maximum distance using precision-guided
munitions not available to the Iraqis, while remaining outside of the range
of the Iraqi weapons. Considering the course of this war and the tactics
used by the coalition, [Russian military] analysts find this tactics to be
far removed from the realities of modern warfare and designed exclusively
against a technologically much weaker opponent. Such tactics is unimaginable
on the European theater of combat with its woodlands and cross-country
terrain. Foreseeing the possibility of a future military standoff between
the US and North Korea the analysts are certain that the US cannot hope for
a military victory on the Korean Peninsula without the use of nuclear

*, (russian intelligence notes, perhaps), 4th April

April 4, 2003, 1507hrs MSK (GMT +4 DST), Moscow - By the morning of April 4
the situation on the US-Iraqi front showed a tendency toward stabilization.
As the forward coalition units reach Baghdad they fulfill their primary
orders outlined by the coalition command. During the four days of the
advance elements of the US 3rd Mechanized Infantry Division have bypassed
from the east the Iraqi defenses at Karabela and, without encountering any
resistance, advanced around 140 kilometers along the Karabela-Baghdad
highway and reached the Iraqi capital. However, the goals of this attack
will be fully achieved only when the US Marine brigades, now advancing along
the left bank of the Tigris, reach the southeastern outskirts of Baghdad.

All indications are that the breakthrough by the 1st Brigade of the 3rd
Mechanized Infantry Division toward the Baghdad international airport,
although a significant thrust forward, did not come as a surprise to the
Iraqi command. The US units occupying the airport area did not encounter
here any significant resistance (the airport was guarded by no more than 2-3
Iraqi companies without any heavy weapons) nor did they see any indication
that the Iraqis were even planning on defending the airport. Except for the
line of trenches along the airport's perimeter the US troops found no other
defensive structures. The airport was clear from all aircraft with the
exception of a few old fuselages and a passenger plane (possible belonging
to a Jordanian airline company), which did not have time to leave the
airport before the flight restrictions were announced by the coalition with
the beginning of the war.

Currently the coalition group of forces in the airport area number up to
4,000 troops, up to 80 tanks and about 50 artillery systems. It should be
expected that several helicopter squadrons from the 101st Airborne Division
will be deployed here in the next several hours.

According to electronic surveillance the coalition command in Qatar order
the attacking US forces to halt on at least three occasions. The command
ordered additional reconnaissance to be done in the airport area fearing
there may carefully concealed Iraqi units and extensive defenses. The
coalition command issued the final order to capture the airport only until
the coalition reconnaissance units contacted the command headquarters
directly from the airport terminal. The Iraqi forces protecting the airport
offered little resistance and after a few exchanges of fire withdrew toward
the city. Communication was lost with one of the coalition units protecting
the flanks of the advancing column. It is still being determined whether
this unit got lost or if it encountered an ambush.

Around 0800hrs the US positions [in the airport area] were attacked by the
militia forces probably from among the local population. The militia was
dispersed by tank and APC fire.

The 2nd brigade of the [3rd Mechanized Infantry] Division reached the
southern outskirts of Baghdad and is currently located near the intersection
of the Baghdad-Amman and Baghdad-Karabela highways.

The coalition claims of "completely destroying" the "Medina" ("Al Madina al
Munavvara") and the "Hammurali" Republican Guard divisions of the 2nd
Republican Guard Corps received no confirmation. No more than 80 destroyed
Iraqi armored vehicles were found along the coalition's route of advance,
which corresponds to about 20% of a single standard Iraqi Republican Guard

It has been determined that only a few forward elements of the "Hammurali"
Division participated in combat while the entire division withdrew toward
Baghdad. A single brigade of the "Medina" division was involved in combat.
The brigade was split in two groups during fighting and withdrew toward
Baghdad and toward Karabela to join the main forces of the ["Medina"]

Equally unimpressive are the numbers of the Iraqis captured by the
coalition. In four days of advance the US troops captured just over 1,000
people only half of whom, according to the reports by the US field
commander, can be considered regular troops of the Iraqi army. There are
virtually no abandoned or captured Iraqi combat vehicles. All of this
indicates that so far there has been no breakthrough for the coalition;
Iraqi troops are not demoralized and the Iraqi command is still in control
of its forces.

No significant changes occurred at other Iraqi resistance areas.

Fighting is continuing at An-Nasiriya where the US troops are still unable
to capture the part of the town on the left side of the river. Despite of
the announcement by the US command about the "near complete control of the
city", exchanges of fire are continuing and just during the last day the US
forces sustained one killed and no fewer than three wounded. The US troops
are no longer trying to storm the areas [of An-Nasiriya] held by the
elements of the Iraqi 11th Infantry Division, but instead use artillery and
aviation to methodically destroy these areas.

The coalition was also unable to take the city of An-Najaf. The designated
brigade of the 101st Airborne Division was able to take control only of the
southern outskirts of the city and now has halted its advance using
artillery and aviation to destroy the city blocks occupied by the Iraqi
defenders. Intercepted radio communications indicate at least three killed
or wounded US troops.

The Iraqis remain in control of Al-Hillah on the left side of the river.
There are continuing exchanges of fire and the city is under a constant
artillery barrage.

Nearly all fighting has stopped near Karabela, where the US forces limit
their action to blockading the city and launching artillery attacks against
Karabela's outskirts. The available US forces in this region are only
sufficient for the blockade and for now no reinforcements can be expected.
The 4th Infantry Division, currently unloading in Kuwait, will be able to
move into Iraq no sooner than April 6. Additionally, the "newest" and the
most modern division is actually only a partially-deployed force and numbers
up to 12,000 troops ­ only about half the size of the 3rd Infantry Division
already fighting in Iraq.

A tense situation remains near the town of An-Divania. According to radio
surveillance, the coalition forces were forced out of the town and thrown
back 3-5 kilometers as the result of a three-hour-long firefight. The US
field commanders reported 2 lost tanks and up to 5 lost APCs. Some 7
[coalition] soldiers were killed, 4 are missing and up to 20 were wounded.
During the past 24 hours coalition medevac helicopters flew more than ten
missions to this area. As an emergency measure a 101st Airborne Division's
battalion is currently being deployed to An-Divania. The town is under
artillery and aircraft attacks.

With much difficulty the British marine infantry is advancing near Basra.
However, despite their best efforts the British are only able to attack the
outer defensive perimeter stretching along the Shatt-al-Basra canal. By
today's morning the British were finally able to take control of the bridge
on the As-Zubair ­ Basra highway and to establish positions of the opposite
side of the river. During the fighting one British tank was hit, one APC was
destroyed and up to 10 soldiers were killed or wounded. Now the British are
facing Basra's main defense lines located 1.5 kilometers ahead of them.

The Iraqis still control a portion of the Fao peninsula. Today the Iraqi
artillery attacked the Al-Fao port. No casualty figures are currently

Radio surveillance reveals Iraqi resistance units fighting on the
territories occupied by the British. A Kuwaiti radio source reported an
attack last night resulting in a fire on one of the oil wells where the
previous fire was just recently extinguished. Coalition troops deployed in
Umm-Qasr come under regular automatic weapons fire during the night hours.
Radio surveillance indicates that yesterday coalition troops conducted a
massive operation in the town to find the resistance members.

In the north of Iraq the Kurdish units have stopped their advance after
encountering resistance by the Iraqi troops. Kurdish field commanders told
the US officers they will not go forward unless the Americans "clear the
way" for them. There is information pointing to certain financial motives
behind this attitude of the Kurdish commanders. The US Brig. Gen. Osman, who
commands the US troops in this area, told one of the Pentagon officials
during a phone conversation: "for them [the Kurds] to move forward we
literally have to throw a stack of dollars in front of them!"

At the same time the "Patriotic Union of Kurdistan" leaders are trying to
distance themselves from these [Kurdish] field commanders, calling them
"uncontrollable borderline gangs" According to them [the Kurdish leaders]
these rogue units number no more than 3000 fighters.

Information coming from Qatar indicates that the coalition command is
seriously concerned with the possibility of another sand storm. Not only
will this delay the blockade of Baghdad, but it will also leave the
coalition without its major advantage ­ the aviation, without which the
coalition will be left one on one with a numerically superior enemy.

(source:, 04-04-03, translated by Venik)

*, (russian intelligence notes, perhaps), 5th April

April 5, 2003, 1357hrs MSK (GMT +4 DST), Moscow - The situation on the
US-Iraqi front is characterized by gradual reduction of American offensive
activity. After the 3rd Mechanized Infantry Division tank forces had marched
towards Baghdad and its vanguards reached the city from south and
south-west, engineering fortification of their positions began, which
indicates the end of the current stage of the campaign as well as the loss
of offensive potential of American forces and necessity to rest and regroup.
It is supposed that during the next two days the American command will
attempt local strikes in order to improve and extend their positions on the
south and, especially, south-west approaches to Baghdad (crossing the
Baghdad ­ Samarra roadway) and begin bringing fresh forces from Kuwait.

As we supposed, during the last night Americans were moving 101st Airborne
Division troops to help the 1st Mechanized Division that captured the
airport of Baghdad yesterday morning. About 80 strike and transport
helicopters and 500 marines were deployed there.

But all the efforts to reinforce the brigade with heavy armor failed as
Iraqi started powerful artillery strikes at the transport routes and
organized mobile firing groups on the roads. After reports about losing 3
tanks and 5 APCs on the route the American command had to pause the movement
of the reinforcements by land.

Yesterday's estimates of the forces concentrated here were overstated. After
analysis of intercepted radio communications and reports of American
commanders it was specified that at the airport there were only parts of the
1st brigade troops, up to 2 enforced battalions with the help of a
self-propelled artillery division 3 thousand soldiers and officers strong,
60 tanks and about 20 guns.

Another battalion enforced with artillery crossed the Baghdad-Amman roadway
and came into position at the crossroads to the south of the airport, near

Soldiers of the 1st Mechanized Brigade spent almost all the last night in
chemical protection suits, waiting for Iraqi to use their "untraditional
weapons". Apart from that, their positions were constantly shot with
artillery and machine gun fire. The brigade commanders report that the
soldiers are ultimately dead-beat, and are constantly requesting

About 10 armored units including 4 tanks were lost in this area yesterday.
Up to 9 men were killed, about 20 wounded, at least 25 reported missing.
Moreover, the status of a patrol group that didn't arrive at the airport
remains unclear. It is supposed that it either moved away towards Khan-Azad
and took defense there or got under an ambush and was eliminated. It is now
being searched for.

The losses of Iraqi were up to 40 men killed, about 200 captured (including
the airport technical personnel), 4 guns and 3 tanks.

Currently American reconnaissance squadrons are trying to dissect the
suburban defenses with local sallies.

At the same time, marine troops are approaching the south-east borders of
Baghdad. Their vanguard units reached the outskirts of Al-Jessir and
immediately tried to capture the bridge over a feeder of the Tigris, the
Divala river, but were met with fire and stopped.

Commander of the 1st Expeditionary Marine Squadron colonel Joe Dowdy was
deposed yesterday morning. As was revealed, the colonel was deposed "Šfor
utmost hesitation and loss of the initiative during the storm of
An-NasiriyaŠ". This way the coalition command in Qatar found an excuse for
their military faults by that town. The "guilt" of the colonel was in his
refusing to enter the town for almost 3 days and trying to suppress Iraqi
resistance with artillery and aviation, trying to avoid losses. As a result,
the command additionally had to move the 15th squadron of colonel Tomas
Worldhouser there, who had to storm the ferriages for almost 6 days, with
about 20 of his soldiers killed, 130 wounded and 4 missing. The 1st
Expeditionary Squadron lost no men at An-Nasiriya, but 3 marines died, as
were reported, "by inadvertency" and about 20 soldiers got wounded.

Despite the fact that marines were able to capture one of the bridges at the
south outskirt of An-Nasiriya, the ferriage across the Euphrates is still
risky. Fights in the city are going on. The American command has to cover
the ferriage with a company of marines enforced with tanks and artillery, up
to 400 soldiers and officers strong. Every column passing across the bridge
gets shot by Iraqis from the left bank and the marines have to cover it by
setting smoke screens and delivering constant fire. A brigade group of the
101st Airborne Division is engaged in the combat but is unable to break the
Iraqi resistance. Throughout the day 3 men were wounded, 1 soldier reported

In An-Najaf, after 3 days of gunning and bombardment the 101st Airborne
Division marines were able to advance towards the center of the town and are
now fighting in the market region.

It is reported that 2 marines were killed and 4 wounded. 1 APC was destroyed
with a RPG. At the same time there arrived information that during the last
night most of the garrison (up to 3 thousand Republican Guardians of the
"Medina" Division) left the town on cars for Karbala. Only militia remained
in the town, covering the withdrawing main forces and continuing to resist.

All the attempts of American marines to advance into Al-Khindiya failed.
After 1 APC from the vanguard was knocked out and more than 20 RPG shots at
the column, the marines withdrew at their original positions. 2 soldiers
were wounded and evacuated rearwards. American intelligence believes that no
more than a battalion of Iraqis are defending the town. Their resistance
remains, despite that the town has already been under siege for 8 days.

Americans were unable to capture the left-bank part of Al-Hillah. The 82nd
Airborne Division troops are only capable of keeping a narrow "corridor" ­
across the outskirt of Al Hillah with the bridge over the Euphrates. There
is constant shooting in the town. Throughout the day in this region the
coalition lost 1 men killed and 4 wounded.

A similar "corridor" is kept by marines in the Al-Kut town. But there is
information that allows us to suppose that Americans were pushed away from
the town last night. Continuous requests of artillery and aviation support
and coordinates transmitted to the artillery HQ indicate that the combat
occurred in immediate proximity to the American positions. 4 times ambulance
helicopters flew into this region, and there hasn't still been a report from
the commander of the marine group that defends this area, which may indicate
that he hasn't yet have full information about his units.

The situation at Al-Diwaniyah, where a heavy combat has been going on for 3
days, has become a little clearer. Currently all American forces have been
pushed away from the town. Early morning an American helicopter was
attacked. Its crew died. Another helicopter was shot down and had to land to
the east from Karbala. Information about its crew is being obtained.

The overall situation in the central region of Iraq is characterized by
gradual reduction of the coalition activity and change to active defense.
But extraordinary dispersion of the ground forces, their fragmentation (the
biggest group now contains up to 12 thousand troops) create advantageous
preconditions for Iraqi counter-attacks, but the air superiority of the
coalition severely complicate such projects. If, due to weather conditions,
the coalition forces lose their air support, it may have very dramatic

At the south of Iraq the British advance on Basra is losing its strength as
well and may already stop during the next two days. Currently the British
have been unable to achieve any serious success on this direction, and
fights are only occur at the outskirts of the city.

The British command had to admit that it had underestimated the strength of
Iraqi resistance and was unable to reveal the structure and number of Basra
defenders fully and operatively. Currently in the city and the Fao
peninsula, according to the British data, about 5 thousand of regular Iraqi
military forces are defending (parts of 51st Mechanized Division of general
Khaled Khatim Saleh al-Hashimi) and up to 5-7 thousand volunteers and
militiamen. At the same time, British hopes for an armed Shia revolt have
been ruined. The Shia leaders in Iran called their Iraqi coreligionists to
fight against English and American "satanists" and "Zionists", leaving
British without their "best card" in the plan of capturing Basra. 3 men were
killed and 8 wounded yesterday.

At the North of Iraq desultory fightings between Kurdish troops "peshmerga"
and Iraqi forces are going on. The morning messages about the town Kalak
captured have not been confirmed yet, and according to the radio
surveillance data the actions only take place at the approaches of the town.
For now, Kurds are mainly busy robbing neighboring villages and transporting
the stolen goods into their basic regions. According to American special
forces which have recently been replaced here, sometimes after capturing a
village up to half of the Kurdish squadron abandon their positions. They
load stolen property into captured cars and leave for their homes to be back
next morning for new salvage.

But apart from clear marauding of "peshmerga", the coalition command has
more and more problems with keeping the decent moral level of their fighting
soldiers. Spite and irritability are growing even in British troops, which
were always "correct enough" towards the civilians on the occupied
territories. In increasing frequency British soldiers show violence and
rudeness towards civilians. At a recent consultation at the British HQ, a
representative of the military police command pointed at the fact that even
actions of arresting people suspected in underground activities occur with
unnecessary violence and publicity, and resemble rather intimidation than
special police operations. The command issued a special order regarding the
required behavior in the occupied regions, but even after it had been
published a few analogous incidents were registered.

An event that had happened 5 days before also received publicity at the
coalition HQ. During a night "cleanup" in one of suburban houses near
An-Nasiriya three marines shot a man and afterwards raped and shot his wife.
The command got information about this accident from one of its informers.
After interrogation the marines were sent to Qatar for additional

In increasing frequency commanders find things belonging to Iraqis in their
soldiers' rucksacks. The soldiers are discontent of their commanders
attempting to cease this practice, and call those items "war salvage".
Currently the command is preparing a special order regarding this issue.

(source:, 04-05-03, translated by Necroman)

*, (russian intelligence notes, perhaps), 6th April

April 6, 2003, 2000hrs MSK (GMT +4 DST), Moscow - By the morning of April
6th an uncertain and quickly changing situation has developed. Coalition
divisions are continuing to advance toward the city outskirts. The 22nd and
15th expeditionary marine squadrons are trying to break into the region of
military airport "Rashid" from south-east. Iraqis are holding the line along
the Diyala river and currently the marines cannot capture beach-heads on the
right bank.

A hard situation has formed near the international airport. The day before
yesterday the Iraqi minister of propaganda claimed that the coalition forces
in this region would have been eliminated by this morning, and the Iraqi
command ordered to storm the airport. At 10am it was attacked by 3
Republican Guards battalions enforced with militia troops. Americans
requested artillery and aviation support. The battle lasted for almost 6
hours. After several unsuccessful attacks Iraqis managed to drive Americans
back from the second runway to the airport building. Currently the coalition
forces control the building itself and the new runway bordering to it.
During the day the foes had to increase their strengths and deploy
reinforcements. By the evening up to 2 regular Iraqi brigades and 2 thousand
militiamen were fighting for the airport. Americans had to use all available
forces of the 3rd Mechanized Division and 101st Airborne Division to repulse
the attacks. Only assault aircraft and battle helicopters made more than 300
operation flights to this region.

During the fight Iraqis lost up to 20 tanks, 10 APC, about 200 men killed
and up to 300 wounded. The American losses were up to 30 men killed, about
50 wounded, at least 4 tanks, 4 APC and 1 helicopter. But it is impossible
to obtain the exact data yet. By this hour there have been more than 20
flights for evacuation of killed and wounded coalition soldiers and the
command have requested ambulance aviation again.

The combat was so intense that commander of the 3rd Mechanized Division
general-major Bufford Blunt had to issue an order to organize a false
strike. Around 8am from Khan-Azad road junction an attack was organized in
order to demonstrate tank vanguards of a large subdivision advancing toward
Al-Daura from south. The group was able to reach the outskirts of the town
near the Avajridge village. After entering the village the group was met by
Republican Guards. In direct combat the group lost 2 tanks, 3 APC, 3 men
killed, up to 10 wounded and, after two hours of fighting, withdrew to the
main forces. Iraqis lost 4 tanks, 2 APC and up to 30 men killed.

By the evening the foes reduced their activity and were regrouping during
the last night. Americans are rapidly fortifying their defense positions and
deploying reinforcements to the airport region, increasing their forces at
Khan-Azad and Abu-Harraib. Iraqis are moving anti-armor divisions closer to
the city outskirts.

Despite the exchange of strikes there are no reasons to expect any serious
attempts to capture the city in the nearest future. By numerical strength
the coalition troops that have reached the city borders do not meet even the
minimal requirements for storming and heavy urban fights. Coalition forces
by Baghdad number up to 18-20 thousand men and can be enforced with no more
than 3-5 thousand men while the minimal force necessary to capture a city
like Baghdad equals from 80 to 100 thousand soldiers.

According to weather forecasts, in the coming day the weather may abruptly
change to the worse. The wind is expected to intensify, visibility may
reduce to 200-300 m.

All the claims made by aviation commander of the coalition, general Michael
Mosley, about "ŠIraqi army, as an organized structure consisting of large
units, exists no longerŠ" are contrary to fact and, according to analytics,
are probably connected with severe pressure put on the military command by
American financial groups that desperately needed good news from the
US-Iraqi front by the end of the financial week. In fact, the Republican
Guards defending Baghdad have not lost even 5% of their numerical strength
and military equipment. Most of those losses were due to bombardments and
not land combats. The total losses of Iraqi army since the beginning of the
war have not exceeded 5-8% of their defensive potential. This means the main
battles are still to be seen.

The situation in other sectors of the US-Iraqi front will be summarized
closer to this evening.

(source:, 04-06-03, translated by Necroman)

*, (russian intelligence notes, perhaps), 6th April (2)

April 6, 2003, 2000hrs MSK (GMT +4 DST), Moscow UPDATE - Around Baghdad
skirmishes between coalition forces and Iraqi divisions are going on. As we
said before, during the next two days the coalition troops will extend the
zone of blockade to the west and north-west using local strikes. Currently a
part of the 1st brigade of the 3rd Mechanized Division is outflanking the
city from Abu-Harraib, trying to reach the south outskirts and seize a
strategic bridge across the Tigris at the north of the Tunis area

Fire has not stopped near the Airport, both sides are using artillery.
According to the most recent data the rush of the coalition forces toward to
the southern borders of Baghdad, though expected by the Iraqi command, was
tactically surprise. Hidden in the interiors of the city, parts of the Iraqi
army were unable to leave their covered positions, advance and face the
enemy. There arouse confusion that led to disorganization of the Iraqi
squadrons that engaged their rivals "on the move", without proper
reconnaissance and concentration of forces. According to specified
information in different conflicts and during the assault of the airport up
to 400 Iraqi soldiers were killed, 25 tanks and 12 guns were lost.

But the coalition command also faced serious problems. Powerful Iraqi
attacks aimed at the airport immobilized most of the force breaking towards
Baghdad and it turned out necessary to bring reinforcements from other
sectors of the front in order to succeed. In particular, up to 2 battalions
of the 101st Airborne Division located by An-Nasiriya and An-Najaf and at
least 1 battalion of the 82nd Division were moved there. Americans tolls at
the south and south-east of Baghdad for the last 24 hours amount to: up to
30 men killed and at least 80 wounded, 15 soldiers are known to be missing.
The Americans lost at least 8 tanks and 5 APC.

Marine squadrons are still incapable of breaking down defenses by the Diyala
river. Currently the vanguards are trying to outflank the city from east and
seize the bridge in the New Baghdad region.

There are not enough coalition forces to block such a city, and the troops
blocking An Nasiriya, An-Najaf, Al-Kut and Al-Diwaniya were given
categorical orders to break down the Iraqi resistance in the next 3 days,
take control of those areas and advance toward Baghdad to join the blockade.

To organize offensive against Karbala the blocking troops were enforced with
one expeditionary marine squadron, and another storm started this morning.
There is no information about casualties from this region yet.

Analogous tasks were set before the British command at the south of Iraq
near Basra.

For the past 2 days the British have tried to overcome Iraqi defenses from
An-Zubair and the Manavi regions 3 times, but they still cannot break down
the resistance. This morning an armored column was able to come up to a
strategic cross-road near Akhavat-Rezan, but got under heavy fire and had to

Yesterday and during this morning the British lost at least 3 armored units,
2 men killed and 6 wounded.

The coalition command and the foreign policy departments of Russia and USA
are now making every effort to close all the information related to the
Russian embassy getting fired near Baghdad.

Sources claim that the embassy ceased its activities in many respects
because of the danger of an air strike on the embassy. The American command
was utterly irritated by the presence of the Russian embassy in Baghdad and
believed that some technical intelligence equipment was deployed there that
provided the Iraqis with information. Moreover, some officers in the
coalition HQ in Qatar openly claimed that it was on the territory of the
Russian embassy that the "jammers" hampering the high-precision weapons
around Baghdad were operated.

Yesterday morning the Secretary of State Colin Powell demanded of immediate
evacuation of the embassy from the Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs Igor
Ivanov. Yesterday evening the Russian minister informed the Americans that
on the 6th of April the embassy column would be leaving Baghdad heading for
the Syrian border. This gave rise to dissatisfaction among the State
Department officials who suggested that the column should move to Jordan.

The coalition special operations HQ were sure that the embassy column would
contain secret devices taken from military equipment captured by Iraqis. In
this connection one cannot shut out the possibility of "revenge" from the
coalition command.

Moreover, experts claim that the purpose of this armed assault could be to
damage a few cars where the Russians would have to leave some of the
salvage. This is also indicated by the fact that neither the ambassador
himself nor journalists in the column were among the injured. In this case
we can expect that this action was committed by coalition special forces and
the column was shot using Russian-made weapons to conceal the origin of the
attackers to blame the Iraqis afterwards.

According to the most recent data the column got ambushed almost 30 km to
the west from the city on the territory occupied by the coalition, but
moving fast it escaped from fire and made a few more kilometers where it was
blocked by military jeeps. On attempting to establish contact with their
crews it received fire again, then the jeeps vanished.

Today at 5pm a phone conversation between president of Russia Vladimir Putin
and president of the USA George W. Bush took place. Before this
conversation, his assistant for National Security Affairs Condoleezza Rice,
who came into Moscow today, had consulted Bush. At this time Rice is meeting
Igor Ivanov, the head of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The
details of this meeting are unknown so far, but we can suppose that very
soon some "unknown squadrons" will be made responsible for the incident and
the situation will be dampened to the maximum.

Analysts reckon that the situation with the nuclear submarine "Kursk", when
a whole series of private contacts between top Russian officials and
American representatives brought more questions than answers, is about to
occur again to some extent.

(source:, 04-06-03, translated by Necroman)

*, (russian intelligence notes, perhaps), 7th April (a)

April 7, 2003, 1914hrs MSK (GMT +4 DST), Moscow - The situation on the
US-Iraqi front during the morning-night on April 7th was characterized by
extreme fierceness of combat. During the night-morning the coalition units
continued to encircle the city from west and east. The 2nd brigade of the
3rd Mechanized Division, as was revealed before, after a five hour march
reached the northern approaches of Baghdad and occupied the region bordering
to the strategic bridge Salah-Khasan, but was unable to seize the bridge
itself because of a heavy missile and artillery barrage. Up to 10 men were
killed, at least 20 wounded. In the morning the brigade lost its
communication center destroyed by a tactical Iraqi missile.

>From south-east the American marine units that had repeatedly tried to seize
a strategic bridge across the Diyala, as we assumed before, during the night
advanced to the eastern suburbs of the New Baghdad and by the morning tried
to take over bridges near the "Rashid" airport. In this violent conflict the
bridges were destroyed by the Iraqi artillery and the marines sustained
losses. According to intercepted radio communications up to 5 marines were
killed, at least 12 wounded. 3 APC and 1 tank were destroyed.

Last night on the right bank of the Tigris in the Al-Mansur region American
commandos numbering up to 200 men landed in a block of government buildings.
Apart from that, fighting squadrons landed on two government residences in
this region. The goal of the operation was to capture top officials of
Saddam Hussein's administration. Almost immediately the airdrop was detected
and engaged. In order to unblock the commandos at 7am an enforced tank
battalion from the 1st brigade of the 3rd Mechanized Division entered the
city and after a two-hour fight was able to break to the Haifa street along
the Kadissiya roadway and partly reached the bank of the Tigris. This
movement turned out unexpected by the Iraqis and met no resistance at first.
But in the region of the government quay the American forces confronted with
organized Iraqi defenses. After 3 hours of battle the commandos got to the
American positions and the whole column fell back from the city.

The American losses total up to 10 men killed, 20 wounded and 10 missing. Up
to 3 tanks and 3 APC were destroyed. The commandos only examined a few
government buildings in a hurry. All of them were found empty and no
captives were taken. The tolls of the Iraqi side during the day were up to
150 men killed and about 200 wounded. They lost up to 5 tanks and 8 guns.

By the afternoon Iraqi actions became more confident. There is information
that one of yesterday's air strikes severely damaged one of their
communication and control centers and currently the Iraqi command has to
control their units using VHF-stations and envoys which delays battle-orders
and commands.

Today the American command had to admit that the fighting potential of
Baghdad defenders is "fairly high" and the rivals show no sign of

Full update will be published tonight.

(source:, 04-07-03, translated by Necroman)

*, (russian intelligence notes, perhaps), 7th April (b)

April 7, 2003, 2400hrs MSK (GMT +4 DST), Moscow (UPDATE) - By this evening
the situation on the US-Iraqi front in the environs of Baghdad has become
less tense. All the American units have returned to their initial positions
corresponding to the morning of April 7th. Currently artillery and aviation
occasionally open fire at the city. The details of today's raid of the 1st
tank brigade of the 3rd Mechanized Division column to the central district
of Baghdad are now available. Radio surveillance data allow us to contend
that it was a joint action of the American Special Forces and the army
command. Having penetrated into Baghdad a few days before the commandos
after reconnaissance concentrated near several government buildings and got
ready for a storm.

At the same time from the Khan-Azad region towards Al-Rashid along the
Kadissiya roadway advanced a mechanized unit of the 3rd Division consisting
of one tank battalion and one motorized infantry battalion (up to 70 tanks
and 60 armored personnel carriers). No sooner had the column reached the
outskirts of the city, at the rear of the Iraqis the commandos started to
storm the target objects ­ two government buildings and the building of the
Ministry of Information, the waiting room of the Security Service and the
building of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Iraq. The main objective was
to find an entrance to the government underground shelter system and capture
high-ranking Iraqi officials. Without combat the commandos were able to
seize the Al-Shihud palace and the Republican palace, which were guarded by
small patrols only. The palaces turned out empty, and their examination did
not reveal any underground shelters. Soon after the palaces had been
captured a column of the 1st brigade moved into this region and stood guard

But when attempting to storm the government offices the commandos were
sighted, blocked and engaged by the guardians. In order to help the
commandos a mixed battalion group that had managed to break to the quay of
the Tigris moved forward but was stopped by an anti tank artillery barrage
and got ambushed by RPG soldiers. During that almost two-hour battle the
Americans lost up to 5 APC and 2 tanks. At least 8 solders were killed and
more than 20 wounded. By 3pm the remains of the commando assault groups
forced their way to the American positions and at 15:30 their common
withdrawal began. At 5pm the American troops left the city.

The exact casualties of the American Special Forces remain unclear.
According to communications between American commanders the status of least
15 men is unknown. Whether they are dead, captured or hiding in the city is
still obscure.

It was reported that the commandos captured a high officer but during the
rush he was killed and left in the city.

The American command criticized the raid. General Tommy Franks who came to
the airport region called the level of the casualties during this local
operation "unacceptable" and the results "paltry". Yet it was noted that the
Iraqi command reacted on bringing the forces into Baghdad "with an
inexplicable delay" and the actions of the counter-attacking Iraqi units
"uncoordinated". American commanders believe that it happened due to "severe
malfunction of the whole communication and control system". It is still
unclear what damaged Iraqi communications.

According to some data most of the high command left the city after it had
been blocked and moved to a reserve command center located in the northern
regions of Iraq while the local command remaining in the city has not taken
control over the situation yet.

Some officers in the coalition HQ presume that if this is the case then even
storming Baghdad will not finish this war and a "campaign to the north",
where quite an effective and large group of Iraqi troops remains, might be

During this day the British forces of the 7th armored brigade and the 3rd
marine brigade have been assaulting Basra. After a nine-hour battle the
British have managed to occupy the districts of the "New Basra" Subhay and
Ahavat-Rezan and advanced into the "Old Basra" towards the Presidential
residence, but still cannot take control of the old districts. The Al Ashar
and Akina regions as well as a part of the Al-Arab quay remain in Iraqi
hands and the British command admits that it will be very difficult to
occupy them since armored units cannot move down narrow streets.

The total losses of the British in this region amount to at least 7 killed
and 15 wounded. A tank and 2 APC were destroyed. The Iraqis lost up to 100
men killed, about 50 captured, 3 tanks and 6 guns. The British estimate the
number of defenders in the old districts to be 500 Iraqi militiamen and
soldiers of the 51st Infantry Division supported by at least 10 tanks, 12
guns and a lot of portable antitank launchers.

This morning the coalition troops captured Karbala. According to its
citizens most of the Iraqi units that were defendeding the town during the
evening-night of April 6th left it and moved north. Just a few home guard
units remaining in the town ceased their resistance and mixed with the local
population. A captured RG officer said that the order to leave the town was
received in the morning of April 6th personally from Saddam Hussein after
the general HQ obtained information about the American artillery barrage
that resulted in a few shells dropped near one of the main Moslem sacred
places, the grave of Hussein ibn-Ali. So as not to insult the Shia
population of Karbala by the possible destruction of the sacred place the
order to leave the town was issued. Currently the Americans are trying to
reveal and "clean off" "Saddam's agents".

Reports about taking over the Al-Khindiya town after the ten-day storm are
also coming. The town of 30 thousand people was in turn assaulted by an
Expeditionary Marine unit and later a brigade of the 101st Airborne
Division. After occupation of the town and interrogation of captives it was
discovered that the whole garrison of Al-Khindiya consisted of 3 RG
companies and 1 militia squadron, about 500 soldiers altogether. More than
200 defenders of the town were killed, about 100 captured. In battles of
Al-Khindiya the Americans lost up to 15 men killed, at least 40 wounded. 10
armored vehicles were destroyed. By evidence of a "Red Crescent"
representative who came there yesterday, even seriously wounded soldiers
incapable of walking were taken to the prisoner-of-war camp. Arrests of
citizens suspected in resistance are now taking place in the town.

An-Nasiriya, An-Najaf, Al-Kut, Ad-Divaniya and some more small towns on the
south of Iraq remain under Iraqis' control. Only yesterday the Americans
lost up to 5 armored vehicles, at least 3 men killed and 10 wounded. Today
near An-Nasiriya a rear American column got ambushed. The casualties are
unknown so far, but judging from the immediate takeoff of aviation cover and
helicopters with an airborne unblocking group the battle is not in favor of
the column.

All the information the Russian side has about the fire opened at the
Russian embassy column indicate that shooting at the diplomats and
journalists was not an accidental event but rather a planned action of
frightening and retribution.

This version is also supposed by several today's attempts of Americans to
stop the column on its route and carefully examine the diplomats' cars and
accompanied baggage. The Russian Foreign Ministry and the high-ranking
officials keep silent. On the meeting of the President of Russia Vladimir
Putin and the National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice they agreed "to
forget about this regrettable indicent" and "prevent any impact on the
Russian-American partnership"Š

(source:, 04-07-03, translated by Necroman)

*, (russian intelligence notes, perhaps), 8th April

April 8, 2003, 1613hrs MSK (GMT +4 DST), Moscow - This morning battles in
Baghdad resumed. The US marine units at 7am managed to break to the right
bank of the Diyala near Al-Jassir, and at 8am advanced to the left bank of
the Tigris in the Bessaf district, on the junction of streets Abu-Nuvas and
Al-Rashid. Currently up to one battalion have got over the bridges opposite
to the Ministry of Information and TV center and are now assaulting those

According to specified data, after yesterday's raid into Baghdad up to two
companies of Americans fortified in the Al-Shihud palace, which was attacked
by Republican Guard troops this morning. The coming reports indicate that
the American command is trying to take control of the administrative center
of Baghdad whereupon proclaim to have practically captured the city.

>From the northern district As-Sulaija toward the city center battalions of
the 3rd Mechanized Division are moving. As early as by 5pm they can reach
the Abbasid Palace and split Baghdad along the Tigris. The right-bank part
of the city is also under threat of a split along the Mansur roadway line.

Information on casualties is quite desultory so far. By now, only the loss
of 2 marines during the storm of the bridge across the Diyala and 1 tank
destroyed by the Ministry of Information has been verified.

The battle of Baghdad has broken into multiple skirmishes and therefore the
casualties sustained by both sides will only be specified along toward

According to reports by American commanders the resistance of the Iraqis
does not make an impression of them acting under a united organized command
and looks more like operations of autonomous groups.

Moreover, the Americans note very limited use of Iraqi tanks and artillery.
There are almost no serious artificial obstacles and strong points prepared
for a long defense. This does not give grounds to consider Baghdad prepared
for a long siege. And, under such level of resistance the battles for
Baghdad may end in 5-7 days.

But in spite of certain success, the US forces are still unable to break the
Iraqi opposition. Even units fortified at the outskirts are being attacked
and are constantly receiving fire.

It is still unknown where the top political and military Iraqi leaders are.
Out of the high ranked officials only the Minister of Information Mohammad
Saed Sahaf is certainly present in the city.

According to arriving information, at about 11am an American helicopter was
shot down over the southern suburb of Baghdad.

The US command has confirmed their loss of a heavy attack plane A-10 at

This morning in Basra marine units began to "clean up" the old city blocks
where remains of the Iraqi garrison held the line yesterday. Currently,
according to the first reports, the advancing marines do not face any
resistance and there is a high probability of the Iraqis having abandoned
their positions and left the city or mixed with Basra citizens when darkness

(source:, 04-08-03, translated by Necroman)

Information Clearing House, 8th April

Events of the last 2 days have made further work of Ramzaj group in its
current format impossible

With the embassy personnel and journalists having left Iraq and most of
Iraqi information services evacuated from Baghdad, analysis of the situation
in Baghdad and Iraq as a whole becomes ineffective

The quickly changing course of street fights leaves any informational
updates far behind. Direct TV broadcasts are far more evident than any

At the same time, we do not have the right to reveal classified, "top
secret" information

Apart from that, our actions meet increasing opposition from the official
quarts and in fact are turning into confrontation the outcome of which is
not difficult to forecast

Therefore we have to discontinue our work and thank everybody for taking
part in the project

In conclusion we would like to say: All the "updates" came out from a
compact group formed a few years ago in the framework of a special service.
The group used to work for the government for a long time but all its
members have left the service and now act as an independent analytical group
that has kept some capabilities. This gives an answer to the most common
question ­ about the sources of our information

We participated in the ongoing events on a "non-profit" basis and had no
object other than to stand the US-British informational blockade of the war
in Iraq

Our updates were not genuine materials from any of Russian or other special
services, but rather an "intellectual product" of the group itself, product
of its operative, informational and analytical abilities. But compiling the
updates we used materials available from our friends from special
information structures. The very form "operativnaya informatsiya" never
claimed to be "military information updates" but served as additional data
for self dependent analysis

The main goal of the project was to present intelligible military analytics
on the war in Iraq, which is currently missing, to the informational space.
We had both success and obvious fails along the way

We are grateful to the and administration that took
the risk and burden of working with us and we understand how many problems
they have to endure because of that

With all responsibility we state that no messages, letters, appeals and
other materials, apart from the daily "updates" on and were made by Ramzaj group and any other statement in our name
is nothing but mystification

The author with the nickname "Kondor" is the only authorized source of
information about the group and its "official contact person". In cases of
uncertainty or "nickname cloning" authentication is possible using his
personal photo that supplements one of images published on and
comes as its logical continuation

With unfailing respect to all of you, Ramzaj

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