Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. Military Space News .

Iraqi Kurds look to sky for breakthrough against IS
by Staff Writers
Near Jalawla, Iraq (AFP) Oct 01, 2014

Baghdad car bombs kill 13: police
Baghdad (AFP) Sept 30, 2014 - Three car bombs blasts killed at least 13 people and wounded 41 in Shiite-dominated neighbourhoods of the Iraqi capital Baghdad Tuesday, police and hospital sources said.

Twin car bombs rocked the Horreyya district in northwest Baghdad late Tuesday, killing at least 11 and wounding 32, a police colonel said. A hospital official confirmed the toll.

Another car bomb in Zafaraniya, in southeast Baghdad, killed two and wounded nine others, the same sources said.

Australian military jets to support Iraq strikes: PM
Sydney (AFP) Oct 01, 2014 - Australian military jets are to join in the US-led air war against the Islamic State group in Iraq, conducting refuelling and support missions, Prime Minister Tony Abbott said Wednesday.

Australia deployed some 600 troops and several aircraft to the United Arab Emirates in mid-September as it geared up to join the US-led international coalition.

"We have not yet made a final decision to commit our forces to combat but Australian aircraft from today will start flying over Iraq in support of allied operations," Abbott told parliament.

"Ours are support operations, not strike missions. Australian air strikes await final clearances from the Iraqi government and a further decision by our own."

The RAAF's E-7A Wedgetail Airborne Early Warning and Control aircraft and a refuelling aircraft "will operate over Iraq in support of US and other coalition aircraft", Abbott added.

The Prime Minister said the Islamic State group was an "apocalyptic death cult" that had "declared war on the world and it must be resisted at home and abroad".

"Because ISIL (Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant) has global ambitions, our international security and our national security are indivisible," Abbott said.

"Our objective is to support governments that neither commit genocide against their own people nor permit terrorism against ours."

Opposition Labor leader Bill Shorten said his party supported the Australian military's involvement in Iraq, but not the deployment of combat units on the ground.

Shorten added that any military involvement "should be confined to Iraq".

Abbott said previously that the UAE deployment was focused on Iraq and not Syria, adding that Australia does not recognise the Syrian government.

He noted at a press conference earlier Wednesday that "the legalities of operating in Syria are quite different from the legalities of operating in Iraq at the request of the Iraqi government".

"ISIL is... the same whether it's in Syria or Iraq, but the legalities are different and legalities matter to a country such as Australia."

US warplanes have been launching multiple strikes against IS jihadists in both Syria and Iraq, while Britain carried out its first air raids against the IS group in Iraq on Tuesday.

Australia has already joined the US in an international effort to transport weapons to Kurdish forces fighting IS extremists in northern Iraq. And it has conducted humanitarian air drops in besieged Iraqi towns.

Abbott has repeatedly said that the violence in Iraq was "reaching out" to Australia, and has warned that some 60 citizens are already fighting alongside jihadists in the conflict overseas.

A truck lies stranded on its side in a no man's land between Kurdish fighters and jihadists ensconced behind minefields, a stalemate the Kurds hope US-led air strikes can break.

Crouched behind a wall of sandbags with a finger on the trigger, an Iraqi Kurdish peshmerga fighter has the truck in his sights, and the strategic town of Jalawla behind it.

The Islamic State (IS) jihadists seized Jalawla, at the gateway to Iraqi Kurdistan and on the road to Baghdad, on August 11.

The peshmerga fighters have since failed to make headway in efforts to recapture it.

A trench dug in the ochre earth leads to a forward Kurdish outpost, where some 30 peshmerga in uniforms ranging from camouflage to traditional baggy trousers and large belt are sheltered behind bottle-green sandbags.

"Beware of IS snipers," one of them warns.

Under a scorching sun, a call to prayer sounds from a mosque inside Jalawla. Behind the sandbags, the attitude ranges from vigilance to boredom.

The buffer zone is riddled with mines laid by the jihadists, deterring any Kurdish advance, says Colonel Ali Abdullah.

The Jalawla front is also of strategic importance for its proximity to Iran, with the border a mere 20 kilometres (12 miles) to the east.

"If we don't retake Jalawla, the whole region will be in danger, right up to the Iranian border," says General Jafar Sheikh Mustapha, a military and political chief of the Kurdistan Democratic Party of regional president Massud Barzani.

Two months ago, the IS militants advanced to an intersection of roads leading to Baghdad and the autonomous Kurdistan region of northern Iraq.

But by the end of August, the Kurds had forced the jihadists to pull back to Jalawla, 130 kilometres from Baghdad, and the frontline has been frozen ever since.

The retreating IS fighters blew up a bridge, reducing it to a mass of concrete and metal rods. The Kurds built a crossing with boulders and rocks for their 4x4 vehicles.

Entrenched behind the minefield, the jihadists have posted snipers to keep out any sappers.

The only way to break the deadlock is for the US-led coalition to send in its warplanes. "They must bomb here," insists Colonel Abdullah.

- 'Not stronger than Saddam' -

Under fire, they open up with two heavy machineguns, newly delivered by France as part of the coalition's efforts to back up its air campaign with boots on the ground provided by local forces.

Some of the peshmerga are battle-hardened fighters, while others are new to the front, like 20-year-old Sakar who broke off his biology studies to sign up.

A Russian assault rifle slung over his shoulder and four magazines in the pockets of his bullet-proof vest, Sakar says he received no formal training but in any case knows how to use guns.

A few kilometres away, another Kurdish post dominates the valley but is penned in on three sides by IS-held territory.

"That's an IS car," says one fighter, pointing to a speeding vehicle which leaves behind a trail of dust.

Between exchanges of gunfire, the Kurds are waiting for the coalition to soften up the IS position with air strikes. But the peshmerga, whose name translates as "those who confront death" and with their renown for prowess in battle, are determined to hold on.

"I have fought all my life," says an ageing peshmerga with a heavily creased face. "I fought against (toppled dictator) Saddam Hussein and the IS is not stronger than Saddam."


Related Links
Iraq: The first technology war of the 21st century

Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

Baghdad steps up propaganda fightback with jihadist TV satire
Baghdad (AFP) Sept 29, 2014
As Iraqi forces struggle to pin back the Islamic State group on the ground, Baghdad is taking its war against the jihadists to the airwaves with a television comedy series. The usually elusive Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi features prominently in the show, whose promoters argue that ridiculing the jihadist supremo can help dent his aura of almost supernatural villainy. The fear factor - fed by o ... read more

Raytheon producing backup components for missile defense radar

Raytheon providing ongoing support for Patriot air defense system

Israel, US test upgraded Arrow 2 missile interceptor

INFORMS Study on Iron Dome Asks: What Was its Impact?

UAE asks U.S. for $900M rocket artillery deal

U.S. Navy eyes Norwegian missile

Raytheon announces full-rate production of Talon rocket

China shows off new missile test on primetime television

USMC Orders RQ-12 Wasp AE UAVs

AeroVironment's Wasp microdrone being supplied to Marine Corps

Fury glide bomb dropped from Shadow UAS

IBC Advanced Alloys Delivers First UAS Components for Analysis

'Space bubbles' may have aided enemy in fatal Afghan battle

Space control Airmen ensure constant communication

Russian Aerospace Defense Forces Again Dismiss Satellite Explosion Rumors

Harris Corporation supplying radios to Air Force Special Operations Command

Former Exelis business unit makes debut as independent company

UAE asks U.S. for $2.5B MRAP deal

Millog expands maintenance work for Finnish military

Seeing Through the Fog (and Dust and Snow) of War

German push onto world stage hit by defence failures

Poland, Pakistan, Lebanon seek U.S. military hardware

Airbus to restructure defence division, sell off units

Netherlands ups defence spending in wake of downed MH17

'CY' Leung: Hong Kong's embattled leader

Modi makes White House debut

Polish weekend warriors up in arms over Russian threat

Philippines, US launch joint exercises near China-claimed waters

World's smallest reference material is big plus for nanotechnology

Smallest possible diamonds form ultra-thin nanothreads

Engineers show light can play seesaw at the nanoscale

Nanoribbon film keeps glass ice-free

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement All images and articles appearing on Space Media Network have been edited or digitally altered in some way. Any requests to remove copyright material will be acted upon in a timely and appropriate manner. Any attempt to extort money from Space Media Network will be ignored and reported to Australian Law Enforcement Agencies as a potential case of financial fraud involving the use of a telephonic carriage device or postal service.