The Islamic State of Iraq and the Sham continues its lightning advance southward after seizing control of Mosul, the country’s second largest city, and the province of Ninewa and other areas of Salahaddin and Kirkuk provinces yesterday. ISIS has now captured the Salahaddin cities of Bayji, which has Iraq’s largest oil refinery, and Tikrit, the provincial capital.
ISIS units traveling in a convoy of more than 60 vehicles advanced into Bayji last night, and torched several government buildings, court houses, and police headquarters, according to ITAR-TASS and Reuters. ISIS fighters are said to have surrounded the refinery and sent a delegation to security forces who are holding out in the complex.
…After seizing Bayji, ISIS fighters moved to take control of Tikrit, the provincial capital and home town of former dictator Saddam Hussein.
…ISIS’ blitzkrieg from Mosul to Tikrit covered nearly 250 miles in the span of several days. The majority of the Iraqi security forces in the way of the ISIS either abandoned their posts and weapons and equipment, or melted away after brief skirmishes.
The scope of the operation, including the territory covered, indicates that tens of thousands of ISIS fighters participated in the recent fighting.
An offensive by a breakaway al-Qaida group in eastern Syria against Islamic rebel factions has killed more than 630 people and uprooted at least 130,000 since the end of April, an activist group said Tuesday.
Day after day we see the results of Obama’s foolish decision to back the wrong sides and run away from our commitments. Especially the commitment the families of all those men killed in Iraq and Afghanistan deserve. That commitment being that they didn’t die in vain. By withdrawing from these wars he has indeed ensured that they all died in vain and we are now much less safer then before.