The latest information about the situation in Baghdad
Battles in Baghdad were resumed in the morning again. By seven o’clock in the morning, units of the US Marine Corps managed to force their way to the right bank of the Diyala river in the area of al-Jasir. By eight o’clock in the morning, the troops stepped on the left bank of the Tigris river in the Bessafa area, where streets Abu-Nuvas and Al-Rashid cross. A battalion of US marines crossed bridges opposite the Iraqi Information Ministry and television center buildings. Coalition military men storm those objects at the moment.
According to the specified information, about two companies of the US forces fortified a position at the palace of Al-Shihud, which Iraqi Republican Guards attacked in the morning today. The American command reportedly tries to establish the control over the administrative center of Baghdad and to pronounce Baghdad’s defeat after that.
Battalions of the third division approach the center from the north (the area of as-Sulayha). It is not ruled out that they can reach out the Abbasid Palace, which will split Baghdad into two along the Tigris river.
For the time being, the information about losses is rather vague. It has been confirmed so far that two US marines were killed during the storm of the bridge across the Diyala river and one tank was put out of action near the building of the Iraqi Information Ministry. There were numerous clashes in the fight for Baghdad, which did not allow to have the precise information regarding the losses.
American commanders say that the resistance of the Iraqi army gives them an impression that there is no single command to guide Iraqi soldiers. US military officials are drawn to believe that they act as separate armed groups without a central command. In addition to that, it was said that Iraqi troops did not use their tanks and artillery much. There are no serious obstacles or base stations in the city that would be prepared for a long defense. This does not give a reason to believe that Baghdad is prepared for a long siege, though. Spokespeople for the American command think that fights for Baghdad will most likely be over within five or seven days.
Despite certain amount of success, American troops have not managed to break the Iraqi army’s resistance yet. Even those troops, which fortified their positions on the outskirts of the city, are constantly subjected to attacks.
It is still not clear, where the supreme political and military leadership of Iraq stays at the moment. Information Minister Mohammad Said al-Sahhaf is the only Iraqi high-ranking official, who still stays in Baghdad currently.
It has been recently reported that an American helicopter was downed in the south of Baghdad at 11 o’clock in the morning today. The American command confirmed the loss of an A-10 battle plane in Baghdad.
In the morning, US marines started cleansing procedures in Basra, where parts of the Iraqi garrison remained for further defense. Iraqi soldiers have not yet showed any resistance to American marines. It is not ruled out that Iraqi servicemen left their positions or blended up with local residents of those quarters.
This is the publication of daily reports about the war in Iraq. The article was originally prepared by Ramzaj. Ramzaj is the nickname of an anonymous person, who publishes daily war reports on the Russian Internet. Most likely, it is an agent (or a group of agents) of the Russian Central Intelligence Department or of the Russian General Headquarters. It is worth mentioning that Ramzaj’s information about possible action of the coalition forces in Iraq became real on several occasions. Ramzaj’s war reports are now translated into English; Russian television channels refer to this person too.
Translated by Dmitry Sudakov
The remarks from the Pope came as "a very strong step towards degradation," "given the rather massive nature of homosexuality" among the Catholic clergy.