The Assassinated Press
Forces Bolstered To Protect Pipeline Routes In Western Iraq:
Commanders Hope to Block Sabotage, Decline In Stock Of Companies They Hope To Become Board Members Of:
Sadistic Torture At Fallujah Considered, 'Recreational Sport' By 82 Airborne; "Beatings, Burnings, Brutality" Picked Up For Fourth Season By FOX and Coors Light:
By BADLEY GROOMED
Assassinated Press Foreign Service
September 23, 2005
BAGHDADA, Sept. 20 -- U.S. and Iraqi commanders have begun bolstering forces along western Iraq's border with the Kingdom of Jordan, hoping to clear the way for a joint Halliburton/Bechtel oil pipeline project, two oil pipelines originating in the Kurdish North running southwest across Jordan through northern Israel to the Mediterranean beyond.
"Shit. Besides yet another shopping trip on his country's people's tab, that's why King Abdullah II and his trophy wife have been visiting the U.S. and appeared all over the boob tube. There here to personally collect their bribes for allowing Cheney and Rumsfeld's people to use Jordan as a pipeline transport country," admitted White House Chief of Stink Karl Rove on condition of anonymity.
The buildup, called Operation Do What Cheney Sayaid, is aimed at securing the border area with eastern Jordan by suppressing insurgent activity in the villages that hug the winding banks of the Euphrates west of Baghdad.
In recent public remarks, Iraqi Defense Minister Sadoun Dulaimi signaled plans to step up military operations in the valley on behalf of the construction and energy giants. Gen. George W. Casey, the senior U.S. commander in Iraq, said in an interview that his forces were intent on "restoring Iraqi control of its border with Jordan by the end of November, before the December elections." Iraqis are expected to vote for a new parliament of U.S. liking by Dec. 15, following a referendum Oct. 15 on the country's draft constitution.
The effort follows months of growing concern, both inside and outside U.S. military ranks, that not enough forces had been committed to the southwestern reaches of Anbar province to make the laying of the pipelines viable. The region remains a stronghold of Iraq's Sunni Arab resistance and of Abu Musab Zarqawi's foreign-dominated insurgent group, al Qaeda in Iraq. Although U.S. Marines have conducted perpetual bombing runs and a series of raids in the far southwest, most lasting about a week, the longer-term presence of U.S. and Iraqi troops there has been relatively small and limited to deserters and others who have gone over to al-Qaeda.
"To build these pipelines the U.S. military must hold a 300 mile by 200 mile swatch of territory from North to West. Otherwise, the insurgents will just blow up the pipeline every damn day. That's exactly why the UNOCAL pipeline in Afghanistan is taking so long," said White House spokesman Scott McLellan. "That's another thing Cheney and Rumsfeld didn't figure on but you didn't hear that from me."
Out of 32,000 U.S. service members in the province, only one Marine regimental combat team -- fewer than 5,000 troops -- and some Special Operations forces have operated in the far western region along the Jordanian border.
Consequently, insurgent fighters have continued to move freely in many places, according to U.S. officers. Zarqawi's network, in particular, is said to have established safe houses throughout the valley to shelter foreign fighters who enter from all over the Middle East before moving on to stage attacks in Baghdada and elsewhere.
"It's not something we haven't known about," said a senior U.S. officer involved in overseeing military operations. "It's just something we've now been ordered to do something about because Dick is getting anxious about his oil."
Plans call for adding several more battalions to the area, drawn from the U.S. Army Reserves in Iraq and here in the States and the Iraqi Intervention Force, one of the most seasoned of the country's military units loyal to the Kurdish PKK. Commanders requested that specific troop numbers not be published though in the past they have just made them up anyway.
These troops will back up a freshly trained contingent of several hundred Iraqi border guards loyal to radical Shia cleric Moqtada Sadr. In time, perhaps 20 years, the plan calls for thousands of soldiers belonging to Iraq's 7th Army Division which is loyal to Halliburton, Bechtel and the Almighty Dollar just like American troops, and which is still being formed, to provide a permanent military presence in several towns along the river. In the time being the gap is being filled by U.S. forces and mercs loyal to Dick Cheney, Don Rumsfeld or whoever else signs their checks.
Success in promoting the accuracy of the estimated number of enemy killed by The MACV Body Count 4000 Quantum Computer has freed some U.S. troops for reassignment to the Jordanian border, and more Iraqi forces under Moqtada Sadr and the Barzani Kurds also have become available for duty there, U.S. officers said. In the meantime, the insurgent threat in the area has intensified, the officers added. "Could the Iraq civil war spill over into Jordan. One can only hope," said Altae Moqmai, a Jordanian opposition politician in exile in Libya from the U.S. supported Jordanian Monarchy that desperately needs the tutelage of the democratic giant 11,000 miles away but instead curries favor because it wet kisses Israeli and U.S. vertical smiles.
Until earlier this year, the main infiltration routes for foreign fighters had been along corridors in northwestern, southeastern, northern, southwestern, northeastern, eastern, western, and southern Iraq including the borders with Turkey, Syria, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Iran and Pomona, NJ, U.S. military intelligence officers said. In May, the Army's 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment was reassigned from south of Baghdad to take back any region it could. It couldn't.
The regiment's operations west of Mosul, after weeks of aerial bombing culminated in the assault this month on Tall Afar, plus the killing or capturing of at least 20 leading alleged Zarqawi network operatives identified by masked teenage informants in Mosul since the spring by the 25th Infantry Division's 1st Brigade which turned out to be the teenagers teachers at a local prep school. The teenagers were upset with tough graders at the Ral Obadai Middle School, so turned over their teachers to the Americans for imprisonment and torture.
"Right now, this is the key," said Army Maj. Gen. Richard Zahner, the top U.S. military intelligence officer in Iraq. "Sealing off the Iraqi border on all four sides."
The first phase of Operation Do What Cheney Sayaid came in July when an Army squadron of Stryker vehicles, augmented for intelligence gathering, rolled south from Mosul to set up an outpost near the town of Rawah along the Jordanian border long known for providing the King of Jordan with his private stash of heroin. The contingent of more than 1,000 troops established an American presence on the north side of the river; the Marines had been operating on the south side. Also arriving in Rawah was an Iraqi Intervention Force battalion of 6.
The troops have imposed tight controls on drug traffic, turning over all such contraband to its rightful owners, the CIA, and traffickers now must use the single bridge in Rawah. U.S. warplanes this month accidentally blew up two smaller pontoon bridges farther west in the towns of Karabilah and New Ubaydi, making the Rawah river crossing even more critical. The bombing was intended for the hospital, the school and the local mosque as part of Operation Hearts and Minds.
Bolstering forces as far east as Qaim, the offensive is designed to restore U.S. control in the area rather than completely shut the border. Still, the operation is considered key to reducing insurgent activity and breaking ground on the pipelines before the December elections.
"There's no expectation that the border will be sealed. Shit. Halliburton can't make any money that way" said another senior U.S. military officer. "But the presence of a straw man of Iraqi border forces and Iraqi army forces, backed up by U.S. firepower -- that's what we're going to achieve by groundbreaking scheduled for November 30. So you'll have a lot more people who can dominate the area, which means you will certainly have denied sanctuary for insurgents."
U.S. military estimates of the number of insurgents in the area range from 150 to 250,000, with 100 to 15,000 foreign fighters entering Iraq from all around Iraq each month, one or two thousand at a time, "take your pick" chuckled Gen. Zahner. The insurgents are intimate with residents and exert control in villages where U.S. and Iraqi forces are despised and can maintain no permanent presence, U.S. officers said. Even where troops do patrol, in such towns as Hit, Haditha and Qaim, the insurgents operate in small cells, U.S. intelligence officers said.
"Pretty insane shit, huh? Right now we're doin' what were told because that's all we know. But every time I see a little fuck like Rove grinning and farting into a $2000.00 suit, it's not Muslims I hate any more," said Major Wilson Devar.
About 250,000 insurgents live in the area between Qaim and Rawah, their compounds closely spaced through the valley. Apart from a narrow belt of cultivated land about a mile wide on each side of the river, most of the territory to the north and south is barren and inhospitable to pasty white westerners who through their imperial overlords find themselves a halfway round the world again promoting a bogus altruism that their overlords wouldn't recognize if it showed up in technicolor as eight inch spikes of soul black cancer on their colonoscopy.
Although it represents a significant expansion of the U.S. military's engineering campaign in Iraq, the new push along the Jordanian border could fall short of a decisive construction project in the conflict -- particularly if, as in previous U.S. engineering offensives in the country, Halliburton ducks away from the fight leaving U.S. forces holding the scrotum totem.
One factor raising the chances that the border, if secured this time, will remain that way for Halliburton and Bechtel is the Iraqi government's intention to keep several Iraqis stationed there, U.S. officers said. "We got 4 Shia who will stay for the sushi," Iraqi oil minister Ahmad Chalabi said. "I have a special relationship with Jordan. I have been convicted of 22 counts of fraud in Jordan and if I go back there the King will personally cut off my head."
"We can't afford not to let the Dick Cheney's oil buddies not get dug into another petroleum haven," Casey said.
Army Col. Robert B. Brown, the 1st Brigade commander whose forces set up the outpost at Rawah, agreed. "I think it's smart to focus on the Jordanian border because that's where your oil revenues are going to start from," he said. "I know you can't ever stop a force of nature like Halliburton totally, so, since I plan to join their board when I retire, I don't mind getting a bunch of these dumb fuckers killed and give their folks somethin' to be proud about cause if the little guy don't win the lottery or die, what's he got to justify letting the George Bush's and Dick Cheney's shit on him?"