Flag drop!

OK, here we go – some extra news bulletins for you. The ground war started late last night.

It looks like we decided to skip the whole massive bombardment phase, and go straight in for the kill. Significant ground troop movements, apparently despite yesterday’s sandstorm.

Southern front: US Marines and British 1ArmorDiv towards Um Qasr (naval port); a column of US 3InfDiv crossed into Iraq from Kuwait, prob. towards Nassariyah. Large-scale defections of Iraqi officers reported.

Rumors have it: (Get this!) that Tariq Aziz (dep. prime minister, the guy who’s on TV all the time) and Taha Yassin Ramadan (the VP) have headed for the hills, and that Aziz has either sought sanctuary from or been captured by Kurdish forces.
Update: And this rumor has turned out to be false – Aziz is still in Baghdad, making his usual angry speeches. I thought this one sounded kinda hard to believe.

Israel has completed reserves call-up of 12k people, as well as anti-missile deployment.

Published in: on March 19, 2003 at 09:24  Comments (3)  


  1. 12k people? What is that in comparision with Israel’s usual standing army?
    Any thoughts/expectations WRT attacks on Israel during this? I seem to recall reading that they were expecting to take a much more hawkish approach toward retailiation against missile strikes…

  2. Significant but not huge; although I don’t know the numbers for army size. These people are mostly being massed just in case Syria decides to invade.
    And no idea about what’s going to happen. It really depends on what Iraq and Syria do; if either of them attack Israel, it’s going to turn into a regional war. One missile might not do it, but anything significant – like a nonconventional attack or multiple missiles – probably will.

  3. Troop movements hardly constitute a start of the ground war. We’re getting ready, sure, but it isn’t a ground war until you make contact with the enemy.
    And I highly doubt we’re going to skip the massive bombardment phase. It’ll take a lot longer for those on the ground to reach their targets than the missiles, so it’s no surprise the former start moving first.
    I expect the real ground war will start by the end of the week, but not until after most of Iraq’s military infrastructure has been leveled by missiles.

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