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Op IMPACT: CAF in the Iraq & Syria crisis

Good2Golf

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Lumber said:
Completely aside, I just had a mid-shower kind of thought:

Why do we start with Roto 0 and not Roto 1? Shouldn't the first roto be roto 1?

No.  Roto 1 is the first true "rotation"....the first deployment is not a rotation but an initial deployment of troops...although, that said, it picked up the mathematical nomenclature of something to the 0th power (x[sup]0[/su]=1) equals one...first.  I saw "R0" pop up some the mid-to-late 90s...

Regards
G2G
 

Eye In The Sky

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Battle for Mosul: Operation to retake Iraqi city from IS begins


An Iraqi operation to recapture the city of Mosul, the last major stronghold of the so-called Islamic State (IS) in the country, has started.

Artillery began firing on the city early on Monday, in a long-awaited assault from Kurdish peshmerga, Iraqi government and allied forces.

Tanks are now moving towards the city, which has been held by IS since 2014.

The UN has expressed "extreme concern" for the safety of up to 1.5 million people in the area.

The BBC's Orla Guerin, who is with Kurdish forces east of Mosul, says tanks are advancing on the city, throwing up clouds of dust. 

As the operation began, one Kurdish general told our correspondent: "If I am killed today I will die happy because I have done something for my people."

Kurdish forces say they have retaken a number of villages in their advance.

Meanwhile pro-government forces are attacking from an airbase in Qayyarah, about 60km (37 miles) to the south, which was recaptured in August.

The US-led coalition fighting IS is backing the assault with air strikes, The operation is complex and analysts say it could last for weeks, if not months.

The start of the operation was announced by Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi in a televised address in the early hours of Monday (local time). "The hour of victory has come," he said.

"God willing we will meet in Mosul to celebrate the liberation and your salvation from Isis (IS) so we can live together once again, all religions united and together we shall defeat Daesh to rebuild this dear city of Mosul," Mr Abadi said.

Who is fighting?

About 30,000 pro-government troops are involved in the operation. The main assault is being led by Iraqi army troops based south of Mosul.

About 4,000 Kurdish peshmerga militia have begun clearing villages in the east.

Sunni tribal fighters and Shia-led paramilitary forces are also due to take part. Planes from the US-led coalition against IS are providing air support

How will battle unfold? By Michael Knights, Washington Institute for Near East Policy

What can be said with certainty is that the liberation of Mosul will be a multi-phased operation.

First the logistical base for the operation must be established at Qayyarah airbase. This is also the collecting point for the Iraqi forces that will liberate Mosul.

The next phase will be a multi-pronged advance on the outskirts of Mosul. This phase will unfold in fits and spurts: one day 10 miles will be gained easily, another day there will be tough fighting at an IS strongpoint or a pause to bring up supplies.

During November and December the main battle will probably begin. But for the Iraqi and coalition forces, the issue of civilians will be a tricky factor.

Why Mosul matters

Mosul, the oil-rich capital of Nineveh province, was Iraq's second-largest city before IS militants overran it in June 2014.

Its capture became a symbol of the group's rise as a major force and its ability to control territory. It was there that IS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi proclaimed a "caliphate" in parts of Iraq and neighbouring Syria.

The city was one of Iraq's most diverse, comprising ethnic Sunni Arabs, Kurds, Assyrians and Turkmens, as well as a variety of religious minorities.

While members of those minorities largely fled the onslaught by IS, many local Sunni Arabs initially welcomed the militants, angered by the sectarian policies of the previous Shia Arab-led central government.

But after two years of brutal IS rule, opposition has reportedly grown inside Mosul.

One major concern for those still there is the involvement of Shia militiamen in the offensive, after they were accused of sectarian abuses in other cities that have been recaptured.

Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi has sought to reassure them by saying only Iraqi security forces would be allowed to enter Mosul.

Even if IS is driven out of Mosul, the group will still control areas of northern and eastern Iraq.

The UN's under-secretary for humanitarian affairs and emergency relief coordinator, Stephen O'Brien, asked for civilians to be protected and be given access to assistance "they are entitled to and deserve".

"I am extremely concerned for the safety of up to 1.5 million people living in Mosul who may be impacted," he said in statement.

As many as a million people could be forced to flee their homes because of the operation, he added.

There are no firm figures on how many people remain in Mosul, but there were more than two million there when IS took the city more than two years ago.
 

The Bread Guy

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Journeyman said:
Putin says hopes U.S. will seek to avoid civilian casualties in Mosul

This, from the guy who dusted off his Chechnya playbook to turn Aleppo into Grozny 2.0    ::)
Hey, hey, hey -- Russia's "trying it's best" to avoid CIVCAS in Aleppo, adding "if they were caused by his country's bombing it would be a heavy burden on Russia's psyche and soul" -- after all, <BorisBadinovAccent>“we can’t allow terrorists to use people as human shields and blackmail the entire world”</BorisBadinovAccent>, can we?  ;D
 

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Armymedic

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Info from Globe and mail:

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/canadian-forces-providing-crucial-support-in-battle-to-recapture-mosul/article32403507/

Who was whining about being talked about in the media?:

"Overhead, two Canadian spy planes, the CP-140 Auroras, are gathering intelligence that will be used by coalition planners to generate lists of Islamic State targets to be bombed. As well, the Royal Canadian Air Force’s Polaris tanker is refuelling coalition warplanes conducting the bombing raids."

Also, newly disclosed in the news brief a couple weeks ago:

"Not far from the front line – but not so close as to be in harm’s way – up to 60 Canadians will be operating a field hospital to treat the wounded Kurds, Iraqi government forces or their allies. The Role 2 facility will not be big but will triage, resuscitate, treat and care for injured soldiers until they return to duty or are evacuated.
 

KrUsTyX

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Eye In The Sky said:
That's good news.  But, the way it was explained to me, folks like me who were ROTO 0 are a lower priority than those currently in theatre when it comes to "applications" in MAPS.

Certainly not the end of the world, but this is something we can do better.  The clusterfuck I went thru seems fairly common for almost everyone I was over with; uncertainty over what medal, medals, who is doing it, when it should be done, etc.  It took months to get it sorted out and I shook my head as it seemed I was the one who understood things more than the Medals Clerk - Dolphin_Hunter provided me with a very clear, concise email from a Medals Clerks at DH & R that laid it all out.  I forwarded that on and...it still went off the rails.

Flush Brush Flush!!  ;D

Roto 0, people that were in Akrotiri?
 

KrUsTyX

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Eye In The Sky said:

Are they eligible for any medal?  The General Campaign Star – EXPEDITION (GCS-EXP)?

Could you forward me that email you are talking about if possible? :)

Thanks
 

Eye In The Sky

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I don't have access to the email account it is stored in right now, and I didn't forward it to my civie email.

Maybe Dolphin_Hunter can PM it or post it... ;D
 

Zoomie

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KrUsTyX said:
Are they eligible for any medal?  The General Campaign Star – EXPEDITION (GCS-EXP)?

GCS-EXP
Iraq 2014-08-28 to Present                      OP IMPACT              Service by CAF members inside the theatre of operations consisting of the political boundaries of Iraq and its airspace.

If they flew inside Iraq airspace within that timeframe - they might be eligible.
 

Eye In The Sky

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Canadian troops watching for human rights abuses as battle for Mosul rages

About 40,000 anti-ISIS forces are fighting for the Iraqi city — uneasy allies who could quickly turn enemies

Canadian special forces troops have been told to keep an eye out for possible human rights abuses and sectarian score-settling as the battle to liberate Iraq's second largest city from the Islamic State continues to unfold.

The assertion came on the same day a leading U.S.-based rights group accused Kurdish forces of practising a scorched earth policy — routinely destroying Arab homes, but leaving Kurdish ones intact, in areas cleared of ISIS control.

Mosul is the last ISIS stronghold in Iraq and the extremists there have been waging a deliberate campaign of terror meant to incite sectarian tensions.

A coalition of some 40,000 anti-ISIS forces is fighting for the city — a medley of fighters that includes Iraqi army units, militarized police, special forces, Kurdish troops and Iranian-backed Shia militias.

That means the campaign to evict ISIS from Mosul — which has been going on for almost a month — is being waged by uneasy allies who could quickly turn into enemies.

Keeping an eye on allies

There's concern that the Iranian-backed Shia militias — operating west of the mostly Sunni city, with the consent of the Iraqi government — could take revenge on suspected Sunni collaborators.

Kurdish forces, whom Canadians have been training for the past two years, are also wary.

There were reports over the last week that some Sunnis who have fled the fighting were expelled from Kirkuk, a city further south, by Kurdish security, over fears they might be sleeper agents.

It is something the U.S.-led coalition has been keeping a wary eye on, Canadian officials said Sunday.

"It is a concern," said Christina Marcotte, a civilian policy adviser with the Canadian task force headquartered in Kuwait.

Canadian role to advise

"Certainly from the point of view of the government of Canada, we expect our military members who are up there right now to report any incidents. To date there have been no reports of such incidents."

It was revealed last month that Canadian troops were spending more time at the front lines as the anti-ISIS campaign shifted from defence to offence. There are approximately 200 Canadian special forces members in Iraq, mostly advising the Kurds and assisting by observing the battles and helping call in airstrikes.

The mission has been billed as "non-combat," though the government says they can shoot in self-defence.

A senior Canadian representative with the multinational coalition said the Iraqi government will not tolerate the kind of sectarian blood-letting that has been a horrific feature of life in that country since the U.S. occupation.

Brig.-Gen Greg Smith, who serves as the chief of staff to the coalition land headquarters, said Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi made it clear that those committing atrocities will be held accountable under the laws of armed conflict.

"This is not a group of fighters going around waging war against the population," Smith said via video conference from Baghdad.

He paraphrased an old quote, saying the cleanliness of the war will determine the cleanliness of the peace that follows.

"In a multi-ethnic country with a lot of history, like Iraq, they're very sensitive to that in particular,"  Smith said.

Battle could take a long time

He wouldn't, however, speculate on how long it will take for the Iraqis and Kurds to recapture the city, which fell to the Islamic State in 2014. Coalition commanders have previously predicted the Mosul campaign could last months.

The battle is slow going. In many cases, it's now going street by street, block by block.

The Kurds have made strong progress in the east and have entered the outskirts of the city. The Shia militias just recently began their push in the west.

Some analysts suggest the campaign is being held up by the inexperience of Iraqi troops, who are pushing in from the south.

The commander of the Canadian task force urged patience.

"I don't necessarily agree with the words 'held up.' What we have got underway right now is a complex battle in urban terrain," said Brig.-Gen. Shane Brennan. "In the urban battleground, everything is slow, i.e. it's close."

The Iraqis and Kurds have suffered roughly 200 dead and over 1,000 wounded in the campaign thus far — casualties that will put further strain on already frayed relationships.
 

Eye In The Sky

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Latest stats for ATF-I

Attention: Latest news

Aircraft sorties

As of November 5, 2016, Air Task Force-Iraq has conducted 2,606 sorties*:
CC-150T Polaris aerial refueller conducted 602 sorties, delivering some 35,200,000 pounds of fuel to coalition aircraft; and
CP-140 Aurora aircraft conducted 626 reconnaissance missions.

Definition - sortie: in air operations, a sortie refers to an operational flight by one aircraft. A sortie starts when one aircraft takes off and ends upon landing.

*This total includes 1378 sorties conducted by CF-18 Hornets between October 30, 2014 and February 15, 2016.
 

The Bread Guy

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R.I.P. -- this, from the Info-machine ...
A Canadian Armed Forces member, Major Scott Foote, died today from non-combat related circumstances in Amman, Jordan. He was found unconscious in a military gym and was later pronounced dead after efforts to revive him were unsuccessful. As with any death of a Canadian Armed Forces member, an investigation into the circumstances of Major Foote’s death is currently underway. Until the investigation has been completed, only limited details will be made available.

Our thoughts are with the family and friends of our fallen soldier during this difficult time. The Canadian Armed Forces will support Major Foote’s loved ones to provide them assistance. We will not forget his sacrifice as we continue on our mission in Jordan.

Major Scott Foote was a logistics officer from 1 Canadian Division Headquarters, based at Canadian Forces Base Kingston. He was working in Jordan as a liaison officer within the Canadian Defence Attaché’s office. He was part of the Canadian Training Assessment Team supporting the Op IMPACT Building Partner Capacity effort in Jordan.

Major Foote worked with Jordanian and Canadian defence officials to facilitate opportunities for the Canadian Armed Forces to increase the Jordanian Armed Forces’ capabilities. His work helped set the conditions for the long-term success of our Jordanian partners by enabling their security forces to improve security and stability in the region.

Quote

    “We lost a member of our deployed team today, and a Canadian family has lost a loved one in the service of Canada. Major Scott Foote was a dedicated officer, and his passing will be felt by service members, as it will be keenly felt by his family and friends. We will carry on with our mission with heavy hearts but steadfast resolve. We will remember him.”

    — Rear Admiral Bob Auchterlonie, Acting/Commander Canadian Joint Operations Command

- 30 -​
 

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The Bread Guy

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-- More from MSM on Major Foote's death here via Google News
-- Problems within the Kurds Canada's helping out?
Kurdistan Region President has strongly criticized “some parties” for planning a coup in the Kurdistan Region while the Peshmerga forces are making sacrifices in the battle against Islamic State (IS).

“Kurdistan [Region] has been in a bloody war against the most barbaric group for the past two years, I understood that people and intellectuals of a country will be united in such threatening situation to ward off the threat… but we saw some [parties] created such an internal situation,” Barzani said during a speech in the newly-liberated Bashiq town in north of Mosul.

Without naming any specific persons on political party, Barzani said they better stop the coup attempt as their achievement will be equal to nothing, to what they have so far achieved.

He called on all the Kurdish political parties to gather and discuss their disputes in order to find a solution to the disagreements, stressing out that the parties must show their good willing before any initiation.

Reiterating that independence is a “natural right” for the Kurds, Barzani said they will never compromise on that but it should be achieved through a peaceful process. “We have spoken openly with Baghdad about independence. We couldn't achieve partnership. Let's try living as peaceful neighbors,” the Kurdish president pointed out, explaining that there is the possibility of declaring independence without a referendum if the dialogue with Baghdad succeeds ...
 

The Bread Guy

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From the Info-machine ...
Media are invited to attend the repatriation ceremony for Major Scott Foote, member of 1st Canadian Division Kingston, at 8 Wing Trenton on Sunday. Major Foote died recently in Amman, Jordan from circumstances not directly related to military operations.

When: 2 p.m., Sunday, November 20, 2016

Where: Passenger Terminal, 6 North Star West, 8 Wing Trenton

What: A repatriation ceremony for the remains of Major Scott Foote, a logistics officer from 1st Canadian Division Headquarters, based at Canadian Forces Base Kingston, will take place on the east ramp at 8 Wing Trenton ...
 
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