Washington – President Donald Trump will remove Iraq from a list of countries targeted in a US travel ban when he is expected to sign a new executive order on Monday after his controversial first attempt was blocked in the courts, a White House source said.
The senior White House official said the new executive order would keep a 90-day ban on travel to the United States by citizens of six Muslim-majority nations – Iran, Libya, Syria, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen.
Iraq was taken off the list of countries in the original order, issued on Jan. 27, because the Iraqi government had imposed new vetting procedures, such as heightened visa screening and data sharing, and because of its work with the United States in countering Islamic State militants, the official said…. [read more]
Watch Amir’s latest Prophecy Update where he addresses Syria, Iraq, ISIS and much more
VISIT MORE PROPHECY UPDATES EACH WEEK HERE.
By Ulf Laessing and Maher Chmaytelli | MOSUL/BAGHDAD, IRAQ
Fighting between Iraqi troops and Islamic State militants has cut water supplies across a large part of Mosul, where poorer families are already struggling to feed themselves, and a local official said the increasingly encircled city was in crisis.
Water was cut to 650,000 people – or 40 percent of residents – when a pipeline was hit during fighting between the jihadists and U.S.-backed Iraqi government forces trying to crush them in their northern Iraq stronghold, a local official said.
“We are facing a humanitarian catastrophe,” said Hussam al-Abar, a member of Mosul’s Nineveh provincial council, adding that 1.5 million people were still inside Mosul. He said the pipeline ran through a contested part of the city and could not be reached by repair teams.
“Basic services such as water, electricity, health, food are non-existent,” he said, standing in an eastern suburb while mortars were fired inside the city.
The battle for Mosul has already raged for six weeks. An alliance of Iraqi forces, backed by U.S.-led air power, have surrounded it and elite troops have seized eastern districts, but face deadly and determined resistance…. [read more]
The ongoing operation in Mosul, Iraq, is taking its toll on US troops, with 16 killed and 27 wounded, according to a military source in Moscow cited by TASS. The US Department of Defense has told RT America it is only aware of one casualty.
“During the first two weeks of the ground operation to capture Mosul, 16 American servicemen lost their lives, 27 more sustained various wounds,” the source told TASS. The majority of the losses were due to “land mine explosions, artillery and mortar shelling.”
In certain cases, however, poor coordination between ground troops and air support was reportedly to blame for those killed or injured. “Two special operations soldiers died following airstrikes by US B-52H jets on Mosul suburbs,” the source said…. [read more]
“As I was an adviser in Vietnam it’s very high risk sometimes to be out with these units and of course if these units come under attack by ISIS forces and others there is going to be casualties, there is no doubt about it,” Vallely said.
Finally, the battle to liberate Mosul, Iraq’s second largest city, from the bloodthirsty clutches of the Islamic State is underway.
With Iraqi Christians, Yazidis and other minorities suffering nothing short of genocide, the Iraqi military is currently engaged in a serious, systematic, albeit long-overdue campaign to crush ISIS and restore safety and stability to northern Iraq once and for all. Baghdad is working with a coalition that includes Iraqi Kurdish paramilitary forces known as the Peshmerga, backed up by U.S. intelligence, air support, special forces and tactical advisors.
This is good news, and I’m encouraged by early reports of progress, as this is a strategy to defeat ISIS that I’ve been advocating for some time (see here, here, and here).
The big question, as I see it, is not whether this coalition will ultimately be successful in liberating northern Iraq from ISIS (I believe they will be), but what happens the day after ISIS is gone. How will order be restored? How will the Christian community begin to rebuild their lives? And how will Baghdad help, rather than harm?….. [read more]