0653 GMT March 21, 2018
The offensive launched last October by the Iraqi Army against Daesh terrorists in Mosul is producing results.
The military, which had earlier gained major achievements in eastern Mosul, has exerted pressure on the terrorists in the city’s west and recaptured its airport.
More than four months into the offensive, the advance has slowed because Daesh has been using citizens as human shields to prevent the Iraqi Army from gaining ground.
Iraqi Army officials confirm that the operation has been considerably slow. They say protecting civilian lives is more important to the military, stressing that the army cannot recapture the entire city at the cost of killing people.
Military conditions and the intensity of the war in Mosul can be studied from military and political angles.
In terms of military analysis, the Mosul offensive which aimed at retaking the city from Daesh, will provide the country’s army with a top opportunity in future battles.
Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, who has successfully provided coordination in the army, has concluded that he cannot restore the public’s trust of the army unless Mosul is liberated.
The recapturing of the city will also result in helping the prime minister press ahead with anti-terror plans, for the image of the Iraqi Army was tarnished after Daesh captured it in June, 2014.
In terms of the political and security aspect, the Mosul operation could have inevitable outcomes for the Iraqi government and army.
Since the offensive began, a question was raised; “Will defeating Daesh end the war on terror in Iraq?”
Daesh terrorists, who have no scruples about committing atrocities, will likely pose themselves as civilians (when Mosul is liberated) and perpetrate fresh crimes.
This is presently raising concern among Iraqi officials who are seeking to preserve the security of the people in the areas that will be recaptured form the terrorists.
If Daesh loses the war, it will likely keep a number of its terrorists in the liberated areas to create insecurity.
Hence, defeating Daesh may not end the war on the terror group.
To sum up, the fate of Daesh will not be decided by liberating Mosul.
Matin Moslem is a political analyst.