The Pentagons says dozens of US military vehicles have been abandoned by Iraqi troops in the flashpoint city of Ramadi after the ISIL Takfiri terrorists took the full control of the city.
Pentagon spokesman Colonel Steve Warren estimated that the abandoned vehicles included half dozen tanks, a similar number of artillery pieces, a larger number of armored personnel carriers and about 100 wheeled vehicles like Humvees.
According to Warren, some of the vehicles were in working condition; others were not because they had not been moved for months.
When asked if Iraqi troops should have destroyed the vehicles before abandoning Ramadi in order to keep them from falling into the hands of the terrorists, Warren said, “Certainly preferable if they had been destroyed; in this case they were not.”
He said the US is confident that Ramadi will be retaken by Iraq, however, “It will be difficult.”
Displaced Iraqis, who fled the violence in the Iraqi city of Ramadi, arrive at the outskirts of Baghdad, on April 19, 2015. (AFP photo)
ISIL claimed in an online statement on Sunday that it had taken full control of Ramadi, capital of Iraq’s largest province of Anbar, a gateway to Syria, Jordan and Saudi Arabia.
The statement said the terrorists had “purged the entire city and had taken the 8th Brigade army base, along with tanks and missile launchers left behind by troops.”
General Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, issued a statement on Monday and defended President Barack Obama’s strategy in fighting ISIL. He said “Setbacks are regrettable but not uncommon in warfare.”
Unlike Dempsey, former defense secretary Robert Gates believed that the US does not “really have a strategy at all.”
He told MSNBC on Tuesday that “we’re basically playing this day by day.”
The ISIL terrorists, who were initially trained by the CIA in Jordan in 2012 to destabilize the Syrian government, are engaged in crimes against humanity in the areas under their control.
They have been carrying out horrific acts of violence such as public decapitations and crucifixions against all communities, including Shias, Sunnis, Kurds, and Christians.