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Shiite 'Ali al-Akbar Brigade' in Acti...
Baiji, Iraq
By mushtaq mohammed
02 May 2015

Baiji, Iraq
May 2, 2015

Video shows fighters from the Shiite Ali al-Akbar Brigde militia firing different sorts of weapons against positions held by ISIS near Baiji, Iraq. The footage also includes shots taken with a camera attached to a fighter's body.

TRANSCRIPT

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Man) Qassem Musleh, Commander of Ali al-Akbar Brigade, part of the Popular Mobilization military umbrella group

02:55- 05:00

“After we started scouting deep territories held by the enemy, we are entering these territories to know the enemy’s military formations and weapons. The latest information we have received was that there is a large number of foreign fighters in this area. Baiji area has practically fallen militarily and we have surrounded the enemy in these areas, which are in the range of our fire. These areas are Maleha, Baiji and what is known here as Mazraa Watwan.
Thanks be to God, several of their vehicles have been burnt and a bridge, which was their only outlet and provision line, has been controlled. Last night we managed to… before that we were able to enter the area of Mazraa, which was the most dangerous area. It was one of their training posts and fortified strongholds.
We were able to infiltrate and discover what the enemy had. However, we were scared of the booby traps they had set up. Today, thanks be to God, the engineering corps advanced with excavation vehicles and opened the road. We were able to march ahead and hit the fence surrounding the orchard, which was a real obstacle that they considered unreachable. Thanks be to God, we managed to break the first wall that surrounded the orchard and infiltrated that territory with a large number of snipers and light vehicles. We managed to strike the enemy and inflict heavy losses on it.
Thanks be to God, we managed to subdue them, but we were also supported by artillery shelling and airstrikes, which is why were able to reach this point without suffering any significant losses.”

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Popular Mobilization Forces in Baiji
Iraq
By mushtaq mohammed
02 May 2015

Video shows fighters from the Popular Mobilization Iraqi Shiite militias on the battlefront against ISIS in Baiji.

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Intense Combat Footage from Inside th...
Tikrit
By mushtaq mohammed
16 Apr 2015

Tikrit, Iraq
April 1, 2014

Inside footage, recorded with a camera attached to a cameraman’s body, offers an intimate look at a battle between Iraqi forces and ISIS over control of the city of Tikrit. Dozens of fighters from the Federal Police Special Forces, the Iraqi Army and Shiite militias advance through an open field to the sounds of heavy gunshots and flying warplanes.

Combatants, shouting war cries in praise of Muslim Shiite saints, quickly run through marshes and between low hills before reaching heavily war damaged buildings. The fighters stop when some of them suspect a booby-trapped wire before eventually recommencing their advance.

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi announced that his forces had recaptured the strategic city of Tikrit on Tuesday March 30, 2015. The official Iraqiya television station published a headline quoting the PM's words: “Tikrit has fallen to us. However, local sources in Tikrit say that ISIS still controls many parts of the city and that heavy fighting is still going on.

NAT Sound
(Arabic) 01:21 – 01:36

“There is a wire in front of me. It is a wire that triggers an explosive device. Bashir! Be careful! There is an explosive device. Do not move.”

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Government Forces Raise Iraqi Flag Ov...
Tikrit
By mushtaq mohammed
01 Apr 2015

March 31, 2015
Tikrit, Iraq

Video shows soldiers from the Iraqi Army with remaining Shiite militias clash with ISIS as they advance into Tikrit, raise Iraqi flag over former ISIS strongholds. Many Shiite militias had refused to participate in the assault after the intervention of the US in the campaign.

The first shot is of burning building with an ISIS flag amidst the smoke. Later we see troops raising the Iraqi flag over a previous ISIS fortification. One can also make out a drone and an Iraqi officer giving coordinates on a walkie-talkie.

Iraq’s leader, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, announced that his forces had recaptured the strategic city of Tikrit on Tuesday March 30, 2015. The official Iraqiya television station published a headline quoting the PM's words: “Tikrit has fallen to us.”

Nonetheless, local sources in Tikrit say that ISIS still controls many parts of the city and that heavy fighting is still going on.

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Iraqi Forces Sweep ISIS-Controlled A...
Tikrit
By mushtaq mohammed
31 Mar 2015

Iraqi government forces backed by the Ali al-Akbar Brigade Shiite militia that forms part of the umbrella militia group called the Popular Mobilization (al-Hashid al-Shaabi) clash with ISIS militants less than 2km from the heart of Tikrit.

Media reports quoted Iraqi army and Shiite militia commanders as saying their forces have retaken the Salahuddine province governor's headquarters in central Tikrit from ISIS.

SHOTLIST

Wide of officers reading a map
Wide of fighters advancing through large in a wall
Various of fighters setting up and firing a mortar
Wide of fighters firing machinegun mounted on armored vehicle
Wide of tank moving
Various of armored vehicles
Various of fighters shooting at remote buildings
Various of fighters running across open field
Wide of fighters and Iraqi flag on top of a building
Various of fighters running across open field
Various of fighters and armored vehicles
Wide of tank advancing
Wide of buildings being targeted with gunshots
Wide of smoke rising from explosion
Wide of fighter praying next to armored vehicle
Wide of fighters inside a moving armored vehicle
Various of fighters on top of a building shooting
Wide of fighter firing rocket-propelled grenade
Wide of a paramedic taking a fighter’s blood pressure

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Trench Shields Shiite Iraqi Province ...
Karbala
By mushtaq mohammed
27 Mar 2015

Karabala, Iraq
March 27, 2015

A trench is being dug on the border of the southern Shiite-majority Iraqi province of Karbala with the provinces of al-Anbar and Babel. The ditch, which extends for 50km, is 6m deep and 10m wide and is guarded by surveillance towers and checkpoints manned by Iraqi government forces and a Shiite militia known as the Al-Abbas Combat Division.

Colonel Hassan al-Silawi, the commander of the 33rd Infantry Brigade in the Iraqi army, said in an interview that this trench aims to keep ISIS fighters from entering Karbala from al-Anbar province. Silawi denied that this obstacle was conceived to separate Sunni and Shiite populations.

Another interviewed officer denied claims made by Sunni politicians that the aim of the trench was to annex territory to the province Karbala. The city of Karbala hosts the tomb of Imam Hussein, one of the holiest shrines for Shiite Muslims.

SHOTLIST AND TRANSCRIPT

Wide of soldiers standing next to surveillance tower
Wide of trench
Various of soldiers guarding trench
Wide of Iraqi army Humvee and soldier
Wide of soldiers running on sand barrier
Interview with Colonel Hassan al-Silawi, Commander of the 33rd Infantry Brigade
Wide of soldiers next to sand barricade
Various of soldier manning machinegun behind sand barricade
Various of soldiers guarding trench
Various of soldiers and military vehicles next to sand barricade
Interview with Colonel Hassan al-Silawi, Commander of the 33rd Infantry Brigade
Various of soldiers and military vehicles
Wide of pickup truck moving and banner with Shiite religious symbols
Wide of tents and Iraqi flags
Interview with Major Jaber Ahmed, Infantry Platoon Commander
Various of trench
Various of soldier in surveillance tower looking through binoculars
Wide of soldiers and vehicles at checkpoint. Phrase written with bricks in Arabic reads: “Long live Iraq.”
Wide of solider next to Iraqi flag
Wide of Iraqi soldier on guard

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Man) Colonel Hassan al-Silawi, Commander of the 33rd Infantry Brigade
01:18 – 02:50

“The trench extends for about 50km along the administrative border between the provinces of Babel and Karbala. No, it is not about Sunni or Shiite provinces. This trench is an obstacle set up for military purposes. It has nothing to do with whether an area is Sunni or Shiite. This is a desert. These lands do not belong to any individual; they belong to the Ministry of Agriculture.

"The trench will be guarded by platoons from the 33rd Infantry Brigade in addition to groups from the Popular Mobilization [Shiite militia umbrella], especially the Al-Abbas Combat Division. The trench was dug by the province of the holy Karbala in agreement with the local governments of neighboring provinces. This system involves surveillance towers and cameras, as well as a dirt barrier that is 5m high and 6m wide.

"This trench was dug in the desert – an unpopulated area. There are no agricultural areas or shepherds. This is a desert, barren land. The aim of digging the trench is to stop the terrorist ISIS organization from training in this area.”

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Man) Colonel Hassan al-Silawi, Commander of the 33rd Infantry Brigade
04:00- 04:48

"The soldiers are not scared because it is their duty to fight. We are terrorizing ISIS; ISIS is scared of us. The proof is that we liberated areas with the support of the Popular Mobilizations forces. This is a border of separation in desert areas neighboring the province of Karbala. The trench goes along the administrative border of three regions – Babel, Ramadi and the province of Karbala.

"There is no transgression. There is an agreement among local governments. This [trench] serves all the provinces. The public interest comes ahead of everything, especially when it comes to security. There are no lands that belong to the state or agricultural land, either. It is a desert area."

SOUNDBITE (Arabic, Man) Major Jaber Ahmed, Infantry Platoon Commander
05:12 – 05:51

“Thanks be to God, so far no security breach has been recorded in this district. Thanks be to God, it was because of the efforts of the head of operations, the commander of the 33rd Brigade."

Interviewer: "How would describe your morale?"

"Our morale is very high, thanks to [the military commanders]. God willing, the operations to liberate Falluja, which is close to us, as well as Tikrit, have started. God willing, operations will also start within Al-Anbar. God willing, the operations will keep going. We are guarding the northern district of the province of Karbala. Our morale is high, thanks be to God.”