The torrent of Ripper news has slowed to a trickle. Even the Multi-National Force-Iraq public affairs press release is down to three quick paragraphs.
There is still some good stuff out there, though. Lauren Frayer’s Associated Press story (we ran it today here) is a great read – 3rd Brigade infantrymen are taking their time moving through the bomb-infested streets of west Baqouba.
Among the links posted on Strykernews.com, there’s the Julian Barnes story in the LA Times that puts Ripper in the broader context of the current U.S. military strategy — the run-up to Gen. David Petraeus’ report to Congress in September.
For much, much more depth on what the current ops are all about, check out Australian Col. David Kilcullen’s piece at Small Wars Journal. He’s senior counterinsurgency adviser to Petraeus. A must read, and thanks to Heartless Libertarian for passing along the link.
Strykernews also links to Drew Brown’s reporter’s notebook in the Stars & Stripes, which includes one amusing moment with the Joes of Commanche Company in the 1st Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment. Sgt. Robert Walls is a lock for a coveted Broken Tomahawk award.
Blogger Bill Roggio includes Ripper details in his latest summary. Nothing new from Yon or Gordon.
Meantime, brigade sources in Baqouba are saying they’re in no rush and are very methodically calling in air strikes and artillery fire missions to destroy the huge numbers of bombs they’re finding, in part with the assistance of former Sunni insurgents who have turned against the al-Qaida in Iraq fighters who’d taken root in the city. Per the MNF-I press release, they were up over 80 bombs and 18 booby-trapped houses destroyed.