The Battle for Fallujah

Occupation, Resistance and Stalemate in the War in Iraq


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About the Book

In May of 2003, Fallujah, Iraq, was a little known industrial town 45 minutes from Baghdad. There, heavily subsidized industries relied on the government of Sunni leader Saddam Hussein for their meager income and the people of Fallujah lived by the principles of loyalty and reward. Nevertheless, when American troops arrived in Iraq, these same Iraqis viewed the downfall of Saddam’s regime as a result of his weakness (he had fallen from favor with God) rather than a testament to American strength. Although unimpressed with the Americans, Fallujah initially seemed willing to give them an opportunity to follow through with their promises of more jobs, improved living conditions and better medical aid. As the months passed, however, fulfillment was continually hampered by political red tape and military clashes escalated. The streets of Fallujah began to fill with insurgents, ultimately becoming a stronghold for Iraqi opposition to the American presence.
This book chronicles America’s struggle with the city of Fallujah. Beginning with the arrival of Americans on their way to Baghdad in 2003, it details the movements, counter-movements and misunderstandings that led up to the eventual standoff. It looks at how the power struggle in the inner circle of the CJTF-7 (essentially the American command) resulted in conflicting strategies for guiding the country to recovery—a “War of Ideas” versus a “Test of Wills.” Lack of cultural understanding, multiple political agendas and increasing outrages on both sides complicated an already tense situation. Finally, the work provides a day-by-day account of the siege which eventually retook the city of Fallujah in November 2004 (four months after occupation was scheduled to end).

About the Author(s)

Vincent L. Foulk is currently serving in Iraq as an advisor to the Iraqi Government on investigating and prosecuting corruption.

Bibliographic Details

Vincent L. Foulk
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 240
Bibliographic Info: 31 photos, notes, index
Copyright Date: 2007
pISBN: 978-0-7864-2677-5
eISBN: 978-1-4766-1475-5
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Preface      1

1. “…They are occupiers and infidels”      3
2. The First Battle of Fallujah      20
3. Kidnapping as a Tool of War      47
4. The Decline in Credibility: Fallout of Abu Ghraib      62
5. Just Not Enough to Do the Job      68
6. The Routine Distant THUMP      76
7. Living with the IEDs      81
8. The Low-Tech Cruise Missile      91
9. Bloody Baghdad      99
10. The Olympians      108
11. Moqtada al-Sadr      116
12. The South      135
13. The Sunni Triangle      141
14. Facing Reality      150
15. A Race to Establish the Norm      160
16. Deadly Samarra      189
17. The Final Days of a City-State      195
18. The Fall of Fallujah      210

Notes      227
Index      229