[Ed. – What happens when the U.S. has no strategy and dithers around.]
Islamic State fighters seized the government compound in the city of Ramadi on Friday and edged closer to what would be their biggest victory in Iraq this year, officials said.
The loss of the capital of Anbar province, which Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi had said would be the next target of government forces after wresting back Tikrit last month, would be a major setback.
The government stressed that Ramadi had not fallen yet and announced that a major counter-offensive was under way as Abadi held an emergency meeting with top security officials. …
The jihadists seized the government complex at around 2:00 pm (1100 GMT) and raised the black flag, a police officer said, giving them nearly full control over Anbar’s capital.
IS “now occupies the government centre in Ramadi and has also raised its flag over the police HQ for Anbar”, the police major told AFP, speaking on condition of anonymity. …
A senior tribal leader in charge of the coordination of local fighters with regular government forces also confirmed the government complex had fallen.
“The only (government) forces still fighting are confined to a few pockets in Ramadi but they have no command post any more,” Sheikh Hekmat Suleiman told AFP by phone.