ABC News: U.S. Launches Second Phase in Fallujah
About "Phase 2" . . . This ABC story and this Yahoo News story, both from the AP, mention Phase 2 of the Fallujah battle, but both have no quotes from military personnel saying it is "Phase 2." In fact, I cannot find a quote that this is phase 2 beginning. Let's assume it does come from a US military spokesman though. What can this tell us? In planning a campaign, the first division of tasks is into phases. The next division is into stages. I've posted several times that I think this is a three-phase battle in Fallujah, 1. Shaping the Battlespace 2. Ground Assault 3. Exploitation, Reconstruction, Installation of Government, and that we are currently in Phase 2, Ground Assault. If a military spokesman has said Phase 2 starts today, that means that I am off a little in the scope of the planning, not the overall sequence of events. If Phase 2 is starting today, that means that: Phase 1 has ended. Phase 1 probably consisted of many Stages, with letter designators: A, B, C. So shaping the battlefield was a smaller task than if it required its own phase, and was instead a stage of Phase 1. Same with the initial ground assault. it would be very interesting to know what the triggers were for calling Phase 2: could be capture of key terrain, teh convergence and link-up of two units (like the Army Cav regiment and one of the RCTs -- they've kind of been doing an L-shaped attack), etc. One of the things that Phase changes can mean is a change in boundaries. This is probably the case here, as reports that US forces have crossed Highway 10 running through central Fallujah indicate a possible boundary shift. What is more significant is that the Phase change happens after the vast majority of the city has been picked over. This could indicate that the next stage in this phase will involve both reconstruction, etc very rapidly in Fallujah, and assaults in other cities.