Just heard on my local radio that British forces are sounding very fustrated with the way things have been handled. I'll publish a link to the story soon.
From Sean Rayment, London; One senior officer said that America's aggressive methods were causing friction among allied commanders and that there was a growing sense of "unease and frustration" among the British high command. The officer, speaking on condition of anonymity, said part of the problem was that American troops viewed Iraqis as untermenschen - the Nazi expression for "sub-humans". and that is just the beginning, the article goes on; "The US troops view things in very simplistic terms. It seems hard for them to reconcile subtleties between who supports what and who doesn't in Iraq. It's easier for their soldiers to group all Iraqis as the bad guys. As far as they are concerned Iraq is bandit country and everybody is out to kill them." and finishes; The officer believed that America had now lost the military initiative in Iraq... TheTelegraph UK
The Age carries the same story; The officer explained that, under British military rules of war, British troops would never be given clearance to carry out attacks similar to those being conducted by the US military, in which helicopter gunships have been used on targets in urban areas.
As a result, the Daily Star reports a softer line;...US officials agreed to the cease-fire at the behest of their allies in Iraq who roundly criticized the military operation. (A softer line? Soft seems an incongruous word to be following mayhem with. Exhausted perhaps, or weary, or maybe even doubtful - but soft?).
Cease-fire ABC News Online uses plainer language; Iraq's interim Governing Council is calling for a nationwide cease-fire, including in Fallujah, hours before a temporary truce between US troops and insurgents is due to expire. In a statement after a session on the deteriorating security situation, the council calls for a "global cease-fire ... The US-installed council is calling for meetings with all political, tribal, religious leaders in Fallujah and Najaf.
And like a mouse on an exercise wheel, watching the rungs go by - doesn't this one look familiar? Another "kill or capture" mission was apparently being prepared last night.