Mosul, Iraq, was one of the first cities that ISIS captured in its reign of terror. Now, in a rare sign of unity, a coalition of government forces and local groups (including Christians, Kurds, and Shia) are pushing to reclaim one of the terrorist group's final strongholds.

ISIS fighters in Mosul are outnumbered

One of the major things the Iraqi coalition has going for it is sheer numbers. There are currently 108,500 fighters on the Iraqi side compared to 5,000 ISIS fighters, many of which are fleeing according to reports from the front.

More importantly, Iraqi forces have come prepared for a fight. This isn't like the time ISIS took Mosul where the government forces were in disarray, some of whom, particularly Sunni Muslims who felt disaffected by the Iraqi government's policies that were designed to punish them for the actions of Saddam Hussein defected to the terrorist group. They came to fight.

The fighters consist largely of Iraqi security special forces, a small amount of U.S.

air support and tactical adviser, Kurdish fighters (called peshmerga) and militias of Christians and other religious minorities who have been persecuted by ISIS. Though they come from different backgrounds, they all intend to drive ISIS out of Mosul by any means necessary. It is one of the first operations of its kind in Iraq's history.

ISIS is prepared to fight for Mosul

Though the operation is progressing faster than expected according to officials.

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it's still not going to be easy to retake MosulISIS has laid bombs all over the areas leading into the city and villages surrounding it. They have also resorted to suicide bombing by driving trucks loaded with explosives into coalition positions. Most of these failed. Though one American serviceman has been reported dead.

A Twitter account called Mosul Eye is reporting that ISIS is digging in. The terrorist group is demanding SIM cards and has been moving POWs to military targets as hostages. They've been destroying government buildings in Mosul and have been recruiting foreign fighters.

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