INTRODUCTION: The heavy fighting in the gulf war between Iraq and Iran, which flared up again with the Iranian counter-offensive launched early this month, has brought conflict to the central sector of the border.
GILAN-E-GARB & KERMANSHAH, IRAN (VISNEWS - MAHMOUD OSKOUI)
GV Iranian soldiers standing outside bunker
TV Soldiers fraternising. Soldier praying (3 SHOTS)
GV Soldiers preparing ammunition
TV Truck with supplies, and soldiers unloading. (2 SHOTS)
GV Soldiers with guns over shoulders moving down hillside
SV Hospital; wounded Iranians being treated
SV Wounded leg being treated by nurse
SV Iranian civilians giving blood (3 SHOTS)
GV Cemetery with mourners wailing (2 SHOTS)
Background: INTRODUCTION: The heavy fighting in the gulf war between Iraq and Iran, which flared up again with the Iranian counter-offensive launched early this month, has brought conflict to the central sector of the border. Both sides have admitted that the occupying Iraqi army has mounted a counter-attack around the mountains of Gilan-e-Garb, although very differing accounts of the fighting are being released.
SYNOPSIS: According to Radio Teheran, these Iranian troops are driving the Iraqis back in to the mountains of Gilan-e-Garb. And they say they killed 200 Iraqis in the process. But, while the Iranian troops involve Allah for their war effort, the Iraqis claim they have killed almost 100 Iranians as they continue to break through enemy position. The Iraqi counter-offensive was mounted on December the 19th, after a sustained Iranian assault in the central and southern sectors of the fighter, which has seen advances around Korramshahr and Bostan.
After a more than a year of fighting, the Iranians are having problems resupplying their troops. Most of their equipment is American-made, purchased by the Shah. Since the revolution, they have found it almost impossible to get spare parts. The Iraqis have found arms easier to come by. But they have been reluctant to commit their entire armed strength to a war of attrition.
A few kilometres away in Kermanshah, the Iranians are treating their wounded. There are no independent witness tallying the wounded, with both sides reporting bloody battles in the area. Some of the heaviest casualties occurred after Iraqi jet fighters strafed the Gilan-e-Garb zone.
One of the sacrifices Iranian civilians are expected to make is giving blood. Ayatollah Khomeini has steeled his people to long conflict, vowing no peace negotiations until the last Iraqi soldier is removed from Iranian soil. President Saddam Hussein of Iraq has offered peace if Iraqi sovereignty is respected, But that entails control of the Shatt-al-Arab waterway; the ostensible cause of war, and it is something the Iranians will not code.
The Ayatollah calls Iranian victims the martyrs of Islam., and relatives loudly mourn their dead. The Iranians cannot consider offering relatives such ample compensation as the Iraqis, who give the family of each dead soldier a plot of land.
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