Ramadi City Rumor Spreads, Says ‘300 Marines’ Trapped at al-Asad Air Base
But a rumor that was being spread on social media sites and several blogs said “300 Marines” were “trapped” at a nearby base, and it said Iraqi officials lost contact with them. Another rumor claimed that Ramadi city, located about 50 miles from al-Baghdadi was also taken, but that hasn’t been confirmed either.
Mainstream news outlets have not reported on 300 Marines–or any U.S. soldiers in Iraq–being “trapped” by ISIS, or the Islamic State, which is also known as ISIL.
Reuters notes that ISIS is “threatening an air base where U.S. Marines are training Iraqi troops.”
“Al-Baghdadi, about 85 km (50 miles) northwest of Ramadi in Anbar province, had been besieged for months by the radical Sunni Islamist militants who captured vast swathes of northern and western Iraq last year,” said the report.
A Google Maps screenshot shows
A Google Maps screenshot shows al-Baghadi and the Asad Air Base. (Google Maps)
Naji Arak, a district manager, told Reuters that about 90 percent “of al-Baghdadi district has fallen under the control of the insurgents.”
The Marines are stationed at the Ain al-Asad base (also known as Ain Assad Air Base, as seen above in the map). The insurgents attacked base, but they were unable to break it. The base is located about 3 miles south of the town.
Pentagon spokeswoman Navy Commander Elissa Smith told Reuters confirmed there was fighting in al-Baghdadi, but it didn’t spread to the base. “There were reports of ineffective indirect fire in the vicinity of the base,” she said.