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Friday, Apr 04, 2003


"As three U.S. combat divisions and assorted forces bear down on Baghdad, the big question of the war now is, how will U.S. troops take the Iraqi capital? This is a matter U.S. war planners pondered long before President Bush launched the war. Last summer, a secret team of high-level military officers and senior civilian Pentagon officials designed a tactical playbook for presentation to the Joint Chiefs of Staff "war-fighting group," a Pentagon outfit that oversees war plans. Titled "Joint Urban Operations," the report was developed by the team to study and enhance U.S. combat abilities in an urban environment. But a classified summary PowerPoint presentation of the study—made available to us by a source with access to the document—focused exclusively on one particular urban area: Baghdad. And this summary shows the various ways U.S. military planners considered conquering the city."