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Islamic insurgents continue blows against fragile Iraqi government

Islamic insurgents landed more blows against the fragile Iraqi government on Saturday.

They expanded  their offensive and captured three more strategic towns.

Jihadists opponents are massing their forces, and are ready to counterattack.

The entire country is under siege, with twenty-thousand defiant Shia fighters parading through Baghdad.
Assault rifles, machine guns, and rocket launchers are at the ready, vowing to take on the Sunni
uprising.

This is their growing response to ISIS, the al-Qaeda inspired Jihadists, who today, added to their already sweeping victories.
 
They advanced on two more towns, and opened up the Euphrates valley leading to Baghdad.
An entire brigade of Iraqi soldiers was killed.

Just north of Baghdad, some of Iraq's best-trained soldiers are locked in a fight to maintain control of the country's biggest oil refinery.
They are surrounded by militants intent on winning the crucial economic prize for themselves.

The US wants to stop this from escalating, but is limiting its own involvement.
 U.S. officials are meeting with Iraqi officials, and are sending in up to three hundred military advisers to assist.

The violence is driving a growing humanitarian crisis. Thousands more are forced from their homes each day.

Angry Kurds are dumping burning tires and garbage into streets to protest gas shortages, which were caused supply routes being cut off.
That's also sending food prices through the roof, and some life-saving medications are now in short supply. 

The conflict is taking an increasing toll on the Iraqi people with no relief in sight.