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With Aid of Airstrikes, Iraqi Forces Ring Tikrit, Pentagon Says

Iraqi special forces on Thursday surrounded the city of Tikrit as U.S.-led coalition airstrikes worked to take out Islamic State targets. “They have Tikrit essentially encircled," said Pentagon spokesman Col. Steve Warren. "They are in pre-combat, ready-to-move positions around the city.” The Pentagon, which on Wednesday classified the offensive as “stalled,” is now eagerly supporting the battle. So what's the reason for the change? General Lloyd Austin, who oversees...

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