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Alessio Vinci: Marines prevent regrouping

CNN's Alessio Vinci
CNN's Alessio Vinci

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•  Commanders: U.S. | Iraq
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CENTRAL IRAQ (CNN) CNN correspondent Alessio Vinci is embedded with the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force. He spoke with CNN anchor Bill Hemmer Saturday about the fighting south of Baghdad.

HEMMER: Alessio Vinci -- if you can give us where you are and what's happening.

VINCI: Hello to you. The news is the other Marines unit and the (U.S.) Army is, indeed, inside Baghdad ... has come through here.

Most of them, of course, are glad about the fact the Marines are there. They are also talking about when they may be going home. U.S. commanders are trying to make sure the Marines here understand the war is not over yet, that it is business as usual.

Indeed, we are seeing throughout the day the Marines going on routine patrols in central Iraq, because of course we understand, the Marines understand, there are still pockets of resistance throughout Iraq.

The job of the Marines here is to prevent those pockets of resistance from reorganizing themselves, to regroup and attack the Marines from the rear. The U.S. commanders here are very much concentrating, telling the troops that yes, it is good news for them that the troops are in Baghdad. But at the same time, they want to make sure the Marines understand the war is not over yet.

EDITOR'S NOTE: This report was written in accordance with Pentagon ground rules allowing so-called embedded reporting, in which journalists join deployed troops. Among the rules accepted by all participating news organizations is an agreement not to disclose sensitive operational details.

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