By John Lee.
The BBC's Jim Muir has reported from the front lines at Bakarta in the Kurdish region of Iraq, where Kurdish Peshmerga troops have retaken villages lost to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).
Interestingly, Muir reports from a hill on the front lines that the Kurds seized from ISIL, apparently without US air support. US aircraft and drones have been mostly targeting areas around the Mosul dam and Sinjar.
A Kurdish commander put the new success down to using a variety of new tactics against the terror group.
If Peshmerga forces have made advances against ISIL without US air support it would not be out of the ordinary. In Syria, Kurdish fighters aligned to the YPG group have kept ISIL at bay for some time, and some of this experience is almost certainly being transferred from the Syrian front to Iraq.
(Militia image via Shutterstock)