In this Monday, Sept. 4, 2017 photo, a Rohingya man holds up a cell phone displaying an image of 25-year-old Jarullah and his 21-year-old wife Ayesha Bibi near Cox's Bazar's Tumbru area, Bangladesh. (AP Photo/Bernat Armangue)
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Notorious for its scorched-earth counter-insurgency tactics, Myanmar's army – the Tatmadaw – responded with predictable ferocity.Analysts say those ambushes, which struck more than 30 places, were a tactical failure – the militants appeared to suffer heavy casualties and did not capture a significant number of guns.Statements by Myanmar authorities in the last two weeks describe ARSA fielding upward of 150 fighters during dozens of skirmishes.According to statements and photos released by Myanmar's army, the militants use primitive weapons, including gunpowder rifles, homemade guns and bombs, as well as clubs and swords.In contrast, Myanmar's army is one of the best funded in Asia. Myanmar says it has killed around 400 Rohingya fighters and lost just 15 personnel since Aug. 25 – although the army often plays down its casualties.Its most visible face is on-the-ground commander Ata Ullah.Ata Ullah starts his statements with Islamic greetings.In interviews, Ata Ullah has rejected the terrorist label and said his group does not target civilians.But Myanmar says the group has murdered Buddhist civilians.
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