U.S. Believes Iraq Resistance Set Up Before War

As the CIA continues to interrogate Saddam Hussein (search) in captivity, the U.S. military is getting a much clearer intelligence picture of the resistance that has been launching attacks against coalition forces and the Iraqis working with them, officials told Fox News Wednesday.

And guerrilla leaders may be robbing banks to replenish their dwindling money supply, officials said.

• Photo Essay: Saddam Hussein Captured

The resistance is also showing signs of central planning by former Saddam regime officials, senior U.S. military officials said.

In Baghdad, guerrillas ambushed a U.S. military patrol with small arms fire, killing one soldier from the 1st Armored Division (searchand injuring another, the military said.

The soldier was the first killed in hostile action since Saddam was captured on Saturday and brings the number of U.S. soldiers killed in combat to 314.

Some 144 died of non-hostile causes, according to the Pentagon. A soldier assigned to the 101st Airborne Division (search(Air Assault) was killed Tuesday in a vehicle accident southwest of Mosul, Iraq.

Gen. John Abizaid (search), chief of the U.S. Central Command, told Fox News' Bret Baier -- who is traveling withGen. Richard Myers (search), chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, in Iraq -- that U.S. forces are initiating new raids against the opposition every day and are starting to understand the structure of terrorist cells in Iraq.

Forces believe the network was developed by Iraqi intelligence before the war.

"The former regime elements using the covert structure that existed within the Baath Party and the Iraqi intelligence service ... those structures are the structures that give the enemies strength and those are the structures we continue to take down," Abizaid told Fox News.

"The key to fighting any insurgency is to isolate the enemy" by taking away the resistance movement's money, leadership and ammunition, he said.

"Every raid we make, we understand better how the enemy functions," Abizaid said. But "the loss of Saddam Hussein is a key psychological blow and will have great benefits over time."

In Wednesday's raid in Samarra, dubbed Operation Ivy Blizzard, at least a dozen people were detained. It's thought that Samarra has a core of about 1,500 fighters. At least 73 were rounded up on Tuesday, including a suspected local Fedayeen leader, Qais Hattam.

"You notice in the country there have been several interesting attempts to rob banks lately," Abizaid told Fox News. "I don't want to jump to conclusions but I believe money is starting to dry up in the resistance, because we are starting to understand where the money is coming from, not only internally but externally."

Some of the new information came from a briefcase found on Saddam when U.S. troops took him into custody over the weekend.

It's believed that there are eight cells still operating in Baghdad and a few thousand enemy fighters remaining, but only a few hundred hardcore fighters left. In the Sunni Muslim areas north of Baghdad, Col. Frederick Rudesheim of the U.S. Army's 4th Infantry Division (search) said the insurgency seemed to consist of "very small" cells under the control of "a few individuals."

"Although a few individuals that are in control, over time, can exert control over this decentralized cellular structure," Rudesheim said.

Shadowy Leaders Coordinating Strikes

It's believed that former regime officials are coordinating strikes hundreds of miles apart and providing cash and bomb-making expertise to guerrilla cells, a senior U.S. military official told The Associated Press Wednesday.

In some cases, "signature bombs" are used, the source said.

"We doubt individual cells would have the capability themselves to do that. They're just too much alike," the official said.

The overseers maintain communications with cells made up of a core of about 5,000 anti-U.S. guerrillas who have recruited thousands of part-time fighters from Iraq's mosques, and unemployed and angry citizens, the official said.

There seems to be no signs of a strict command-and-control hierarchy, the official said, but dozens of cells have received some guidance.

"It isn't just one or two individuals who are saying, 'On Friday, this particular cell in Baghdad, you're directed to do this operation.' That would be a real exception to the rule," the official said. "I'd expect it to be more along the lines of, 'These are the kinds of things we want to encourage you to do over the next two weeks.'"

Guerrilla leadership also offers the rebels "goods and services" from a pool of cash and expertise, which can be seen in the similarities in the attacks taking place in various cities.

'We're Still Trying to Figure Him Out'

Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld put the CIA in charge of interrogating Saddam, who, according to Iraqi Governing Council members, is being held in Baghdad.

Interrogators reportedly were showing the deposed leader videotapes of rallies, prisoners being tortured and executed and of the unearthing of mass graves his regime created to provoke him into making unguarded statements.

But government officials told Fox News that it's not likely that time would be spent this early in the interrogation on gathering Saddam's reactions to videos.

"Even if we had managed to keep him awake the whole time, there may be no way we would have been able to ask all those things in the three or four days we've had him," one intelligence source said.

Instead, interrogators are focusing on key questions about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction, missing Navy pilot Michael Scott Speicher and Iraq's alleged links to Al Qaeda. Saddam told his captors that Iraq disposed of its weapons long ago, said he knows nothing of Speicher's fate and that Iraq has no ties to Al Qaeda.

One defense source told Fox News that Saddam's answers are the exact same answers as other detained regime members' and seem scripted.

Additionally, the CIA and others still have no formal method of proceeding with their questioning of Saddam.

"Some of the reporting suggests we have a grand strategy that is more structured and formal than the questioning really has been," one source told Fox News. "That isn't the case. We're still trying to figure him out."

That means interrogators are looking for any sort of body language or slip of the tongue that may provide a hint. Psychological tactics likely will be employed later to get Saddam to reveal something unknowingly.

"We can make them [Saddam and other regime members] listen to rap music 24 hours a day until he absolutely goes out of his mind," former CIA operative Wayne Simmons told Fox News. "The key is, we don't want to go that way," but interrogators will want to establish a personal relationship with Saddam to make sure he responds to questions and, among other things, make sure at least one interrogator is fluent in Arabic.

And "when he lies, they'll start cataloging everything he does," Simmons said.

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., said whether Saddam talks or not, he shouldn't be allowed to negotiate for leniency.

"The magnitude of the crimes that this despot, this despicable character, has committed warrant the ultimate penalty in my view, and to give him anything less in exchange for information would not be appropriate," McCain said in a television interview Wednesday.

Fox News' Bret Baier, Rick Leventhal, Ian McCaleb, Liza Porteus and The Associated Press contributed to this report.