The Fourth Rail has a good visual that enables the viewer to track the progress made by coalition forces over the last year in its transition from "search and destroy" to "clear and hold missions." The visual illustrates pretty starkly that the number of towns being held by the coalition is expanding rapidly toward the Syrian border now that Iraqi combat troops are growing increasingly competent and available.
Of course, there may still be terrorist activity in towns that are under Iraqi military control, as there was recently in Ramadi, but these towns are no longer sanctuaries for terrorists. The bad guys know their range of operations is growing more and more restricted. They no doubt feel like a pig in the coils of a python. An apt simile, that.