StrategyPage.com has published a couple of emails it received about a battle that happened during the fight for Baghdad against Syrian Jihadists to control critical road junctions.
I can't tell the story of this fight in an email. It will take me at least an Infantry Magazine article, maybe a series of articles. The enemy at CURLEY turned out to be fanatical Syrian Jihadists, determined to die. They attacked incessantly for 12-14 hours, firing small arms and RPGs from buildings, trenches, bunkers, and rubble along side the cloverleaf intersection. They "charged" the US positions (the only word that fits), in taxis, cars, trucks with heavy machine guns mounted, and even in motorcycles with recoilless rifles tied to the side cars (not a war story, I saw one of them that the battalion captured). They drove cars loaded with explosives at high speed towards the US positions, hoping to take American with them in death when they exploded. The mortar platoon occupied the southern part of the objective with two tubes aimed north and two aimed south. They fired simultaneous indirect fire missions south and north, while the gunners on the .50 caliber machine guns fired direct fire to defend their positions. The mortar men continued to fire missions even while under ground assault and indirect fire. They fired over 20 direct lay missions against buildings housing enemy forces and against "Technical Vehicles" firing against the position.
Objectives code named CURLEY, LARRY and MOE were large coverleaf highway intersections which were the scene of a couple of days of fierce fighting. The second letter details how a platoon leader narrowly escaped death at the hands of a couple of T-72 tanks.
|Share |||By Randall Parker at 2003 June 10 02:21 PM Military War, Rumours Of War|