Men In Black
August 9, 2004 6:52 AM   Subscribe

Men In Black
CNN, Aug 4: Clashes between police and insurgents in the northern city of Mosul left 12 Iraqis dead and 26 wounded, hospital and police sources said Wednesday. Rifle and rocket-propelled grenade fire as well as explosions were heard in the streets of the city.
A first-hand view of events.
posted by bonehead (8 comments total)
Noted here, not much further down the front page in the post on Najaf. Do you actually read this site?

Re that poor fucker in Iraq: I hope he gets home in one piece.
posted by dmt at 7:57 AM on August 9, 2004

Wow.... I do not support the war and think we would be better off pulling all troops out of israel and the middle east and shitting a brick for 10 or 15 years while we tried to figure out how to replace oil than install ourselves in this political quagmire...

but my hat is off, reminds me much of reading red badge of courage, although the ak's and rpgs are probably a whole shit load scarier.
posted by sourbrew at 9:17 AM on August 9, 2004


"At one time I had to reload the 50 with ammo. The ammo was on the outside of the vehicle on the side. Why they fucking they put it there I don't know. [...] as my Plt Sgt layed down some suppressive fire, I got up out of the hatch, got my whole body completely outside of the vehicle and went over to where the extra ammo was, grabbed a full ammo box, and went back to the hatch, as fast as possible."
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 9:30 AM on August 9, 2004

Hauntingly familiar to Mogadishu. Maybe the guys in black have been watching BlackHawk Down as a training film.
posted by a3matrix at 10:08 AM on August 9, 2004

Not to derail, a3 (or seem hostile), but there are some key differences between this and Somalia. The situation there involved a Black Hawk brought down by grenade fire in order to create an ambush situation. The US contingent in Somalia had Humvees and 6x6 trucks, which they were using to arrest Aidid functionaries (hopefully maybe Aidid himself). There was no US armor on the ground, and there was no air support available other than the Black Hawks, which were primarily allocated to transporting the Delta Force troops in and evacuating them. Notably, the pinned troops were on foot, and the essentially unarmored column attempting to rescue them suffered heavy casualties before UN troops in APCs were able to break through that dawn. In a general sense, neither the Delta Force SOF nor the Army Rangers supporting them were trained for these police-type operations amid a chaotic peacekeeping environment. Additionally, they were caught unawares by proto-Qaeda plans to ship specially-modified RPGs into the combat zone and use them for this explicit tactical purpose.

The Stryker brigade in this story, however, has not only had months of training prior to deployment, directed primarily at the variety of missions they would encounter, but also uses the innovative armored personnel carriers for which they're named. (To date Stryker units have suffered just one onboard KIA and two vehicles lost to enemy fire. They seem to be performing roughly on par with expectations.) Additionally there is clearly a full spectrum of support available including air and artillery operations.

Ultimately it's basic military tactics when facing a superior force to draw that force out of its base and into an ambush situation. Clearly the bridge activity was a diversion and the firefight this battalion drove into was the main dish. They may be studying BHD, but it's not going to teach them much; the US military has spent years absorbing the lessons of that battle and making MOUT (military operations in urban terrain) central to infantry training.

But when the bullets are flying, I'm sure it's just as blood-draining.
posted by dhartung at 11:35 PM on August 9, 2004

Noted here, not much further down the front page in the post on Najaf. Do you actually read this site?

Completely uncalled for. Not everybody reads every thread, and some things which are posted within threads are worthy of a front page post. This being one of them.
posted by Summer at 3:11 AM on August 10, 2004

But when the bullets are flying, I'm sure it's just as blood-draining.

But it's beautiful. A round on me at halftime.
posted by crasspastor at 3:33 AM on August 10, 2004

Completely uncalled for.

Oh come on. On reflection it could have been more sensitivly put (mea culpa; apologies to you bonehead) but if you're posting about a blog intimatly tied to current news then surely a search for the principal operators should be par for the course?
posted by dmt at 12:37 PM on August 10, 2004

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