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Marine Killed by Small-Arms Fire; IED Kills Soldier in Iraq

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Nov. 7, 2005 – Two U.S. servicemembers were killed in Iraq on Nov. 6, military officials reported.

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Members of B Battery, 1st Battalion, 9th Field Artillery conduct a cordon-and-search operation Nov. 5 after an informant provided coalition forces with information on the location of a terrorist ring in east Baghdad. Photo by Capt. David Underwood, USA

(Click photo for screen-resolution image);high-resolution image available.

A Marine assigned to Regimental Combat Team 2, 2nd Marine Division, 2nd Marine Expeditionary Force (Forward), was killed by small-arms fire while conducting clearing operations Nov. 6 in Husaybah, Iraq.

Elsewhere, an improvised explosive device killed a soldier attached to Task Force Band of Brothers late Nov. 6 while on patrol near Dawr. Two other soldiers and an Iraqi translator were wounded in the attack and transported to a nearby military medical facility.

No further details were available. The names of the deceased are being withheld pending notification of family.

In other news from Iraq, combat operations led by Iraqi Interior Ministry forces continued Nov. 6 in eastern Baghdad.

Around 7:30 a.m., Iraqi police in Adhamiyah responded to a tip that an improvised explosive device had been placed near a school. U.S. military police received a report claiming that a grenade was discovered taped to a pole with detonating wire strung across the sidewalk.

Staff Sgt. Robert Stearns, a military police liaison with the Rusafa police station, said it appeared that the device was set to detonate as children left school. An Iraqi police explosives disposal team safely disposed of the device and searched for other explosives. Another grenade was discovered but had not yet been set to detonate. The Iraqi explosives team disposed of the second grenade.

"We don't know if the person who set the device was interrupted in what he was doing and just did not have time to arm it," Stearns said. "I think the person who provided the tip about the first grenade probably saved some innocent children today."

In a separate incident, elements of the Iraqi 3rd Public Order Brigade discovered a team of terrorists emplacing a roadside bomb along a road east of Salman Pak about 9:30 a.m. A firefight ensued, and one terrorist was killed. A search for the other escaped terrorist continued while an Iraqi explosives team safely disposed of the bomb.

U.S. soldiers also captured several other terrorists Nov. 5 based on tips from Iraqi citizens.

Task Force Baghdad soldiers from 1st Battalion, 9th Field Artillery, following a tip from an Iraqi citizen, detained four suspected terrorists during a raid in eastern Baghdad. The four suspects are thought to be part of a ring with ties to foreign terrorist groups planning attacks against coalition forces.

The Iraqi informant went along on the mission to positively identify the correct house for the search. No shots were fired, and the detainees have been processed into the Iraqi judicial system.

"There was resistance at the house. The suspects attempted to flee, but we handled it well," said Army 1st Lt. Clem Gover, a platoon leader in B Battery. "We did not have to fire our weapons, but we did have to tackle one guy who was trying to escape."

Members of the platoon had high praise for their platoon leader. "(Gover) played football in college, and he has trained us well on how to tackle the bad guys without injuring them or us," said Army Staff Sgt. Pedrus Helgenberger, the patrol's noncommissioned officer in charge.

Elsewhere, U.S. soldiers seized several weapons caches in operations spanning two days.

Soldiers from 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division also discovered a large weapons cache Nov. 4.

Members of D Company, 2nd Battalion, 502nd Infantry Regiment, found the cache during combat operations south of Baghdad International Airport. The search revealed more weapons and munitions in a total of 18 different caches before concluding early in the evening Nov. 5. Three terror suspects were detained for further questioning.

The weapons cache included 90 82 mm mortar shells, 40 hand grenades, 22 rocket-propelled-grenade rounds, eight RPG launchers, seven rockets, four 155 mm artillery rounds, four 60 mm mortar systems, three AK-47 assault rifles, two automatic grenade launchers, two mortar sights, two sacks of mortar-propellant charges, two pipe bombs, a 120 mm mortar round, a case of 7.62 mm ammunition, an improvised rocket launcher, 800 grams of TNT, 300 feet of detonation cord, bomb-making material, 25 ski masks, and four sets of body armor with protective plates.

An explosives ordnance disposal team later destroyed the cache through controlled detonations.

A platoon of U.S. soldiers setting up a checkpoint near Baqubah the evening of Nov. 5 discovered numerous weapons in a vehicle that tried to break out of the cordon set up around the checkpoint.

Soldiers fired several warning shots at the vehicle, causing its driver to swerve into a ditch. The two occupants escaped.

Among the items left behind in the vehicle were 13 fragmentary hand grenades, pressure detonating wires commonly used for construction of improvised explosive devices, and eight AK-47s with a large amount of ammunition. The vehicle was destroyed after the weapons were removed to prevent it from being used again for terrorist activities.

In the skies over Iraq, coalition aircraft flew 50 close-air-support and armed-reconnaissance sorties Nov. 6 for Operation Iraqi Freedom. These missions included support to coalition troops, infrastructure protection, reconstruction activities, and operations to deter and disrupt terrorist activities. Coalition aircraft also supported Iraqi and coalition ground forces operations to create a secure environment for ongoing Transitional National Assembly meetings.

U.S. Air Force F-16s and U.S. Navy F-14s provided close-air support to coalition troops in contact with anti-Iraqi forces near Qaim, Balad, and Tal Afar. The F-16s and F-14s expended precision-guided bombs in Qaim. Eight Air Force and Navy intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft also flew missions in support of operations in Iraq. U.S. Air Force and British Royal Air Force fighter aircraft performed in a nontraditional ISR role with their electro-optical and infrared sensors.

(Compiled from Multinational Force Iraq, Task Force Baghdad and U.S. Central Command Air Forces Forward news releases.)

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Related Sites:
Multinational Force Iraq
U.S. Central Command Air Forces

Click photo for screen-resolution imageSoldiers of D Company, 2nd Battalion 502nd Infantry Regiment, showcase some of the munitions and other items found south of the Baghdad International Airport. Nov. 4. Army photo  
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