GI SPECIAL 3A98:
IN FLAMES: A local resident watches as
a US military truck burns in Baghdad on April 13. (REUTERS)
IRAQ WAR REPORTS
DURING COMBAT OPERATIONS IN RAMADI
April 13, 2005 U.S. Department of
Defense News Release Number: 05-04-14C
CAMP FALLUJAH, Iraq –
A U.S. Army Soldier serving with the 2nd Marine Division, II Marine
Expeditionary Force (Forward), was killed April 12 by enemy
small-arms fire while conducting combat operations in Ramadi.
The name of the deceased is being
withheld pending notification of next of kin.
Several U.S. Army
units are assigned to II Marine Expeditionary Force (Fwd) during
Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Soldier Killed By Sniper
April 13, 2005 Associated Press & U.S.
Department of Defense News Release No. 360-05
An Iowa National Guard soldier has
been killed by a sniper in Iraq.
Spc. John W.
Miller, 21, of West Burlington, Iowa, died April 12 in Camp Ramadi,
Iraq, of injuries received from enemy small arms fire while on route
clearance operations in Ar Ramadi, Iraq.
He was a member of
Company A 224th Battalion of Burlington.
Miller is survived by his father, two
brothers and a sister. His mother died four years ago.
Funeral arrangements are pending.
Fort Irwin Soldier
Dies From Burns
April 13, 2005 By SCOTT
SHACKFORD/Staff Writer, Daily Press
Pfc. Casey M.
LaWare, 19, of Fort Irwin's 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment, died in
Germany on Friday of burns he received in a guard tower fire in
LaWare, a resident of Redding since he
was a child, joined the Army just out of high school, his uncle,
Brian Telford, said. According to Telford, LaWare had planned to
serve in the military for a few years and then go to college.
LaWare was evacuated to Germany to
treat his burns, Telford said. LaWare's condition deteriorated,
however, and he died before he could be flown to Texas for further
treatment, Telford said.
Soldiers from the 11th Armored Cavalry
Regiment deployed to Iraq from Fort Irwin in January and February.
LaWare marks the second fatality from
Fort Irwin during military duty in Iraq.
Iraq Attack Injures
04/13/2005 By Patty Yauger,
CONNELLSVILLE - An
attack by Iraqi insurgents on a patrol unit returning to the Ash
Sharqat camp, near Mosul, has left four local U.S. Army National
Guard soldiers injured.
public affairs officer Capt. Cory P. Angell said Tuesday that Spec.
Timothy Boots, Staff Sgt. Jason Leisey, Spec. Kevin Claycomb and
Staff Sgt. Mark A. Bowman were injured April 7 when their patrol
unit was returning to their base camp at the end of their mission
and was attacked by an explosive device.
Claycomb of Scottdale and Boots of
Connellsville are now at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in
Washington, D.C., while Leisey, of Lancaster, is being treated at
Fort Sam Houston in Texas.
Angell said the
three have been listed in "very serious" condition.
Bowman, added Angell, sustained a
non-serious injury. He is from Friedens.
The four soldiers are attached to
Company B, 1st Battalion, 103rd Armor unit based in Connellsville.
The unit was deployed to Iraq last year for a one year tour of duty.
The unit's commanding officer, Lt.
Col. Philip J. Logan, said that five armored Humvees carrying the
unit were about to enter the gate of the base camp when a car bomb
exploded and caused severe damage to the Army vehicle.
"The (armored Humvee) protected the
crew exactly as designed," said Logan. "However, four soldiers from
the patrol were wounded during the attack.
"Other soldiers from the patrol, at
great personal risk, immediately extracted the wounded personnel
from the burning vehicle, saving their lives."
Logan said that the injured soldiers
were stabilized at the scene and then evacuated to the Army Combat
Support Hospital at Mosul, Iraq, where they were initially treated.
Claycomb, Boots and Leisey were then taken to Landstuhl Regional
Medical Center in Germany before being transported to the U.S.
Bowman remains in the Mosul facility,
Unit Sgt. Arnold Perkins referred
detailed questions to National Guard officials at Fort Indiantown
Gap, but said that he was "very saddened" when he heard the news
concerning the soldiers.
"I feel very bad for them and their
families," he said.
The 63-member unit is part of
approximately 1,000 Pennsylvania Army National Guardsmen now serving
Connellsville-based unit was activated in 2002 and was assigned to
U.S. military bases in Italy and Germany for a six-month tour of
duty. Two soldiers from the unit took part in a
NATO multinational peacekeeping force in Bosnia during the same time
Injured For Fifth Time
April 12, 2005 By Associated Press,
A decorated soldier
from Nampa, Idaho, was injured for the fifth time in combat last
week in Iraq.
Woodard was shot through the stomach and lost a portion of his
He went through two rounds of surgery
at a German hospital.
joined the Army in 2002. His left arm has been injured three times
since. He was struck by shrapnel and hit with debris from a falling
wall. He also was struck by bullets in his chest and arm after
being shot by enemy fire in Fallujah. Protective gear saved his
incident, Woodard and a handful of other soldiers rescued people
after a building caught on fire. He eventually collapsed from
inhaling too much smoke.
Targeted In Mosul Attacks:
Information Not Released
blew up in two different parts of Mosul, targeting U.S. forces and
Iraqi police. There was no information on possible U.S. casualties.
DoD Convoy Hit,
Four Mercenaries Wounded
4.13.05 BAGHDAD (Reuters) & TRACI
CARL, Associated Press Writer
A car bomb exploded
near a U.S. convoy outside Baghdad's heavily fortified Green Zone on
the capital's infamous airport road on Wednesday, killing five
Iraqis and wounding four American contractors, the U.S. military
The bomb exploded
as a Defence Department convoy carrying civilian workers left the
Green Zone, centre for U.S. operations in Iraq, at
about 9:30 a.m., said military spokesman Chief Petty Officer James
car bombing damaged two sport utility vehicles and five civilian
cars. The explosion left charred and burning
rubble strewn across the highway.
U.S. Fuel Supply Convoy In Baghdad
4.13.05 Iraqis attempt to put out the
flames as a US military tanker burns after it was hit in a roadside
bombing in eastern Baghdad. (AFP/Sabah Arar)
April 13, 2005 Associated Press &
(Reuters) & AFP
Insurgents hit an
American fuel-supply convoy Wednesday in the Iraqi capital,
witnesses said, leaving a tanker truck engulfed in flames that sent
smoke rising high over the city as the second
high-level American official visited in as many days.
Twin blasts from
roadside bombs targeted the convoy of two U.S. Humvees and an
American military fuel tanker as it made its way
through an eastern Baghdad neighborhood, witnesses at the scene
said, as the truck burned violently and sent up a large plume of
black smoke visible across Baghdad.
The truck was hit at 8:45 am (0445
GMT) in a convoy on al-Kanat road which cuts through eastern Baghdad
and borders the Shiite slum of Sadr City, an interior ministry
immediately clear if there were any casualties.
Two More U.S.
Convoys Hit In Baghdad;
A car bomb blast near a U.S. military
convoy on Wednesday seriously wounded four civilians.
The convoy, which included Iraqi
National Guard troops, was hit near al-Amiriya, in western Baghdad,
an Iraqi National Guard source said at the scene.
The blast destroyed
a U.S. Army Humvee vehicle and civilian cars, according to a Reuters
witness. The injured were evacuated by U.S. helicopter.
struck U.S. convoys in other parts of the city.
An attack left an
American vehicle in flames in southeast Baghdad in the area near
several key ministries.
Wounded In Firefight;
Tells Of Camp
April 13, 2005 By CHRIS PUGH, The
A Massillon native returned fire
against insurgents Monday, defending a Marine barracks near the
Timothy Arnold, 25, a corporal with
the Third Battalion, Second Marines, India company, was injured in
the attack and told The Independent about the attack from his
He said he and his fellow Marines were
able to hold off about 20 insurgents with his group by killing and
driving back invaders until the attack was completed, he said.
“They were coming like ants on an
anthill,” Arnold said from the hospital in Balad, located 20 miles
north of Baghdad, where he lay injured from a concussion and hearing
But he said it was pure adrenaline
that kept him alive during the firefight between soldiers and
insurgents near the Iraq-Syrian border.
Arnold’s company is stationed near
Husaybah in Camp Gannon, which is located near Qaim in northwest
Iraq. The incident was reported through an Associated Press story
in Tuesday’s edition of The Independent.
In Iraq, Arnold is head of the unit,
which is responsible for seeking out insurgents.
He suffered a concussion, partial
hearing loss and minor bruises in the skirmish, which reportedly
began Monday when insurgents tried unsuccessfully to ram two cars
and a fire truck loaded with explosives into a Marine outpost
there. The vehicles exploded.
Arnold said he was
in the hallway of the barracks the Marines set up in former offices
of the Iraqi National Guard.
“The first vehicle
they drove rammed through a barricade and exploded 50 to 75 meters
away from us,” Arnold said. “The second was a fire truck that
exploded 100 meters away.”
The Marine said the
second blast hurt his head, but he was able to wake up the 11
Marines in his unit and went to the roof. What followed was a 30-45
minute firefight with insurgents on the roof, Arnold said.
“So much was going on,” he said.
“Hundreds of rounds were fired and it didn’t end until the
insurgents were killed or drawn out.”
Arnold added he was on the roof when
the third blast hit.
“I was dizzy,” he admitted. “But
adrenaline kept me going.”
The barracks sustained shrapnel
damage, he said.
After the battle
ended, the Marine said he was transported with two others to the
hospital in Balad.
“We never wanted to leave,” Arnold
said, adding he hoped to be released from the hospital and reunited
with his unit tonight. “I’m still a little dizzy today and feel
like a truck hit me.”
doctors told the Marine he had lost 60 percent hearing in his right
ear and a lesser amount in his left ear. Arnold hasn’t been told if
he’ll regain his hearing, although he said it was better Tuesday.
Arnold attended St. Mary’s School in
Massillon through the eighth grade and graduated from Sandy Valley
High in 1999.
He and his wife, Story, live in Camp
LeJeune in North Carolina. They have two children.
This has been Arnold’s fourth
deployment – his second in Iraq. He also served two stints in
U.S. Troops Shoot
April 13 (Xinhuanet)
In a separate
incident, US soldiers on a checkpoint near Dowr opened fire at a
civilian car, wounding Lie. Col. Hussein Ahmed and another
policeman, the statement said.
Brigade Attack British Intelligence Officers In Basra
April 13, 2005 By SITE Institute
In a communiqué issued April 13, 2005,
al-Hassan al-Basri Brigade detail a bombing operation aimed at
British intelligence officers in Basra, Iraq, this morning.
A “package of
explosives” was detonated on a car allegedly belonging to the
“military British intelligence.” According to the statement: “It’s
occupants were either killed or wounded.”
Marine Back Home
“He Didn't Think
His Son Would Be Deployed”
April 13, 2005 By APRIL STONE, Press
Staff Writer, OKOnline
Now that he's been home a few days,
U.S. Marine Lance Cpl. Jeff Hudgens has a suggestion. He thinks
Tahlequah needs a Hooter's restaurant.
He'll keep that in mind when he starts
back to college soon and earns a degree, possibly in business and
Jeff managed to squeeze in a semester
at Northeastern State University a year ago before beginning his
career in the Marines. After less than a year, that career took a
fateful turn, and he's lucky to be alive today. When he returns to
school this fall, the 19-year-old will stand out among his
classmates as a decorated war veteran.
It was never Jeff's
goal to go to war and face combat, but he always
dreamed of being in the military. Since he was a young boy and
watched the hit Tom Cruise film "Top Gun," he yearned to be a
pilot. But with a retired Marine for an uncle, and two cousins who
are Marines, he began leaning more toward that branch of the
Jeff's parents, Russell and Sandra
Hudgens, did what they could to keep him out of harm's way for as
long as possible. He was a senior in high school before his dad
even let him play football.
"I was afraid he would hurt," said
Russell, who moved his family to Tahlequah when Jeff was a
fourth-grader. "Parents are always worried about their kids getting
hurt, and then when you let them go, look what happens."
Jeff met with recruiters before he
graduated from Tahlequah High School in 2003. But since he hadn't
yet turned 18, and wouldn't for a few more months, he had to ask his
parents for permission to enlist.
The war in Iraq was
well under way by then, but Russell said he didn't think his son
would be deployed when he gave his permission.
"I was obvious that
Jeff was going to enlist, whether we let him or not. He would've
waited to turn 18 and done it on his own, and then been mad at us,"
said Russell. "To be honest, I thought (the war) would be over by
the time he got through with all of his training. But after three
months of basic training and two months of specialty training, he
Jeff himself wasn't surprised to learn
of his deployment date, because his company sergeant told him and
the other troops it was not a question of "if" they would go, but
"when." The day Jeff arrived in Iraq wasn't significant enough for
him to remember, but the day he left the battlefield with
life-threatening injuries is one he and his parents will never
After spending the past 150 days or so
in three different hospitals, Jeff is glad to finally be back home.
Sitting on the couch in his parents' house Monday afternoon, he
could recall everything about his stay in Iraq, up until the moment
of the explosion that changed his future from the "average Marine"
he dubbed himself.
"We were using the anti-tank missile;
it's still infantry, but you don't do too much walking. We were
riding around mostly," said Jeff, who served with the 1st Battalion
23rd Marines weapons company, stationed in Haditha in Northern Iraq.
"We went out at night all the time, primarily doing patrols.
Basically, I was a cop in camo; that's what it felt like."
The roads were laced with explosives,
and Jeff's company had the job of rooting out any bombs they could
find. On Nov. 18, 2004, Jeff
witnessed three vehicles explode as they passed over the hidden
devices. Although no one died that day, he and his comrades felt the
first tinges of fear when they had to turn back toward their base.
"One guy thought he was deaf from one
of the explosions, so we went back to have him checked out," said
Jeff. "They said he could still hear, so they sent him back out
Not long after the
unit returned to patrol, Jeff remembers looking down over the side
of the truck in which he was riding. What happened next he would
hear about much later, once he regained consciousness.
"We were just out
on regular patrol that day, and I remember looking over the side of
the truck, and I saw dust fly up," said Jeff.
Behind the dust was shrapnel from the
bomb they triggered, and it struck Jeff hard enough to knock the
helmet off his head. Jeff was rushed to a nearby military hospital
in Iraq, and then transported to Germany, where doctors weren't sure
he would survive, much less recover.
That same day in Tahlequah, Russell's
cell phone was ringing, and Sandra was contacted with news that her
son was injured, but alive.
"We actually knew
by the afternoon on (November) 18th; we were told he had head
trauma, but we didn't hear much more. We knew he was still alive,"
said Russell, a science teacher at Tahlequah Junior High School.
"They called us from Broken Arrow to keep us updated, but for a
while, they had no bad news, and no new news."
Since he wasn't
sure how to react, the only thing Russell knew to do was go to work.
"The very next day, I thought I'd go
crazy, sitting around waiting and not knowing anything, so I went
ahead and went to class," said Russell. "I don't remember a lot
about that day, but I do recall that I didn't have trouble from
anyone that day. The kids were so sweet. I probably looked freaked
out, and they knew to behave."
His students were acquainted with Jeff
from his occasional work as his dad's substitute teacher, and they
often asked about the soldier's condition.
"We didn't talk about it all the time,
just when it was appropriate, and when the kids had questions," said
Russell. "A lot of the kids know Jeff from the classroom, so they
were interested in how he was."
Sandra's co-workers in the NSU
Business Office were just as sympathetic to her motherly need to be
by her son's side. When the Marine Corps arranged their trip to
Washington, D.C., no one needed any explanations from her or
Russell. Jeff's younger brother, Grant, 17, and little sister
Mallory, 13, are happy to have him back home. But Russell is afraid
that Jeff's experience won't hinder Grant's desire to join the
Marines after he graduates from high school.
"Grant has already
said he is going to go into the Marine Corps. But you never know.
When he finishes school, he will be 18, so he has time to change his
mind," said Russell. "But our daughter has already promised that she
will not be joining the military."
Everyone is invited to join in the
"Welcome Home" celebration for U.S. Marine Lance Cpl. Jeff Hudgens
at noon Saturday, April 23, at Cherokee Landing on Lake Tenkiller.
Jeff's parents, Russell and Sandra Hudgens, will host the event in
their son's honor, and will use the opportunity to thank the
community for all the support they have received since their son was
injured during a tour of duty in Iraq.
Marine's Twin Loses
Leg In Iraq
(April 14, 2005)
By Lance Cpl. Darhonda V. Hall, MCRD/ERR PARRIS
"I asked my senior drill instructor
three questions before I made the phone call.
'Is there something wrong with my
'Is he dead?'
“I forced down tears and asked if his
body was still intact ... he told me he didn't know and that we
would find that out today."
Days before Pfc. Ryan Rice went
through the Crucible, an essential training aspect of recruit
training, he and his senior drill instructor, Staff Sgt. Jorge
Melendez, received word that Rice's fraternal twin brother had been
involved in a land mine explosion while in Iraq and was injured in
the midst of the explosion.
His brother had his left leg amputated
9 inches below the knee and received pieces of shrapnel to his left
eye and right arm.
"I cried," Ryan said with a choked
voice. "I cried and I prayed."
Ryan's brother, Lance Cpl. Aaron Rice,
a reserve artilleryman, had gone through recruit training a year
earlier than him and graduated in April 2004. Aaron enlisted in the
Marine Corps Reserves with the military occupational specialty of
field artillery and was stationed in Mississippi with a reserve
The unit was slated to deploy in
January, the same month in which Ryan would be shipped off to
"We didn't join together because we
were in different states of mind," said Aaron. "I told him that if
he wanted to go ... just go, and I would decide want I wanted to do
later," agreed Ryan.
The twins were in college when Aaron
chose to enlist in the Marine Corps.
"Before I left, I told (Ryan) that he
would want to do the same thing as me," Aaron joked lightly.
Weeks after Aaron graduated from
Marine Combat Training and his military occupational specialty
school, his unit was slated to deploy to Iraq.
Aaron was sent to
Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center Twentynine Palms, Calif., for
six weeks of training and from there, was shipped off to Iraq March
2. Sixteen days after his arrival in Iraq, Aaron experienced combat
action from an enemy land mine.
"There was a lot of
activity all morning," Aaron explained. "Kilo Company had gotten
Ryan's eyes watered as he listened
closely to his brother's story.
"Our unit went on a
Personal Security Detail with the battalion sergeant major and the
executive officer. We drove off the road and tried to stay in each
vehicle's tracks. I was the driver of my vehicle, and somehow, we
got slightly off of the tracks in front of us."
Aaron held his breath and shook
nervously as he continued with his story.
"There was no warning ... we heard a
giant 'boom!' and the next thing I remember was that I was on the
ground. My first instinct was to check my legs."
"When I looked down, my left boot was
in my lap and I thought, 'Oh Lord, please let me keep at least one
of my legs.' I looked to my right and saw my right leg underneath
Aaron explained that the mine hit
directly under the vehicle's front driver side tire. "I heard my
platoon sergeant yell, 'Incoming!' and then another sergeant yelled,
'Rice is hit, Rice is hit.' As soon as the sergeant said I was hit,
Lance Cpl. Corbin, I thank God for him everyday, reached under my
arms and grabbed me. He pulled me from under the vehicle."
Aaron said that his fellow Marines had
already cleared a building and provided security for it.
"I really appreciate how quickly the
unit responded and radioed for a [Medical evacuation]."
“He's Not Eager To
04/12/05 WTVO Lanark, Illinois
Spc. Ryan Hubbard is spending a lot of
time resting at home in Lanark.
He was injured three weeks ago in Iraq while serving as a security
escort for a convoy headed into a war zone. [This has to be the
reporters’ opinion. The whole country is a war zone.]
"It came over the
radio that they were getting small arms fire along with it," Hubbard
says. "So I moved up and got into position where we were trained to
get into, and the gunner, he was firing back, everything was going
good...and then somehow a bullet came through and hit me."
The bullet ended up damaging nerves in
his right leg, but luckily missed internal organs. He was quickly
rushed to Baghdad to undergo surgery.
"Before I went into surgery, there was
somebody walking around in the hospital in Baghdad with a cell phone
and I was laying there somewhat conscious and I called my dad on his
cell phone and told him what happened," Hubbard says.
His father, Larry, remembers getting
the early morning call: "I knew that mentally he was all right
because he had to remember my cell phone number from his memory so
that was a big boost for me that at least I got to talk to him."
still strongly believes in the U.S's mission in Iraq, but after his
experience, he's not eager to return. He will go back though if
he's called for duty. For now, his mission is simply to heal.
Got That Right
April 13, 2005 Dani Barley Green Left
The US military
makes a $72-million dollar profit through its GI Bill Fund, largely
because of the difficult conditions placed on accessing the fund.
Big Rise In British
Deserters 'Fuelled By Iraq War'
[Thanks to CZ, who
sent this in.]
April 13, 2005 Richard Norton-Taylor
and Audrey Gillan, The Guardian
The number of soldiers to desert the
army or go absent without leave has more than doubled over the past
year, the Ministry of Defence has revealed. There are now more than
500 soldiers whose whereabouts are unknown.
The rise coincided with the invasion
of Iraq and its aftermath. Independent sources said yesterday that
the war was clearly a factor. However, the rising trend over four
years suggests that other issues also played a part. The number of
soldiers still illegally absent last year totalled 530, compared
with 205 in 2003, 150 in 2002, and 100 in 2001.
The figures show that soldiers went
Awol more than 3,000 times last year, with only a third of that
figure accounting for returns to base within 21 days. The largest
number of soldiers going Awol came from the infantry, followed by
the Royal Logistic Corps and the Royal Artillery, according to the
The figures were released to Bob
Russell, the Liberal Democrat MP for Colchester, a garrison town.
Though he first asked for the
information in January, the MoD did not respond until it was too
late for him to pursue the matter.
The response to his
original question came more than two months later in a letter from
the armed forces minister, Adam Ingram. "The mere fact they took so
long to answer the question is significant," Mr Russell said
He asked for the
information after being told by a source that a growing number of
soldiers disapproved of the government's stand on Iraq.
Gilbert Blades, a lawyer representing
Awol soldiers, said Iraq was "probably the biggest factor".
But he said a growing number of young
soldiers were also not prepared to "suffer the indignities and
discipline" of army life.
Justin Houston-Roberts, who also
represents soldiers, said: "There's been a very noticeable increase
of not only soldiers but airmen as well asking our advice on being
absent without leave," he said.
"Some are subjected
to horrific bullying and run away to save themselves ... There are
huge amounts of reasons but the conflict in Iraq is significant."
He added: "When the
conflict started we had a very noticeable increase in requests to
assist soldiers who wanted to leave the services or had done so
another solicitor, said: "Certainly from my experience of dealing
with soldiers returning from Iraq, I would be very concerned about
the fact that there's been a doubling up of the numbers going Awol."
Do you have a
friend or relative in the service? Forward this E-MAIL along, or
send us the address if you wish and we’ll send it regularly.
Whether in Iraq or stuck on a base in the USA, this is extra
important for your service friend, too often cut off from access
to encouraging news of growing resistance to the war, at home and
inside the armed services.
Send requests to address up top.
THE PHOTO SAYS IT
TIME TO GET THE
A U.S. Army soldier
searches a hooded Iraqi soldier at a checkpoint in Baghdad on
February 25, 2005. REUTERS/Ali Jasim
NEED SOME TRUTH? CHECK
OUT TRAVELING SOLDIER
Telling the truth
- about the occupation or the criminals running the government in
Washington - is the first reason for Traveling Soldier. But we
want to do more than tell the truth; we want to report on the
resistance - whether it's in the streets of Baghdad, New York, or
inside the armed forces. Our goal is for Traveling Soldier to
become the thread that ties working-class people inside the armed
services together. We want this newsletter to be a weapon to help
you organize resistance within the armed forces. If you like what
you've read, we hope that you'll join with us in building a
network of active duty organizers.
And join with Iraq War
vets in the call to end the occupation and bring our troops home
12 Occupation Cops
Blown Up Near Kirkuk, Including Officer In Charge Of Protecting Oil
April 13. 2005 By TRACI CARL,
Associated Press Writer & CNN & IRIB & Ned Parker, AFP
Near the northern
city of Kirkuk, 12 policemen who had gathered to help dismantle an
apparent decoy bomb were killed by an explosion Wednesday near a
pipeline, police said, including Colonel Natham Abdullah, in charge
of protecting the region's lucrative oil fields. Three others were
Police Brig. Sarhat Qadir said the
explosion took place 10 miles northwest of Kirkuk as police were
trying to cordon off the area.
He said officials believed the bomb being dismantled was a decoy to
draw in more police before the second bomb exploded.
The fatal bombing
just north of Kirkuk struck security forces charged with guarding
the infrastructure of that region's oil industry,
which has been victimized by saboteurs.
Iraqi security forces and Northern Oil
Co. officials said two of the 12 killed were officers in the Oil
4.13.05 CNN & (Xinhuanet)
high-ranking official with Iraq's Interior Ministry was critically
wounded when gunmen attacked his car as he drove to work,
Iraqi police said.
Col. Naji Hussein and his driver were
wounded by small arms fire while driving through the al-Dora
district of southeast Baghdad, police said.
militants attacked a convoy of police vehicles southwest of Samarra,
the northern Iraqi city, wounding three bodyguards of the interior
minister, the US military and Iraqi police said.
"Gunmen opened fire at the convoy of
the interior minister Falahal-Naqib, who was not in the vehicles,
and wounded three of his bodyguards," the joint center of Iraqi-US
forces said in a statement.
Capitalist Shown On Video
April 13. 2005 By TRACI CARL,
Associated Press Writer & Michiana Telecasting Corp
An Indiana man was shown at gunpoint
on a videotape aired by Al-Jazeera television Wednesday, two days
after he was kidnapped from a water treatment plant near Baghdad.
The station said he pleaded for his life and urged U.S. troops to
withdraw from Iraq.
The U.S. Embassy said the man on the
video appeared to be Jeffrey Ake, a contract worker who was
kidnapped around noon Monday.
[Bullshit. He’s not any kind of “worker.” He’s a corporate CEO
that went to Iraq to make money off the Occupation. That’s called a
war profiteer. See next article below. Too fucking bad.]
Ake - the
47-year-old president and CEO of Equipment Express, a company that
manufacturers bottled water equipment - is the latest of more than
200 foreigners seized in Iraq in the past year.
The Al-Jazeera tape showed a man
sitting behind a desk with at least three assailants - two hooded
and one off-camera - pointing assault rifles at him. Ake, wearing an
open-collar shirt with rolled-up shirt sleeves, was sitting or
kneeling behind a wooden desk and holding what appeared to be a
photo and a passport.
In 2003, Equipment
Express built a machine that filled containers with cooking oil to
be used by Iraqis.
The company also built a system to
provide water bottles to be sold in Baghdad. [As
if Iraqis haven’t been filling their own cooking oil containers and
figuring out how to store water for about 3000 years.]
Ake is the current president and
founder of Equipment Express of Rolling Prairie, Indiana.
Ake founded the company back in 1995.
Today, Equipment Express manufactures,
installs, and services a complete line of liquid packaging equipment
including a complete line of filling, capping, and labeling
company serves a wide range of customer types ranging from
start-ups to Fortune 500 companies like Procter and Gamble and
inception, the company has seen extraordinary growth and has
rapidly become an industry standout more than doubling in size
each year in existence.
Again Lends Hand In Iraq
Wednesday, November 19, 2003
The LaPorte Herald Argus
ROLLING PRAIRIE -Equipment Express is
again helping with the rebuilding effort in Iraq.
European country that company president Jeff Ake couldn't identify
because of contractual reasons hired the Rolling Prairie company
to construct an integrated system that will provide water bottles
to be sold in Baghdad.
A second system for
Iraq will be built in January.
Equipment Express began construction
on the system Nov. 3, completed the work Tuesday and will ship it
out today. It should arrive in Baghdad around Christmas.
"We're called Equipment Express
because we are fast.
to be part of the rebuilding effort," Ake said.
In April, Equipment
Express constructed a machine that fills edible oil into containers
to be used for Iraqi residents. Much of the
Middle East needs the edible oil because it's used in so much of the
One Way Of Looking
Lebanon March 25, 2005 (Lefturn.org)
“Now I Am The Viet
A Soldiers’ Story
APISC Conference 2005
on my two decades plus of service, I am convinced that I only
served the richest one percent of my country.
December 22, 1999
By Stan Goff, Consortiumnews.com. Editor's Note:
Stan Goff served in the U.S.
military for two decades, much of the time with Special Forces
training Third World armies. He retired from the U.S.
Army in February 1996, after serving in Vietnam, Guatemala, El
Salvador, Grenada, Panama, Colombia, Peru, Venezuela, Honduras,
Somalia and Haiti. He lives in Raleigh, N.C.
Tolemaida is hot. The whole Sumapaz
River Valley is hotter than hell.
Steep, semi-arid, plenty of thorns and
mosquitoes, it's the perfect place for the Lancero School, where the
Colombian military runs its toughest course of training and
About 70 miles
south of Bogota, Tolemaida is also home of Colombian Special Forces,
kind of like the Fort Bragg of Colombia.
I'd been married
for the second time for only 10 days on Oct. 22, 1992, when 7th
Special Forces sent me there.
Bill Clinton was campaigning for the
presidency against George Bush, and I remember the Delta guys who
were billeted alongside us shrieking and carrying on when the
election results came through. "That faggot lovin' draft dodger!
Delta was there training a select
group of Colombian soldiers for "close-quarter battle," which means
fighting inside buildings during hostage situations and the like.
We were training two battalions of Colombian Special Forces in night
helicopter operations and counterinsurgency tactics.
Of course, we were there helping the
Colombian army to defend democracy against leftist guerrillas who
were the foes of democracy. It mattered not that only a tiny
fraction of the population had the means to recruit and promote
candidates or that terror stalked the population.
I'm not being cynical. I'm just awake
now. It took a couple of decades.
Growing up, I lived
in a neighborhood where everyone worked in the same plant,
McDonnell-Douglas, where F-4 Phantoms were built to provide close
air support for the troops in Vietnam.
My dad and mom both
riveted, working on the center fuselage assembly. I just understood
that it was my duty to fight the godless collectivist menace of
So, I joined the
Army seven months after I squeaked through high school. In 1970, I
volunteered for the airborne infantry and for Vietnam.
In the years that
followed, I found out that I didn't know communism from
cobblestones. All I saw in Vietnam was a race war being conducted
by an invading army, and very poor people were taking the brunt of
I left the Army after my first hitch,
but poverty coaxed me back in in 1977. Soon, I had stepped onto the
slippery slope of a military career. But I didn't like garrison
soldiering and I did like to travel.
So, it was inevitable that I ended up
in Special Operations, first with the Rangers, later with Special
In 1980, I went to Panama. The fences
there separated us from the “Zonies” -- the slum dwellers who lived
in the Canal Zone. After that, I went to El Salvador, Guatemala and
a host of other dirt-poor countries.
Over and over,
the fact that we as a nation seemed to take sides with the rich
against the poor started to penetrate -- first my preconceptions,
then my rationalizations, and finally, my consciousness.
Now I am the Viet
The former Special Forces guy posing
as a political officer didn't even try to hide his real job at the
U.S. Embassy in Guatemala.
"You with the political section?" I
asked. I knew what he did. I was trying to be discreet.
"I'm a fuckin' CIA agent," he
The CIA man had adopted me out of
friendship for a mutual acquaintance, one of my work associates with
whom he had served in Vietnam. The CIA man told me where to get the
best steak, the best ceviche, the best music, the best martinis. He
We stopped off one afternoon at the El
Jaguar Bar in the lobby of the El Camino Hotel, a mile up Avenida de
la Reforma from the U.S. Embassy. He drank eight martinis in the
The CIA man began spontaneously
relating how he had participated in the execution of a successful
ambush "up north," two weeks earlier.
"North" was in the Indian areas:
Quiche and Peten, where government troops were waging a
scorched-earth campaign against Mayans considered sympathetic to
He was elated. "Best fuckin' thing I
got to do since Nam."
"You're talkin' kinda loud," I
reminded him, thinking this must be pretty sensitive stuff.
"Fuck them!" he shot a circumferential
glare. "We own this motherfucker!" The other patrons looked down
at their table tops. The CIA man was big and manifestly drunk.
I should have known better, but I
mentioned a Mayan schoolteacher who had just been assassinated by
the esquadrones de muertos. It had been in the newspapers. The
teacher had worked for the Agency for International Development.
My point was that it made the United
States look bad, when these loose cannons pulled stunts like that.
The impression was left that the U.S. government tacitly approved of
assassinations by continuing to support Guatemala's government.
"He was a communist," stated the CIA
man, without even pausing to toss down his dozenth martini. His
eyes were getting that weird, stony, not-quite-synchronized look.
So that's how it was. I never thought
to thank him for peeling that next layer of innocence off my eyes.
I had to take the CIA man’s car keys
from him that night. He wanted to drive to some whorehouse in Zone
When we left the bar, he couldn't find
his car in the parking lot, so he pulled his pistol on the attendant
and threatened to shoot him on the spot. He accused the attendant
of being part of a car theft gang.
"I know these motherfuckers," he
glared. The attendant was almost in tears, when I wrested the
pistol from my colleague’s hand.
We proceeded to find his car in the
lot one block away. That's when he started talking about driving to
his favorite bordello.
"Gimme the keys!" he bellowed, as I
danced away from him.
"I'll kick your ass," he said.
I reached into my pocket and grabbed
three coins. When he lunged at me again, I tossed the coins into a
street drain with a conspicuous jingle.
"There's the keys," I said.
He peered myopically into the drain
for a moment, then tried to train his eyes on me. I dodged his
staggering assault like he was a child. He almost fell, and I found
myself wondering how I could possibly carry him.
He turned abruptly, like he'd just
forgotten something, and tottered quietly away. I dropped his keys
off at the political section the next day, with a note explaining
where his car was.
Fred Chapin was the U.S. ambassador in
Guatemala. He was famous for his ability to drink a bottle of
Scotch and still give a lucid interview in fluent Spanish, before
his bodyguards carried him up to his room at la residencia and
poured him into bed.
Chapin was credited with a well-known
quote in Foreign Service circles: "I only regret that I have but one
liver to give for my country."
Embassies are collections of these
Mauricio, another one of these exotic
individuals, was the chief Guatemalan investigator assigned to work
with the Security Section at the embassy.
Dissipated to a fault, even the thugs
on the bodyguard details gave him a wide berth. His reputation as a
sadistic former death squad member was well known.
His history was on him, like an aura
of impersonal decay. He made the hair stand up on the back of my
neck. "If you need to find something out, just send Mauricio" was
the provincial wisdom at Security.
Reagan's special ambassador to Central America, came to Guatemala to
see what was being done with U.S. money, other than aboriginal
genocide and the elimination of Bolshevik school teachers, of
I was assigned as a member of his
security for a trip to Nebaj, a tiny Indian hamlet near the Mexican
border. We were going to inspect a hospital.
There were no roads into Nebaj, so a
helicopter was coordinated. When we finally arrived in Nebaj, the
pilot and crew chief were in an animated conversation, both
referring again and again to the fuel gauge.
Out of the helicopter, we were
escorted through the dirt streets to an open-bed 2 1/2-ton truck by
a corpulent, European-looking Guatemalan lieutenant colonel. The
villagers stood in silence as we passed.
Two small children, maybe three years
old, burst into hysterical tears when I walked too near them with my
CAR-15 assault rifle. I tried not to speculate about their reaction
or its antecedents.
The truck took us to a dusty stone
foundation. Nothing more. No rooms, no walls, no nothing. This
was the hospital. Motley turned to me and said, "This is a fuckin'
Later, the lieutenant colonel sat us
in a room at his headquarters and trotted in two "former
guerrillas." One was a skinny old man.
The other was a pregnant woman, around
25 years old.
They told us dutifully that they had
been reformed by their new-found understanding of the duplicity of
the communists and by the humanitarian treatment they had received
at the hands of the soldiers.
It was a flat-eyed, canned recital,
but it seemed to please the lieutenant colonel who sat there with a
benevolent half-smile, glancing from them to us and back, judging
their performance, assessing our reaction.
The skin of the two demonstration
Indians almost moved from underneath with an arid, copper-tongued
terror. The whole place smelled like murder to me.
Reporters in El Salvador tended to
hang out at the pool in the Camino Real Hotel, with transistor
radios pressed to their ears.
I was chatting up a member of the
press corps one day, having lunch at the Camino. Around 30, she
worked for the Chicago Tribune.
She was just terribly excited because
she had been allowed aboard a helicopter the week before, that flew
into Morazan, a stronghold of leftist guerrillas. She got to see
some bang-bang and was eternally grateful to the Embassy for
arranging it for her.
Would I mind, she asked, taking her
out for coffee or a drink somewhere in the barrios sometime? She
would never think of doing it alone.
I was disillusioned. With her anemic
weariness, she annihilated my concept of reporters as eccentric
fearless old salts, obsessed with getting at the real story.
Bruce Hazelwood was a member of the
Milgroup at the U.S. Embassy, like me a former member of the
counter-terrorist unit at Fort Bragg. Hazelwood oversaw training
management in the Estado Mayor, army headquarters.
Over the past five years, he had
earned an enviable reputation as a productive liaison with the
Salvadoran military. He told me off the cuff once that his biggest
problem was getting the officers to quit stealing.
Good-looking, strawberry blonde,
freckled, charming, Hazelwood also was a favorite of the young women
with the press corps.
I went with him and an Embassy
entourage to visit an orphanage at Sonsonate. The women from the
press pool absolutely doted on him. He rewarded them with tons of
Billy Zumwalt, also with the Milgroup,
a fellow with Elvis-like looks, did the same thing at a party. The
women from the press would skin up alongside him, asking how he
thought progress was coming with the human rights situation. He
would ask them how it seemed to them.
Well, they’d say, there were only a
few battlefield executions of prisoners still taking place,
according to rumors, but they'd heard nothing else. We can't expect
them to come around overnight, now, can we?
Would you like to go dancing at an all
night club later? You know where one is? I know where they all
are, he’d tell them.
Zumwalt told me at
a bar once that he was training the finest right-wing death squads
in the world.
The reporters at the Camino Real hired
Salvadoran rich kids as informants and factotums. It was very
important that they be educated, English-speaking kids, 20 to 25
years old, who could keep the reporters abreast of rumors and
happenings in the capital.
But the rich kids were as far from the
lives of average Salvadorans as were most of the reporters.
In the street, I saw an old woman
dragging herself down the sidewalk with a gangrenous leg, a crazy
man shriveled in a corner, bone-skinny kids who played music for
coins with a pipe and a stick.
On the bus one day in downtown San
Salvador, a blind man came begging, and people who could ill afford
it gave him a coin.
These people were callused, very
modestly dressed, with Indian still in their cheeks.
To the slick, manicured, round-eyed,
well-to-do, the poor and the beggars were invisible, as invisible as
the blackened carboneros, the worm-glutted market babies, the
brooding teens with raggedy clothes, prominent ribs and red eyes
glaring out of the spotty shade on street corners.
They have to be invisible so they can
be ignored. They have to be sub-human so they can be killed.
I was reminded of the goats at the
Special Forces Medical Lab. When I was training to be a medic, we
used goats as "patient models."
The goats would be wounded for trauma
training, shot for surgical training, and euthanized over time by
the hundreds for each 14-week class.
Nearly every student upon arrival
would begin expressing his antipathy for the caprine breed. "A goat
is a dumb creature, hard-headed, homely," we’d say.
A few acknowledged what the program
was actually doing without seeking these comfortable
rationalizations. A few even became attached to the animals and
grew more depressed with each day.
But most required the anti-caprine
ideology to sustain their activity.
do you think? Comments from service men and women, and veterans,
are especially welcome. Send to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Name, I.D., withheld on request. Replies confidential.
In Fallujah, U.S.
Envoy Must Hide From The Resistance;
April 14, 2005 By Glenn Kessler,
Washington Post Staff Writer & Edward Harris, & Liz Sidoti AP
FALLUJAH, Iraq, April 13
The most senior
Bush administration official to venture into the city since Marines
captured it last fall, Zoellick had expected to tour a water pumping
station and a bread-making factory to observe signs of the city’s
Zoellick was confined to a
caravan of armored transport vehicles.
Deputy Secretary of State Robert B.
Zoellick paid a surprise visit Wednesday to this former insurgent
stronghold to view the pace of reconstruction and meet with local
officials. He was greeted with an earful of complaints.
His trip appeared
intended to demonstrate that normality was returning to what was
once a symbol of the Sunni Muslim resistance. Yet Zoellick, who
wore body armor under his suit jacket, was told by military
commanders that he could not leave his armored Humvee because of
security concerns during the lightning tour of the shattered
His heavily armored motorcade briefly
paused to gaze at a revived water-treatment plant.
Marines said the security situation in the city remained tenuous,
although daily attacks were down.
then moved so quickly past an open-air bakery reopened with a
U.S.-provided micro-loan that workers tossing dough could be
glanced only in a blink of an eye. Patrols moved carefully down
streets looking for hidden explosive devices.
A one-hour session
with the city's recently elected leaders was held downtown in a
heavily guarded Marine enclave, in a sweltering room with windows
covered with sandbags.
At first, Zoellick
heard words of praise for the U.S. intervention. But as he prodded
the officials to air their concerns, a torrent of complaints poured
out, focusing on such issues as the slow pace of reconstruction aid,
frequent intimidation of citizens by American soldiers and the
inability to buy fresh produce because of military checkpoints.
Some officials said residents weren’t
being paid enough compensation for all that had been destroyed.
They also complained of unsafe
drinking water, an inadequate sewer system
and little food aside from rationed goods. Residents
fretted about not having enough jobs.
fact sheets on Fallujah claim that 95 percent of its residents have
water available in their homes and that $40 million is being spent
to overhaul water plants. But when Zoellick asked Khlaid Jumaly,
chairman of the city council, if most people have safe drinking
water, the answer suggested they did not.
"The drinking water is not really safe
for health," Jumaly, who had a long salt-and-pepper beard and wore a
white turban, replied though an interpreter. "The whole sewer
system is in very bad shape."
Zoellick said he
had just seen the rebuilt water treatment plant and wondered whether
that would ease the problem. Jumaly said the repairs were
insufficient and even damaging. "The people who are working on the
sewer are not very clear about what they are doing," he said.
Zoellick acknowledged later that some
of the images in Fallujah were troubling.
"When you travel the country, you look
at the rubble and you look at the devastation, you know there is a
long way to go," he told reporters traveling with him.
"And when you are
putting on vests for security, you know that there is still danger
After listening intently, Zoellick
told Fallujah’s leaders: “I know it won’t be easy. There will be
many days of frustration, even threats. We can help, but you have
to make it happen.” [The
Imperial envoy need not worry. It would appear from this account
that the resistance is indeed “making it happen.”]
Zoellick and his
entourage arrived in Baghdad early Wednesday and then boarded two
Black Hawk helicopters for Fallujah, skimming the tops of palm trees
and electrical wires to thwart possible snipers or surface-to-air
Then the officials
moved into eight armored vehicles, mostly Humvees, for the tour of
His trip, like
Rumsfeld’s, was kept secret for security reasons.
BRING ALL THE
TROOPS HOME NOW!
Innovation Sets The Edge In War On Insurgents
April 13, 2005 Baghdad (FK) By Ahmed
fighting vehicle recently deployed in Iraq implements a breakthrough
technology to minimize road resistance and tire wear.
In an exclusive
interview with the inventor of what is unofficially dubbed the
star-wars on wheels vehicle (SWOW), it was disclosed that the idea
was originally stimulated by a statement made by Secretary Rumsfeld
shortly before the war on Iraq.
In reference to the
Iraqi facilities that were hard at work producing WMDs, the
secretary declared emphatically that he knew exactly where they
were; namely around Tikrit and Baghdad, and to the north and south
of that area, as well as to the east and to the west of there.
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