Sunday, May 29, 2005

Nebraskans Survive Ambush in Iraq

Here's a great story from the Omaha World Herald (H/T Ryne) about an insurgent ambush of a Nebraska National Guard convoy near Baghdad. The article includes pictures and diagrams, as well as the whole story. The link to the World Herald will break in three weeks, so read it right away (free registration required):
"On a highway south of Baghdad, the young, part-time soldiers from Nebraska's 1075th Transportation Company found 30 minutes of hell. In an unusually large and coordinated attack March 20, the convoy of National Guard troops and civilian contractors was ambushed by up to 50 heavily armed insurgents.

Army officials called it the biggest and most sophisticated convoy ambush in Iraq since April 2004, a disaster in which eight soldiers and contractors died and one man - who later made a celebrated escape - was taken hostage.

In the harrowing Nebraska ambush, it appears the insurgents, many carrying handcuffs, again were intent on taking hostages. Their early success in stopping the convoy left the Nebraskans in grave danger. But once the lead stopped flying, every military and civilian driver in the convoy made it out alive. And 27 insurgents lay dead on the roadsides - one of the highest battle tolls in the two-year-old war.

The way the March 20 attack was fought off by the Nebraskans and then routed by a crack squad of Kentucky National Guard military police has been discussed in the highest levels of the Army as a textbook tactical defeat of an ambush."

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