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BAGRAM AIR BASE, Afghanistan (AP) - Asserting a right to self-defense, American forces in eastern Afghanistan have launched artillery rounds into Pakistan to strike Taliban fighters who attack remote U.S. outposts, the commander of American forces in the region said Sunday.
The headline's a beaut: America Fires Missiles Into Pakistan.
Technically that's true, in the sense that a hand thrown rock is a missile, too. (Will we see "Palestinian youths launch missiles at Israelis" next?)
And yes, it was Waziristan.
Me, last Sunday:
Whatever happens, it seems likely that news from Iraq will be prominent this week.Hey, I'll admit it, I was wrong.
(I did pick the right team in the SuperBowl, though.)
When this was your main battery:
And when even the veteran's pages call it "tedious and boring duty" you might forget how important it was...
And they sometimes got air mail!
Regarding that Yon link in the "Large Battle" post, I don't think I need to point out the awesome job Mike's doing over there, but even if there's just one reader here who isn't aware I guess it's worth it.
I've been highlighting numerous MNF-I press releases here for the past several days, mostly because they're the sorts of stories seldom seen in the mainstream news. Maybe, near the bottom of a story headlining the death toll in Iraq you'll see a statement to the effect of "Elsewhere in Iraq, coalition spokesman claimed four alleged insurgents were captured during a raid in sometown."
I glanced back through those MNF-I press releases trying to find one that might correlate with Mike's Roughnecks story. It might be this one:
Coalition Forces disrupted explosives cells in Mosul and Baghdad during two raids Sunday morning, killing a suspected key vehicle-borne improvised explosive device cell leader and detaining five suspected VBIED terrorists.It's entirely possible though that Mike's story came from some other raid in Mosul this past week. Read both accounts; both are factual and unembellished, but Mike's story adds the details and life that no press release can. Though sometimes you'll find a gem of a quote included like that in the third paragraph above, it's more often than not like the difference between reading the final score of a football game you hadn't seen and reading a full account by a reporter who did, and knows more than the score.
The raid in Mosul targeted a terrorist who is believed responsible for the production of explosives used in attacks against Coalition Forces in Mosul.
Upon entering the targeted building, Coalition Forces encountered two suspected terrorists. One of the terrorists ignored Coalition Forces instructions and suddenly reached into his jacket. Coalition Forces responded with proper self defense methods in response to the perceived threat. The terrorist subsequently died from his wounds.
The other suspect was detained and is also believed to be responsible for the attacks. Two other suspected terrorists believed to have ties to the Mosul VBIED network were also detained during the raid.
Worse, the mainstream press, for some odd reason, generally chooses to provide only the oppositions "score".
I'm not addressing that failure here - that's a given. I actually want to point out the magnitude of the failure. Over the past week I've collected not a handful, not a dozen, but 55 such press releases here - and there are others I simply didn't have time to add. Fifty-five stories that could have been told in the way Mike did; unembellished, un-hyped, and simply factual, but with the level of detail that a press release can't provide. Fifty-five stories lacking only the teller to be told.
But for reasons unknown - to me at least - the press won't provide.
This can't be because newspaper or magazine readers don't want this sort of material - I've failed to link Mike's work here recently because the past several times I've tried to do so his servers have been overloaded to the point I've been unable to access his site.
I didn't talk about this back when the battle was going down because I maintain an interlock between blogging and access to information I shouldn't blog about.
Dollard's got it about right from what little I heard from this far away: a huge meeting engagement combined with luck, air dominance, and combined and coalition arms, wiped out a forest full of bad guys.
Yon has an aside that's telling, too:
In a sharp fight that most likely will never be properly told (too much war, too few writers), Colonel Townsend recalled walking on the battlefield and seeing body after enemy body—in the end there would be more than 250 of corpses—and those dead bodies were wearing full combat gear. Few people seemed to notice that battle, and so the daily twosies and threesies of dead terrorists in Mosul go largely uncounted. At least, in our media.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, the subject of Republican criticism for her mode of air travel, flew home nonstop Thursday night aboard a 12-seat military aircraft set aside for use by lawmakers.The story makes a rather bold attempt to mis-characterize Pelosi's settling for a small jet when she had originally demanded a much larger bird, but it's entirely possible the reporter wasn't lying and simply had no idea what he/she was writing about.
HICKAM AIR FORCE BASE, Hawaii, Feb. 9, 2007 – A Marine wounded in Iraq traveled the final leg of his journey back to his unit in style yesterday.
Lance Cpl. Steven Eastburn, a member of 2nd Battalion, 3rd Marines, at Kaneohe Bay, arrived back in Hawaii on an executive jet, after being offered a ride from Travis Air Force Base, Calif., by Marine Gen. Peter Pace, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Eastburn was undergoing treatment at Travis for wounds he suffered in Haqlaniyah, Iraq, on Jan. 31.
Pace visited servicemembers at David Grant Medical Center at Travis while his C-40B aircraft was being refueled. Eastburn was at the hospital, and Pace asked the 20-year-old Marine if he would like a ride back to Hawaii. “Of course I said, ‘Sure,’” the Marine said.
“This is a big government plane,” the chairman said. “We can always make room for one more.”
Note to the slow kids: Yes, the comment about "clearly taunting Pelosi" was Greyhawk being sarcastic.
Now this, on the other hand...
...that's taunting.All done!