Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Army Times story about An Najaf, 28 JAN 07

I was involved in this situation, and while this article goes a long way to telling the story of what happened...it by no means tells it all. I think someone would have to write a book to accurately describe what happened that day just from the perspective of the people flying, much less the guys on the ground.

It happened over a year and a half ago and when I think about it, it seems just like yesterday.

The untold story of the battle against the ‘Soldiers of Heaven’

By Gina Cavallaro - gcavallaro@militarytimes.com
Posted : Monday Sep 29, 2008 16:17:42 EDT

The 11 Special Forces soldiers were speeding along in three Humvees. The call for help had come from an Iraqi army scout.

The Iraqis had moved a little after dawn to arrest what they thought were about 30 potential troublemakers.

The SF team members had no clue they were racing into a 24-hour battle, vastly outnumbered and outgunned by a heavily armed militia of about 800 cult-like Shiite warriors.

The “Soldiers of Heaven” were dug in to fight to the death in their quest to take over the city of Najaf and its holy shrine.

The fighting that erupted Jan. 28, 2007, turned out to be some of the fiercest of the Iraq war. U.S. and Iraqi soldiers killed 373 enemy fighters, and more than 400 surrendered. The U.S. Army awarded more than 100 combat decorations for bravery that day, including at least eight Silver Stars and a Distinguished Flying Cross.

The battle has since been reconstructed in some media accounts ,but the fight against the Soldiers of Heaven remains little known outside the circles of those who were there.

This is that Army story...

For the rest of this story go HERE



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