Well, just as the insurgents replace leaders nabbed during the pre-election offensives and reorganize to increase their attacks on US and Iraqi forces, our forces react to changing conditions and move to retain the upper hand. But this passage is what I liked the most:
After shutting down roads in and out of the town of several thousand residents, more than 725 soldiers — 550 Iraqis and 175 Americans — poured into the dusty streets Wednesday morning in up-armored Humvees, Stryker combat vehicles and the small pickup trucks used by Iraqi forces. Apache helicopters circled the village and a pair of F-16s sliced the sky.
I like that mix, 3:1 Iraqis to Americans. Let’s keep that up for a while, then start edging it up even further.
And get a load of this:
The 2nd Battalion of the 8th Field Artillery spearheaded the mission, acting on intelligence reports that car-bomb makers were operating out of the remote village to conduct attacks against coalition forces north in Mosul.
Insurgents carried out 10 car bomb attacks against coalition forces in the past 14 days, said Lt. Col. Bradley Becker, 2-8 commander. He led the mission along with commanders of the Iraqi Army’s regional forces. [emphasis mine]
Cannon boys. Gotta love ’em.
If they engaged in combat, though, what sort of decorations do they get? The Close Combat Badge. Good. But it should be the Combat Infantryman Badge. The story doesn’t report any combat, though, so it’s probably moot this time around.