December 12, 2003

Battle of Baghdad

This is like no story you have yet read about the war in Iraq. "The Thunder Run", from the L.A. Times, is the account of embedded reporter David Zucchino, and chronicles the first decisive thrust into Baghdad in early April, 2003. It makes for riveting reading, and it sure as hell isn't describing a "cakewalk". (login using laexaminer / laexaminer) (Link via Winds of Change) Here's an excerpt:

As the convoy raced through the ambush, an RPG rocketed into a personnel carrier. Staff Sgt. Robert Stever, who had just fired more than 1,000 rounds from his .50-caliber machine gun, was blown back into the vehicle, killed instantly. Shrapnel tore into Chief Warrant Officer Angel Acevedo and Pfc. Jarred Metz, wounding both.

Metz was knocked from the driver's perch. His legs were numb and blood was seeping through his uniform. He dragged himself back into position and kept the vehicle moving. Acevedo was bleeding, too. Screaming instructions to Metz, he directed the vehicle back into the speeding column with Stever's body slumped inside.

Riddled with shrapnel, the convoy limped into the interchange at Curly—and directly into the firefight. Bailey was trying to move his convoy out of harm's way when something slammed into a fuel tanker. The vehicle exploded. Hunks of the tanker flew off, forming super-heated projectiles that tore into other vehicles. Three ammunition trucks and a second fuel tanker exploded. Ammunition started to cook off. Rounds screamed in all directions, ripping off chunks of concrete and slicing through vehicles. The trucks were engulfed in orange fireballs.

Posted by dan at December 12, 2003 12:21 AM