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Release A051001g

Operation Iron Fist Update

Multi-National Force-Iraq

CAMP BLUE DIAMOND, AR RAMADI, Iraq – The first day of Operation Kabda Bil Hadid, or Iron Fist in English saw several successful engagements against al Qaeda in Iraq terrorists operating in and around Sadah, approximately 12 kilometers east of the Syrian border.

The operation continues with a force of approximately 1,000 Marines, Soldiers and Sailors from Regimental Combat Team-2. Coalition Forces, including helicopters from 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing, engaged and killed eight armed terrorists in fighting early in the day Oct. 1.

During another engagement, terrorists drove two vehicles in the vicinity of a Marine position, dismounted and began to attack with small-arms fire. One of the vehicles was found to be rigged with explosives. The gun battle left four terrorists dead. The fifth surrendered to the Marines.

In the late morning, Marines discovered and destroyed a roadside bomb on the outskirts of Sadah. Shortly afterwards, a M1A1 Main Battle Tank destroyed a vehicle car bomb with one round from its main gun southwest of the city. North of Sadah, U.S. Forces killed three al Qaeda in Iraq terrorists after the group attacked their checkpoint with small-arms fire.

The eighth terrorist was killed when an AH-1W Super Cobra helicopter destroyed a vehicle after its driver fired on a Marine position with a rocket-propelled grenade. Another vehicle traveling with the attacker was seen to be carrying additional RPGs and was subsequently destroyed by missile fire from the Cobra. The driver and passenger escaped the blast.

No Marine casualties have been reported.

The goal of the operation is to root out al Qaeda in Iraq terrorists operating within the area and disrupting terrorist support systems in and around Sadah.

The offensive is part of an overall operation called Sayaid or Hunter in English, which is intended to deny al Qaeda in Iraq terrorists the ability to operate freely in the Euphrates River Valley and to prevent the terrorists from influencing the local population through murder and intimidation.

More information will be released as it becomes available.




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