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Weapons cache uncovered, 14 suspects caught

TIKRIT, Iraq (Army News Service, Dec. 8, 2005) – Just a week after a huge cache of mortars was uncovered near the northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk, another large terrorist cache was discovered Dec. 6 near the neighboring city of Tuz.

Soldiers from the 2nd Battalion, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division, found two storage bunkers crammed with weapons near Forward Operating Base Bernstein, west of the city.

More than 400 rockets of various types and 80 mortar rounds were discovered in the bunkers. Mortars and rockets, along with IEDs, are the preferred weapons of terrorists, officials said, because they allow them to conduct attacks and then run away from the launch sites without having to face Iraqi or Coalition forces.

Seventy cases of small arms ammunition, 100 artillery fuses, and a dozen rocket-propelled grenade warheads were also stashed in the bunkers.

An explosive ordnance disposal team was called in to inspect the weapons and conducted a controlled detonation to destroy the cache.

Another weapons cache was seized in Kirkuk Dec. 6, after police received a tip from a local resident. Rockets, mortars, tank rounds, anti-aircraft rounds and artillery fuses were taken by Soldiers from 1st BCT and an EOD team for disposal.

Bulldawg Chariot, Able Rising net 14 terrorists

Iraqi Soldiers and Police along with U.S. troops successfully conducted two separate operations that resulted in the capture of 14 suspected terrorists early Dec. 8.

Operation Bulldawg Chariot, a joint mission with Soldiers from Iraq’s 3rd Battalion, 2nd Brigade, 5th Army Division and 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, netted four suspected terrorists near Baqubah, located northwest of Baghdad.

A tip given by an Iraqi civilian led to the operation to nab terrorists suspected of harassing, threatening and intimidating local Iraqi civilian construction workers who are building a new prison facility.

In Khadasia, about eight kilometers northwest of Tikrit, Operation Able Rising Force unfolded with 10 suspected terrorists captured, including three who are wanted for IED attacks against local civilians and military. The operation consisted of Soldiers from 1st Battalion, 1st Brigade, 4th Iraqi Army Division, Iraqi Police from the area and Soldiers from 1st Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division.

(Editor’s note: This story contributed by Lt. Col. Ed Loomis, and MSG Terry Webster 101st Airborne Division PAO.)

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