July 19, 2006
Iraqi soldiers from 2nd Brigade, 4th Iraqi Army Division, and U.S. soldiers of 1st Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division, were involved in Operation Gaugamela (gaw'guh-MEE-luh). They simultaneously surrounded and entered the cities of Hawija and Riyadh, just west of Kirkuk, searching for suspected al Qaeda terrorists.
The operation, requested by local Sunni Arab leaders, follows a series of terror attacks in the area and comes amid reports of enemies in the area, U.S. officials said. Since the middle of June 2006, 31 Iraqi soldiers have been killed in terrorist attacks in the region.
Operation Gaugamela is named for the battle in which Alexander drove the Persian army from the city of Gaugamela, U.S. officials said.