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Cryo Chamber

Behind the scenes in the Battle of Fallujah

This was emailed to me, and because of that I have my doubts as to the credibility of this tale; I post it anyway.

Subject: Battle of Fallujah…..and Happy Thanksgiving Everyone,

Well Task Force 2-7 Cav made it back from Fallujah earlier than

expected, mission accomplished. It feels so good to be back from a

second successful mission that was as difficult as it was dangerous. We

left Camp Cooke on Nov 1 and staged at Camp Fallujah for about a week.

While there, we got the good news that George Bush was re-elected’.and

we had busy days and nights of planning and rehearsals for the big

attack. 2 days before “D Day,” a 122 mm rocket impacted 50 meters away

from our tents that sent everyone to the floor. We staged there at a

remote part of the post and it was obvious that a local national tipped

off the “mujahadin” (Arabic name for the enemy) where we staged. From

that attack, we lost one soldier and 4 more were wounded. That attack

gave the rest of the Task Force enough anger to last the whole fight.

After all the drills and rehearsals, the day for the attack finally came

on Nov 8. Prime Minister Allawi gave the green light and Coalition and

Iraqi forces went all the way.

On Nov 7, a battalion of Marines seized the peninsula to the west of the

city to prevent insurgents from fleeing. A brigade (4,000 soldiers)

from the First Cav set up another cordon around the city to catch anyone

fleeing. The plan was to make sure the insurgents would either

surrender or fight and be killed. Intelligence estimates put the enemy

between 3,000 – 5,000 strong, so we knew we had a tough fight ahead of


One of the interesting factors to this fight was the weather’.although

Iraq is unbelievable hot in the summer (up to 130 in Najaf), it was

colder out in Fallujah than it was back in New York. Temperatures were

typically in the upper-30′s and low 40′s between 5 pm ‘ 8 am. The

average temperature here has dropped about 30 degrees in the past month

or so.

We moved all of our vehicles and soldiers from Camp Fallujah to a

position about 1 mile north of the city. That’s also where we set up

our TF support area (re-fuel, re-arm) and where we set up the Tactical

Operations Center. All day long while we’re setting up at that

location, Air Force and Marine Corps aviators shaped the battlefield

with laser-guided bombs and hellfire missiles. Although American forces

had not been into the city since April, we had been collecting

intelligence on the city for months through unmanned aerial vehicles

(UAV’s), human intelligence, and Special Forces. So we knew exactly

where they stored their weapons and where they held meetings, and so

on’.all of these attacks from the air were precise and very effective in

reducing the enemy’s ability to fight us before the battle even started.

With each attack, secondary explosions of weapons/ammo blowing up were

heard. The Coalition also threw the enemy a curveball by destroying all

the vehicles that had been parked in the same location for more than 3

days—the enemy planned to use these as car bombs when we attacked.

Again, almost every single vehicle the air assets attacked had huge

secondary explosions.

After 12 hours of massive air strikes, Task Force 2-7 got the green

light and was the first unit to enter the city. There is a big train

station on the city’s northern limit, so the engineers cleared a path

with some serious explosives and our tanks led the way. While this was

happening, my intelligence shop was flying our own UAV to determine

where the enemy was. It is a very small plane that is launched by being

thrown into the air. We flew it for 6 hours and reported grids to the

tanks and bradley’s of where we saw insurgents on the roof and moving in

the street—so our soldiers knew where the enemy was, before they even

got to the location. We crossed the train station just before midnight

and led the way for the Marines by killing everything we could in our

way. It took our tanks and brads until 10 am the next day to get 2

miles into the city. They killed about 200 insurgents in the process

and softened the enemy for the Marines. 5 of our soldiers were wounded

in this first 10 hours, but we accomplished our part of the plan.

The Marines’ mission was to follow TF 2-7 and fight the enemy by

clearing from building to building. A lot of the insurgents saw the

armored vehicles and hid. They waited for the Marines to come and took

their chances by fighting them since the Marines weren’t protected by

armor like we were. In that first day of fighting, the Marines took 5 x

KIA and many more wounded, but they also did their job very well. Along

the way, they found HUGE caches of weapons, suicide vests, and many

foreign fighters. They also found unbelievable amounts of drugs, mostly

heroin, speed, and cocaine. It turns out, the enemy drugged themselves

up to give them the ‘courage” and stupidity to stay and fight. The enemy

tried to fight us in “the city of mosques” as dirty as they could. They

fired from the steeples of the mosques and the mosques themselves. They

faked being hurt and them threw grenades at soldiers when they

approached to give medical treatment. They waived surrender flags, only

to shoot at our forces 20 seconds later when they approached to accept

their surrender.

The next few days, TF 2-7 maintained our battle positions inside the

city, coming out only for fuel and more ammo. We fought 24 hours a day

and continued to support the Marines as they cleared from house to

house. If they were taking heavy fire or RPG fire from a house, they

would call on our tanks. Our guys would open up on the house with 120 mm

main gun or .50 cal. After 5 minutes of suppressive fire, then the

Marines would go into the building and clear it. There was rarely

anyone left alive by that point. The problem is that we couldn’t be

there to do that for all the Marines’.and when we couldn’t and they had

to clear the building without our help, they took heavy casualties

because the insurgents didn’t stop firing until the Marines got into the

building and killed them.

After 3 days, half of the city had been cleared and Iraqi Forces

followed the Marines to re-clear the buildings and clean up the caches.

Sometimes the insurgents who had managed to hide from the Marines would

stand and fight the Iraqis, so they took some casualties as well. But

they did a good job of securing the area and collecting the thousands of

AK-47′s, RPG’s, mortars, and IED’s that were in these houses. All that

ammo proved just how intensely the enemy planned to defend the

city’after all, Fallujah was the symbol of the resistance against the

new Iraqi government. They wanted to keep their safe haven for

terrorists like Zarqawi to behead innocent people. Since no Coalition

Forces were allowed into the city, they were able to get away with those

atrocious acts without much trouble.

On day 3 of the fight, we had the most exciting moment for me personally

when our Task Force Support Area and TOC came under attack. Insurgents

fired mortars and rockets at us everyday, some landing as close as 30

meters from us. But on this day at 6 pm, just as it was getting dark, we

took 3 rounds very close’and then to the north 8-10 insurgents opened up

with small arms fire on the TOC. Luckily, a tank platoon was back

re-fueling and along with the scout platoon, laid down some serious

firepower and killed them all in a matter of 5 minutes. But all of us

in the TOC got to go out and be part of the fight, firing rounds and

seeing the tanks unload on these insurgents. None of us were hurt, but

it was an exciting 10 minutes.

THEN came the second push through the rest of the city. Although by day

4, the Coalition had already killed over a thousand, many of them fled

to the southern portion of the city and took up positions there. Again,

Task Force 2-7 led the push a little before midnight. Same mission,

same purpose: To soften up enemy strong points and kill as many

insurgents as possible to enable the Marines to follow us when the sun

rose. The Marines from Regimental Combat Team 1 did just that for the

next 5 days—fighting house to house, finding more weapons, more

torture chambers, more ammunition, and more insurgents ready to fight to

the death. One fighter came running out of a building that our tanks

set on fire’.he was on fire and still shooting at us. As our Sergeant

Major said, “going up against tanks and brads with an AK-47, you have to

admire their effort!” Over the next 5 days, the Marines and our Task

Force killed over 1,000 more insurgents. In that time frame, over 900

more fighters made the decision to spend 30 years in prison rather than

die. The Marines are still occupying the city and helping with the

rebuilding process—they still meet some sporadic resistance, usually a

group of 3-5, shooting from a mosque or faking surrender and then

shooting at them.

We were very disturbed to find one house with 5 foreigners with bullets

in their head, killed execution style. Marines also came upon a house

where an Iraqi soldier in the Iraqi National Guard had been shackled to

the wall for 11 days and was left there to die. These insurgents are

some sick people and Fallujah proved that more than ever. 2 mosques

were not being used for prayer’.but rather for roadside bomb making.

They were literally IED assembly line factories, with hundreds of IED’s

complete or being built. They also had several houses with high-tech

equipment where they conducted their meetings. In Fallujah, the enemy

had a military-type planning system going on. Some of the fighters were

wearing body armor and kevlars, just like we do. Soldiers took fire

from heavy machine guns (.50 cal) and came across the dead bodies of

fighters from Chechnya, Syria, Libya, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Afghanistan,

and so on’.no, this was not just a city of pissed off Iraqis, mad at the

Coalition for forcing Saddam out of power. It was a city full of people

from all over the Middle East whose sole mission in life was to kill

Americans. Problem for them is that they were in the wrong city in

November 2004.

Now that it’s over, there is a lot of things that people back home

should know. First of all, every citizen of Fallujah (non-insurgent) is

getting $2,500 USD (that’s a lot over here) to fix up their house or buy

new things that may have been destroyed in the fighting. Insurgents

took up positions in resident’s houses so we were forced to destroy a

lot of buildings. There is over $100 million dollars ready to be spent

to re-build the city. This may seem like a lot of money, but I can

assure you that it is a small price to pay for the amount of evil people

no longer alive, contemplating how to kill more Americans. The

intelligence value alone is already paying huge dividends. Some of the

900 detainees are telling everything they know about other insurgents.

And the enemy never expected such a large or powerful attack and they

were so overwhelmed that they left behind all kinds of things, including

books with names of other foreign fighters, where their money and

weapons come from, etc’ I went into the city 3 times, but after a lot of

the fighting had been done. It was amazing to see how the American

military had brought the world’s most evil city to its knees. I have an

awful lot of pictures that I am going to upload to my webshots site’.it

will blow your mind to see what the insurgents forced us to do to win

this fight. And seeing the pictures of what I saw firsthand will make

you very happy to be an American and know that our country has this

might if evildoers force us to use it. Our mission in Iraq is to help

the Iraqi Security Forces become stable enough to keep this country

safe’.and once in a while fight with our full might to give these

security forces a fair chance. When we need to go after the enemy with

all we’ve got, the results have been amazing.

In the fight for Fallujah, our military lost over 50 soldiers and

Marines including a sergeant major, company commander, and 8 platoon

leaders, along with 40 kids, typically between 19 and 23 years old. I

can’t even tell you how proud I was to be part of this fight and know

these soldiers who were going from building to building to take the

fight to the enemy. My Task Force lost 2 more soldiers after the rocket

attack at Camp Fallujah, 1 of them that I knew pretty well. It was hard

on the unit to deal with these losses, to go along with the 16 soldiers

from 2-7 who were wounded. But this was a fight we knew would be

dangerous’..but worth the risk based on the good that would come out of

it. Anyone back home who thinks the world is a safe place needs to come

here for a day and learn real fast that there are an awful lot of people

out there who hate Americans so much that they risk their lives to try

to kill us. We cannot live peacefully back at home right now unless we

continue to stay on the offensive against our enemies and fight them in

their backyards. Remember, radical Arabs started this war’.and they

continue to fight it, proving to America over and over that they need to

be fought.

I am hopeful that most Americans understand that you have to accept

death to defeat evil; all of us soldiers accepted that the day we signed

up. There are some things worth fighting and dying for, and making the

world and especially America, a safer place, is one of them. For every

Mom out there that you read about who turns into a peace protestor when

her son is killed in action, there are 99 Moms you don’t hear about who

are proud and believe in this mission even more.

It sure is good to be back to Taji after our second “field trip.” We

have an officers vs. enlisted football game tomorrow where I am the

quarterback, so I am excited about that. We also have a Task Force

Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow. Despite the fact we have upcoming

Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years away from family, friends, and

fun’.all of our soldiers are thankful to be back after this big fight

and to have played such an important role in the successful mission. I

received some nice letters out there that were very supportive, so thank

you to all of you who did that for me. Thanks for all your prayers and

support’.and I wish everyone back home a Happy Thanksgiving and some

quality time spent with family and friends.


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