Magazine article Soldiers Magazine

Learning the Urban Fight: As the Rest of the Patrol Waited in the Woods and Provided Cover, a Second Platoon Supported the Operation from an Area of the Woods

Magazine article Soldiers Magazine

Learning the Urban Fight: As the Rest of the Patrol Waited in the Woods and Provided Cover, a Second Platoon Supported the Operation from an Area of the Woods

Article excerpt

THE Muslim call to prayer reverberated throughout the mock Iraqi village of Al-Dawar as two platoons of Soldiers waited in their positions in the nearby woods.

Drill sergeants, who served as team leaders, passed orders to squad leaders to update their Soldiers on the upcoming mission to search the village.

One squad would meet with the village headman, who had been seen walking through the village with another man who toted an assault rifle. It was hard to tell if the man with the weapon was part of a protection detail or if he was holding the elder hostage.

The five-member squad moved into the village and toward the two Soldiers portraying Iraqis. As the rest of the patrol waited in the woods and provided cover, a second platoon supported the operation from an area of the woods overlooking the village.

Through an Army translator, the squad leader told the two Iraqi role-players that the village would be searched for weapons and materials for making improvised explosive devices, or for enemy soldiers hidden inside the buildings.

After answering a few questions, the two men turned and walked away, as if they were about to lead the squad through the village. But something was wrong. The man with the assault rifle suddenly pointed his weapon in a threatening manner, prompting the Soldier to order him to drop it.

But the man ignored the order and turned the weapon toward the squad, then "fired" a few rounds, "hitting" one Soldier in the leg. …

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