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Saturday, November 17, 2007

U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Danny L. Herrman, a flightline crew chief with Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 263, watches out the back of a MV-22B Osprey aircraft while taxiing on the flightline of Al Asad Air Base, Iraq, Nov. 10, 2007. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Sheila M. Brooks

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500-Pound Bombs Slam al-Qaida Staging Area on Euphrates Island

U.S. F-16 fighter jets dropped two 2000-pound bombs on an island in the Euphrates Nov. 16 that was believed to be used by al-Qaida as a staging ground for attacks. (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle footage)

Saturday, 17 November 2007

BAGHDAD — Operation Marne Courageous kicked off the early morning of Nov. 16 with more than (600) Coalition forces and Iraqi Army (IA) Soldiers moving into two villages near the border of Anbar province to drive out al-Qaida in Iraq (AQI), and lay the groundwork for a sustained Coalition presence. Bomb Drop Video

Soldiers of the 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), were joined by about (150) IA Soldiers in the air assault on the Sunni villages of Owesat and al Betra, west of the Euphrates River, 15 miles southwest of Baghdad.

Troops were transported in four helicopter lifts across the Euphrates, utilizing two CH-47 Chinook and eight UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters. A Marine reconnaissance platoon, as well as Soldiers of the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, stationed in neighboring Anbar province, secured the landing zone.

Once on the ground, the U.S.-Iraqi force was supported by an air weapons team of Apache and Kiowa helicopters, while approximately (70) members of an Iraqi Concerned Local Citizens (CLC) group assisted in securing the outlying perimeter.

While U.S. and Iraqi forces moved through the villages, other troops set to work constructing a bridge across the Euphrates to allow for the transport of materials and supplies to build a patrol base in the area. The base will allow for a sustained Coalition presence in the area of Owesat, part of Baghdad’s southwestern “belts.”

No enemy fighters were killed or captured during the assault.

Prior to the air assault, U.S. F-16 fighter jets dropped two 2000-pound bombs on an island in the Euphrates that was believed to be used by AQI as a staging ground for attacks. The bombardment was part of a “terrain denial” strategy, cutting off a potential AQI escape route and denying the enemy a location to regroup.

Marne Courageous’ main strategic thrust is to clear AQI extremists from the area of Owesat, establish a Coalition presence, and develop a CLC program in the area as a bulwark against further enemy activity.

Army Col. Dominic Caraccilo, commander of the 3rd BCT, 101st Abn. Div., described the mission to journalists Nov. 11. “We’re going to put a footprint there. We’re going to establish a forward operating base,” he said.

The mission was also conducted because Coalition forces believe AQI operating in the area were involved with the May 12 attack which resulted in two missing/captured U.S. Soldiers, Pvt. Byron Fouty and Spc. Alex Jimenez, belonging to the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry). The 3rd BCT, 101st Abn. Div., took over the mission of the 2nd BCT, 10th Mtn. Div. at the end of October.

“The Soldiers that were captured and still missing from the 10th Mountain are now part of the Rakkasan unit, and also part of the Task Force Marne unit. And the mission I have is to exploit every avenue to try to identify where they are,” Caraccilo said.

(Story by By Tim Kilbride, Multi-National Division-Center Public Affairs)

In Other Recent Developments Here:

BAGHDAD — Almost 100 Iraqi Correctional Officers graduated from the Iraqi CorrectionalOfficerTraining Academy at a ceremony held Nov. 8 at Camp Cropper.

BAGHDAD — Coalition forces killed six terrorists and detained 10 suspects today during operations targeting terrorist networks in central and northern Iraq.

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Americans can send text messages of thanks and get responses from active-duty troops through the "Giving Thanks" initiative of the Defense Department's America Supports You program. Between 6 a.m. EST on Nov. 17 and midnight PST on Nov. 22, people wishing to express gratitude to the troops for their service can text a brief message to 89279. - Story - Video

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In Today's News - Saturday, November 17, 2007

Quote of the Day
"Iraq is a long way from (here),
but what happens there matters a great deal here.
For the risks that the leaders of a rogue state
will use nuclear, chemical or biological weapons
against us or our allies is the greatest security threat we face."
-- Madeline Albright, Feb 18, 1998

News of Note
Operation Iraqi Freedom
Could U.S. military gains in Iraq outlast Bush?
Iraq asks Turkey for time to take steps against PKK
Mass grave found in southern Baghdad
Kirkuk Airspace Returned to Iraqi Control

Operation Enduring Freedom
U.S.-led troops kill 23 militants in Afghanistan
2 NATO soldiers killed in Afghanistan
Gunfire hit most of Afghan bomb victims
Woman Shot for Not Helping Taliban
Despite Wounds ANA, ANP Fight Bravely to Secure Oruzgan Province

Homeland Security / War on Terror / Hamas-Hezbollah Happenings
Pakistan Troops Launch Major Assault on Militants
Palestinians seek pre-conference settlement freeze
Lebanon rivals can agree, Italian minister says

Troops (and contractors) on Trial
State Dept official asks to cancel Blackwater hearing

Other Military News
Forgotten hero: Exhibit honors Lafayette
Naval Academy program tackles harassment

Worldwide Wackos
Iran says ready to act if attacked
Chavez: US attack on Iran will spike oil

Homegrown Moonbats
Casey says Bush wrong on war

Politics / Government
Bush criticizes Democrats over Iraq war funds
Bush wants tax legislation from Congress
Giuliani says he'd appoint conservative judges
McCain says he'll respect Clinton
Dem Fight Turning Ugly - Hillary campaign: Obama fell into GOP 'trap'
Clinton seeks to convince voters she won debate - Video
Clinton advances renewable energy ideas
N.H. Waiting for Michigan to Settle on a Primary Date
CAMPAIGN CARL: Cameron Blogs From the Trail
Three U.S. Agencies Reviewing Tech Support to Syria
U.S. envoy urges Musharraf to end emergency - Video
Independence loses its magic in Kosovo vote
China calls for quick reforms in Myanmar

Illegal Immigration / Border Control
Immigrant Couple Faces Deportation Over Marriage Status
Halloween Costume Flap Imperils Immigration Post

In the Courts/ Crime and Punishment / Law and Order
Price War Between Detroit Gas Station Owners Turns Deadly
Oregon Police Find 8 Dogs in Freezer, 24 Running Loose While Serving Child Porn Warrant
Malnourished 3-Week-Olds Found Under Bed; Mom Dead
Judge to Parents: Get Kids Vaccinated or Go to Jail
N.J. SWAT Team Axed After Racy Hooters Pictures Surface
Pathologist: No Accident, Ex-Cop's Wife Murdered
Relatives try to confront Ill. officer
Orgies Abound at Adult Clubs Outside Kansas City, Where Industry Is Largely Unregulated
Bonds' lawyers to question steroid test
Courts stall inmate's desire to die

Adventures in Political Correctness
6-Year-Old Booted from School Over Stick Figures
Fight Over Roadside Cross Memorials - VIDEO - PHOTOS

U.N. News
U.N. Panel: Climate Change Accelerating, Action 'Urgent'

Media in the Media / Bloggers in the News / Watching the Web
CNN Defends Choice to End Debate With Softball Question
'Saturday Night' Dead? - Report: Writer's strike claims SNL staff
Internet future looms over writers strike
Screenwriters, studios to renew talks
Georgia Police Say Craigslist Becoming Haven for Prostitution
Mom: MySpace Hoax Led to Daughter's Suicide
Train Ad Features Urinating Skinhead, Stirs Controversy
Google closer to mobile airwaves bid: sources
Yahoo shares up on Blodget takeover musings

Science / Medicine and Health / Technology
Rodents Shutter NYC Eatery Offering Most Expensive Dessert in the World
Infants of obese mothers have higher mortality risk
Child health fight grim sign for broader U.S. reforms
Noah's Ark flood spurred European farming
Mexican rancher to clone prize fighting bull
Slacker starts rolling out players to consumers
Sony PS3 weekly U.S. sales double after price cut - Video

Mother Nature
Nearly 2,000 Killed in Bangladesh Cyclone
Chile struck by 6.0 magnitude quake
Japanese whalers chafe under curbs
Ca. fire documents conflict with reports

News from My Neck of the Woods
Police to Search Kids' Boston Bedrooms for Guns

Doomsday Cult Threatens Fiery End
Laid-Back Surfer Dude May Be Next Einstein
Drug hitmen snatch buddy's body from morgue
Firemen told to abstain from sexual bribes

Other News of Note
No, Really: 'World's Biggest Liar' Crowned
New Zealand Denies Woman Entry Over Weight

Fox News
Collector Pays Over $30M for Rejected U.S. Coins
Plane Headed to Las Vegas Diverted After Couple Tries to Join 'Mile High Club'
High School Cheerleaders Suspended for Flashing Crowd During Britney Spears Routine
Report: 'American Idol' Star Katharine McPhee Is Engaged

Slovenian unions stage mass protest for higher wages
Swiss right-to-die group to expand into Germany
Creamer and Ochoa cruise into ADT shootout
Move over Paris. Forbes ranks interesting heiresses
U.S. shoppers set to trade down with holiday jewels
"Beowulf" takes early lead at box office
Volatility, thin trade seen due to holiday - Video
Wall St ends higher on tech in choppy day - Video
Oil rises over $95 on weak dollar
Starbucks sales slowdown kills buzz on shares
Free could hurt Dow
BHP says direct Rio bid might be future option
Pardus to pitch Delta merger to investors: sources
Lifting the Lid: Were banks' writedowns too little, too late?
Saudi may order 24 Eurofighter jets
Porsche and Volkswagen to cooperate further: paper

AP World News
Abuse risk seen worse as families change
Laughs continue for 'SNL' and '30 Rock'
Top-ranked Tigers squeeze past Ole Miss
Pastor of Ala. church bombed in '63 dies
Buckeyes give Tressel historic victory
Stagehands and producers resume talks
Buffett advised A-Rod to go around Boras

CENTCOM: News Releases

Command continues preparations for multinational effort
More about Multinational Experiment 5
Allied Command Transformation, U.S. Joint Forces Command honor outgoing commander, welcome new leader
Read Gen. Mattis' remarks - podcast - photos
Commands bring together experimentation leaders

Multi-National Force-Iraq
Gates, Mullen Discuss Progress, Future Objectives for Iraqi, Coalition Forces - View Transcript - View Slides
Market Thriving, Economy Improving in Baghdad Neighborhood
Iraqi Christians Return to Worship in St. John’s Church
Eight suspects captured, cache discovered (Baghdad)
Iraqi Army, volunteers find cache during raid (Baghdad)
Iron Hammer successful in pursuit of al-Qaeda in Iraq (Tikrit)
Operation Marne Courageous: Coalition Forces establish presence west of the Euphrates
Former extremist leads joint forces to huge weapons cache (Baghdad)
Coalition forces target al-Qaeda networks; six terrorists killed, 10 detained

Bush Thanks Japanese Prime Minister for Support - Photos
Army Must Adapt To Changing Threats
Furloughs Possible Without More Funding

Team Assesses Salang Situation
Troops Detain Suspected Terrorist

Americans Can Text ‘Thanks’ to Troops - Video
Musicians Create CD To Thank Troops

Marine Helps 'Awaken' Anbar Province

Commander Says Violence Down Significantly
Iraqi Contractor Rebuilds Hope with Hammers
Team Helps Iraqis Build Institutional Operations
Coalition Forces Kill 2, Detain 12 Terrorists
Officials Believe Iran Stemmed Weapons Flow

Fathers, Sons Serve Together in Iraq

Bost/Laskar Ghurian Herat Kabul Qandahar

Ansbach Aschaffenburg Berlin Berlin-Tempelhof Berlin/Schonefeld Bremerhaven
Darmstadt Frankfurt Frankfurt/Main Freiburg/Breisgau Garmisch
Garmisch-Partenkirchen Geilenkirchen Gelnhausen Giessen Kitzingen
Hanau Am Main Heidelberg Mainz Mannheim Nurnberg Stuttgart Trier
Wiesbaden Wurzburg


Agana Agana Heights Agat Andersen AFB Asan Barrigada

Al Azamiyah Al Basrah Al Hillah Al Karkh Al Kazimiyah Al Kut
An Nasiriyah Baghdad Baqubah Mosul Najaf Nineveh Tall Kayf

Kadena Air Base Okinawa Tokyo Yokohama

National Hurricane Center

Today in History
1278 - 680 Jews are arrested (293 are hanged) in England for counterfeiting coins.
1558 - Elizabeth I ascends the English throne upon the death of Queen Mary.
1800 - Congress holds its first session in Washington, DC.
1853 - Street signs are authorized at San Francisco intersections.
1862 - Confederate Secretary of War George B. Randolph resigns.
1869 - In Egypt, the Suez Canal opens.
1913 - The Panama Canal opens.
1927 - A tornado hits Washington, DC.
1937 - In the beginning of appeasement, Britain's Lord Halifax visits Germany.
1938 - Italy passes their own version of the anti-Jewish Nuremberg laws.
1945 - H.J. Wilson of the RAF sets a world air speed record 606 mph (975 kph).
1948 - Britain's House of Commons votes to nationalize the steel industry.
1959 - The De Beers firm of South Africa announces the production of a synthetic diamond.
1962 - President Kennedy dedicates the Dulles International Airport outside Washington, DC.
1966 - The Leonids meteor shower peaks (150,000+ per hour).
1967 - Surveyor-6 becomes the first man-made object to lift off the Moon.
1970 - Russia lands the Lunokhod-1 unmanned remote-controlled vehicle on the Moon.
1973 - President Nixon tells the AP "...people have got to know whether or not their President is a crook. Well, I'm not a crook."
1977 - Egyptian President Sadat formally accepts an invitation to visit Israel.
1988 - Benzir Bhutto wins the election in Pakistan.
1993 - The U.S. Congress votes for NAFTA.

- Louis XVIII, first post-revolutionary King of France (1814-24)
1887 - Bernard L. Montgomery, British general (WW II-African campaign)

- Arthur Vining Davis, CEO (Alcoa-1910-57)

Reported Missing in Action
Bowling, Roy H., USN (CA); A4E shot down (w/Taylor)

Hiemer, Jerry A., US Army (TN); reported KIA in firefight, body not recovered

Taylor, Jesse, Jr., USN (CA); A4E shot down (w/Bowling), remains returned December, 1975

Cappelli, Charles R., USAF (RI); F105D shot down, remains returned April, 1989

Emrich, Roger Gene, USN (FL); F4B shot down (w/McGrath), remains returned, ID'd February, 1997

Key, Wilson D., USN (NC); A4C shot down, released by DRV March, 1973 - retired as a Captain - alive and well as of 1998

McGrath, William Darrell, USN (CA); F4B shot down (w/Emrich), remains recovered December, 1985

Derby, Paul D., USMC (WI); F4B shot down, KIA, body not recovered

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