2nd Brigade Combat Team PAO
BAGHDAD─ Elements of 3rd Squadron, 7th Cavalry, working with the 3rd Public Order Brigade (POB) of Iraq's Ministry of Interior, engaged and killed four terrorists in two separate incidents in Salman Pak, Dec. 14.
At about 3 p.m. a patrol from C. Troop, 3-7 CAV, was visiting a POB headquarters building to share information when small arms fire was heard outside.
"One of the POB Soldiers came down from the roof of the building and told us they were receiving small arms fire from across the Tigris River, about 800 meters," said Sgt. 1st Class Dillard Johnson, a platoon sergeant in C Troop.
Johnson immediately deployed his Soldiers to see if the threat was still present.
He placed his Soldiers on the roof tops.
While positioning his Soldiers, they started to receive small arms fire from across the river.
"I used my laser rangefinder to give me the distance to the enemy location, it was 852 meters exactly, a long shot," he said. Johnson, directed his Soldiers to orient on the location of the enemy.
They observed two terrorists in the prone position. The enemy had a truck with what looked like a two person observation team to help them identify their targets and probably to provide emergency egress, he said.
The enemy shooters hit pretty close to them, 'some rounds landed within six inches of us as we moved to our own firing positions," said Staff Sgt. Jared Kennedy a Bradley commander.
The enemy proved no match for the well trained marksmen of 3-7 CAV.
"I engaged one enemy shooter with my own rifle. My first round fell short
but it must have scared him because he stood up to run away. The next round I fired, hit him and he went down," Johnson said.
At that point the other enemy shooter stood up. It looked like he was going to make a dash for his truck, Kennedy said.
He hit the other shooter in the chest as he started to run away, said Kennedy.
"I positioned a team of Bradley's to observe the other side of the river," he said.
About 11 p.m. a Toyota pickup truck was observed moving into the location where the small arms fire had originated, Johnson said.
"The truck was suspicious and it looked like it had a mortar tube in the back of it," he said.
Shortly after the truck stopped the suspected terrorists fired two mortar rounds in the direction of the U.S. Forces.
"As soon as they fired at us, I had our Bradley's open up on them. The enemy fired one more round before two of them were killed. The truck was able to drive away but I was able to direct an Army helicopter to track it down. I could see where the truck stopped, in front of a farm, but it was too far away to engage; without risking injury to innocent civilians," he said.
"Shortly after the helicopter arrived on station it located the enemy vehicle and destroyed it without damaging the homes around it," Johnson said.
"My platoon performed very well. We outgunned and outperformed the terrorists in every phase of this engagement," he said.