U.S. commanders in Iraq have released dramatic video showing a car containing Al Qaeda operatives being blown up by hellfire missiles attached to Apache attack helicopters.
The car was destroyed in the mission that military officials say demonstrates greater cooperation between locals and coalition forces in Iraq.
One of the terrorists killed in the attack on Sunday is an insurgent who had been imprisoned on Nov. 11 but released shortly afterward. He conducted two attacks on U.S. and coalition forces, including one on Thanksgiving, before being killed, officials said.
One of the "high value" individuals targeted "is believed to be an Al Qaeda cell leader known to facilitate attacks and orchestrate suicide bomb attacks," said Major Alayne Conway, a spokeswoman with the 3rd Infantry Division in Iraq. "He was also involved in attacks against forces in 3rd Brigade's area of operations. One of his most well-known attacks was a vehicle-borne IED against the Australian Embassy."
Local Iraqis gave coalition forces the tip that led to the targeting, officials said. Prior to the hit, the men had been observed crossing the Tigris River southeast of Baghdad. After leaving the boat dock, they had walked around a building on a farm for a few minutes then proceeded to a parked car. Five men got in the car and two others went to a second car located nearby. When the first vehicle had car trouble the two drove their car over to the first. As many as six of the insurgents were killed.
The day we struck the vehicles containing the men, locals gave CF tips reporting his location and movement. Both the 2nd and 3rd Brigades of the 3rd Infantry Division quickly worked together to confirm the precise location of the terrorists and bring in an air weapons team to destroy the target," Conway said.
“Today’s engagement is an example of two surge brigades sharing information faster than the insurgents can react,” said Maj. Dave Fivecoat, from Delaware, Ohio, operations officer for the 3rd Heavy Brigade Combat Team of the 3rd ID. “Our efforts to destroy Al Qaeda forces continue to improve the security" of the region.