Thursday, March 16, 2006

Early fruits of Operation Swarmer

Yesterday, near Balad, U.S. forces landed in helicopters, raided a house, and took away one man. Then American warplanes and armor flattened the house, killing eleven people inside, including five children. AP photos showed the victims covered in dust and bits of rubble.

The U.S. military is marking the three-year invasion anniversary in its own way, with the largest air assault since 2003, in the area north of Baghdad.

Update: The post title is misleading. 'Operation Swarmer' seems to be a photo op involving many helicopters, a slew of embedded reporters, and no fixed-wing aircraft, with no resistance and not much shooting of any kind. The Balad episode is far more typical of the day-to-day counterinsurgency war, and happened a day before the Potemkin offensive (another p.r. goal of which may have been to disassociate helicopters and planes with bombing).



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