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3rd LAR searches desert for insurgent activity

ANBAR PROVINCE, Iraq (Feb. 17, 2008) -- If you disrupt a body’s blood supply it will fail to function. The same goes for insurgent activity.


Feb. 17, 2008; Submitted on: 03/09/2008 11:18:36 AM ; Story ID#: 200839111836
By Lance Cpl. Paul Torres, 1st Marine Division

Marines and other Coalition forces have been busy disrupting enemy activity in the Northern provinces of Iraq during Operation Desert Siege.

“We are conducting cordon and searches in all settlements to deny the enemy staging areas for weapons and personnel,” said 2nd Lt. Austin C. Murnane, 23, from Millwood, N.Y., who is a platoon commander for 3rd Platoon, Company C, 3rd Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion.

“During the first search, we cleared all the buildings as safe,” said Sgt. Jesse R. Walden, 23, from Muskogee, Okla., who is a squad leader with 3rd Platoon, Company C. “During the second search, we double checked the buildings for extra weapons, magazines, home-made explosives and propaganda.”

Propaganda is evidence of an insurgent influence in that area.
While searching one town, the Marines were able to inquire about insurgent activity in the area.

“When we tactically question the personnel in the town, I am giving them an opportunity to provide us with information that would help us make the area safer,” said Murnane. “It is also an opportunity for us to build a rapport with the locals. My scouts and I have spoken with a number of Iraqi civilians in this area, and they have said since the Iraqi Police, the Iraqi Army and the Marines have been patrolling through the area, they have seen no terrorist activity.”

Finding large weapons caches has been few and far between. Usually the Marines find small things like a household with too many weapon magazines or an extra AK-47 rifle.

“Not finding anything is not necessarily a bad thing,” said Murnane.
3rd LAR will continue this operation and hopes to eliminate more insurgent threats in the area.

“We are making the towns that much safer by cutting off the supply routes, said Walden”