Task Force Liberty soldier dies in battle near Balad
A series of raids and skirmishes over the weekend in Iraq left at least one U.S. soldier dead and dozens of suspected insurgents in custody, military officials said Monday.
A soldier with Task Force Liberty — the name used for the units that fall under the command of the 42nd Infantry Division in north-central Iraq — was killed and two others wounded by “an indirect fire attack on a coalition forces base near Balad” on Sunday afternoon.
One wounded soldier was hospitalized while the other returned to duty after treatment, the U.S. military command in Baghdad said.
Indirect fire refers to mortar or rocket attacks.
Further north in Mosul, soldiers from the 1st Brigade, 25th Infantry Division seized a weapons cache and arrested a suspected insurgent in weekend raids.
The man, suspected of unspecified “terrorist activity,” was arrested in northeastern Mosul, the military said. The weapons were also seized in Mosul and will be destroyed.
In Baghdad, soldiers arrested two men who apparently planted a large roadside bomb packed with nails, officials said.
“The bomb, found near the side of a dirt road, appeared to be a 5-foot-square black box with nails pointing upward and wire attached,” read a 3rd Infantry Division news release.
Soldiers detained a man near where they found the bomb, and he led to them to a house and a second man. During a search of the house, the soldiers allegedly found four pipe bombs, detonators and a machine gun.
After searching further, the soldiers reportedly found seven gas masks, night-vision goggles, an empty rocket tube, three spent artillery shells “and a large box of nails which were the same as the ones found earlier on the roadside bomb.”