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Iraq

New 'get tough' policy razes Baghdad building

By Wire services
Published November 13, 2003

WASHINGTON - U.S. forces went on the offensive Wednesday in Iraq, demonstrating a new, more aggressive strategy in taking on increasingly bold insurgents.

One day after Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez, head of allied ground forces in Iraq, promised that "we're going to get pretty tough," U.S. forces flying in a AC-130 Spectre gunship leveled an empty warehouse identified as an insurgent rallying-and-storage point.

In another American strike, helicopters destroyed a van in western Baghdad, killing two Iraqis suspected of involvement in mortar attacks on coalition forces in the capital.

Military officials confirmed that the operations illustrated the new approach, also pointing to the recent use of satellite-directed bombs near Fallujah and Tikrit, Saddam Hussein's ancestral home. By directing disproportionate force against suspected guerrillas, U.S. forces hope to deter them and also to reassure a skittish domestic audience, military specialists said.

Study: Guardsmen having problems with pay

WASHINGTON - National Guard soldiers fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan are also battling with their own government over long delays and widespread errors in their paychecks, according to congressional auditors.

The General Accounting Office says in a study to be released today that some activated Army National Guard soldiers saw delays of up to three months in their pay, while others were overpaid an average of $48,000 and told later they had to pay it back.

Responding to the study, the Defense Department vowed to correct the problems and conduct a broader review to improve the systems involved.

U.S. repels attack outside Jordanian hospital

BAGHDAD - U.S. paratroopers killed six attackers and wounded four in a shootout outside the hospital run by the Jordanian government near the city of Fallujah, the Army's 82nd Airborne Division said Wednesday.

Four people were detained, the division said. There were no American casualties.

Bush may see antiwar protesters in London

LONDON - Security worries are more serious for President Bush's upcoming trip to Britain than previous presidential visits, but some antiwar protesters may still be allowed to get close enough for Bush to see them, police said Wednesday.

Terror attacks around the world mean fears for the president's safety are greater than for his predecessors who visited London, said London police Deputy Assistant Commissioner Andy Trotter. But he emphasized that police would not use security as an excuse to keep Bush from seeing those who disagree with him.

Also...

U.S. WOUNDS OFFICIAL'S DRIVER: U.S. troops in Baghdad on Wednesday accidentally fired on a car carrying Mohammed Bahr al-Uloun, a member of the Iraqi Governing Council, wounding his driver.

ATTACK IN MOSUL: Assailants fired rocket-propelled grenades and small arms at an American military compound in Mosul on Wednesday, killing an Iraqi paramilitary guard.

TWO SOLDIERS DIE: An American soldier was killed when a roadside bomb exploded near a patrol by the town of Taji northwest of Baghdad, and another died of wounds suffered in a roadside bombing in Baghdad. The deaths bring to 153 the number of U.S. soldiers killed by hostile fire since President Bush declared an end to major combat May 1.


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