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Brave American National Guard Soldiers of 2nd Battalion 136th US Infanty Regiment, dismount form their Bradley Fighting Vehicles and Up-Armored HMMWV's to search through another Iraqi village and clear it of any possible insurgents or Al Qaeida operatives.
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2-136 IN completed over 3,500 patrols in 16 months of combat operations. This included 1,548 dismounted patrols, searches of over 6,193 vehicles, 14,665 people and 1,039 buildings. The patrols resulted in the processing of over 259 detainees and the discovery of 23 significant weapons caches and 174 improvised explosive devices (IED). While on patrol, 2-136 IN sustained over 83 small arms attacks, six complex attacks, five rocket propelled grenade (RPG) attacks, 119 indirect fire attacks and 55 IED strikes.
Patrols covered both the Battalion sector surrounding the east and southern region of Lake Habbaniyah as well as the B Co sector surrounding Camp Fallujah. The Battalion sector, AO OSHKOSH, along with other assigned battle space encompassed an area of over 500 square kilometers and contained over 80 kilometers of the main supply route. At Camp Fallujah, B Co supported the Marine Expeditionary Force (MEF) Headquarters Group manning two combat outposts and conducted daily patrols in a 52 square kilometer area of operations. Through aggressive patrolling, the Battalion reduced the overall IED activity in its sector by 80%. Countless lives and millions of dollars were saved due to the reduction in damaged or destroyed vehicles from IED blasts.
2-136 IN completed over 28 major named operations over the course of conducting combat operations (the most significant operations are listed). OPERATION SPLIT HAND was a continuous operation employing counter-IED patrols, sniper teams, and observation posts to identify and defeat enemy IED teams. In August 2006, 2-136 IN witnessed the most coordinated enemy attack against Battalion forces. While securing a key infrastructure site south of Fallujah, two squads came under significant enemy fire. Attacking from all four directions, 30 insurgents drove two trucks and utilized machinegun fire, small arms fire and over 50 grenades to assault the position. The Soldiers returned fire with over 1,700 rounds of 50 caliber machine gun ammunition and called in eight 120mm high explosive rounds which were fired by the Battalion Mortar Platoon. Throughout the attack, the enemy persisted in engaging the Quick Reaction Force (QRF) with IEDs. The Bearcats continued to repel the attack and were able to effectively defeat the enemy and maintain security of the site.
2-136 IN conducted OPERATION SLEDGEHAMMER, a ten day operation to cordon and search known enemy safe havens in an area south of Fallujah. Utilizing combat patrols and the BN Mortar Platoon, the BN found three caches, two detainees, and one enemy KIA. OPERATION LIGHTNING STRIKE, a counter-IED operation, resulted in the identification of an IED team and the detainment of 11 enemy personnel. OPERATION THREE SWORDS, a three day cordon and search mission south of Fallujah, was hugely successful and received national publicity in the US and numerous accolades from the MNF-W commander. The operation netted multiple caches, seventeen IEDs, vehicle mounted anti-aircraft guns, several enemy vehicles and led to the discovery of an enemy torture house and the rescue of three local nationals who were shackled inside the house and near death. OPERATIONS DOJO and DOJO II were the cordon and search of Al Zaidon Village to deny the use of historical mortar sites by the enemy. These operations resulted in the discovery of 16 IEDs and four weapon caches, the detainment of 10 enemy personnel, the killing of six insurgents and the significant reduction of indirect fire on Camp Fallujah. In March 2007 the Battalion conducting screening and blocking positions around Fallujah for OPERATION ZAIDON II with Marine Regimental Combat Team Six. In April 2007 OPERATION FARDH AL QANOON was completed with the 3rd Marine Recon Battalion to deny enemy sanctuary in the southern Lake THAR THAR region.
The Battalion Mortar platoon conducted over 500 fire missions in support of the 2-136 IN, Marine Regimental Combat Team Five, and the 2nd and 3rd Marine Reconnaissance Battalion. Due to their skill, flexibility and outstanding capability to employ various types of weapons, the Mortar Platoon fired 60mm, 81mm and 120mm rounds from Camp Fallujah. During these fire missions, the Mortar platoon fired 230 high explosive rounds and 2,453 illumination rounds.
In May 2006, 2-136 IN created a Military Transition Team (MiTT) which consisted of 10 select Soldiers and one Navy Corpsman. The team attended two weeks of training at the Phoenix Academy in Taji, Iraq which focused on the specifics of the mission at hand, the advising and mentoring of an Iraqi Army (IA) Battalion and the integration of Counter Insurgency (COIN) operations. Designated the 2-3-7 MiTT, they reported to Al Qaim in June and were assigned to work with the 2nd Battalion, 3rd Brigade, 7th Iraqi Army Division. They were located in Rawah, Iraq from October 2006 to March of 2007.
In June 2006, 2-136 IN sent 138 Soldiers from A Co, 2-136 IN and C Co, 434th Main Support Battalion (MSB) to perform base defense operations at Camp Liberty. This outstanding group of Soldiers conducted hundreds of security patrols around Camp Liberty. During the operation of two Entry Control Points, they searched 342,000 vehicles and 176,000 civilian personnel. They also continuously manned five guard towers.
MINNESOTA TO ROUTE MICHIGAN - United States Armed Forces - Operation Iraqi Freedom , 2006-2007 A.D.