Fifteen years of war have turned Iraqi cities such as Ramadi, Fallujah, and Mosul into ruins. Iraq remains as divided as ever along sectarian lines, despite the deaths of more than 4,500 U.S. troops and untold numbers of Iraqis.
Nearly 15 years after the U.S. military toppled Iraqi president Saddam Hussein, the U.S. government is replaying its post-invasion script that only a few isolated groups of fighters remain in Iraq. After two suicide bombers killed more than 30 people in Baghdad on Jan. 15, a U.S. commander in Iraq said it is too early to determine whether ISIS has morphed into an insurgency.
“Can you believe this is only our day four here?” a corporal asks from his turret, more to himself than to the specialist in the turret next to him. They’re in an alleyway in the sprawling Baghdad suburb of Sadr City, straddling their up-armored Humvees, facing opposite directions, to cover the avenues of approach. They’re positioned in front of a three-story house where their platoon-mates regrouped in the aftermath of an ambush that killed one of their number — Sgt. Yihjyh “Eddie” Chen, 31, from Saipan — and left the unit cut off and surrounded.
Screengrab via National Geographic's "The Long Road Home"
Days after releasing an emotionally charged new trailer for The Long Road Home, National Geographic is unveiling another look at the upcoming miniseries about a routine patrol that went sideways in Sadr City in 2004. The new two minute-long teaser, provided exclusively to Task & Purpose, focuses on the toll deployments can take on the military families and spouses who remain behind when their loved ones go off to war.
A major American contractor in Iraq is engaging in rampant fraud, waste, and abuse involving prostitution rings, alcohol smuggling operations, and giving militias virtually free rein of a major base, according to two if its former employees.