Tuesday, August 23, 2005
LTC Kurilla & Other Mil-related posts
The Commander of Deuce Four, LTC Erik Kurilla, was shot three times in combat yesterday in front of my eyes. Despite being seriously wounded, LTC Kurilla immediately rejoined the intense and close-quarter fight that ended in hand-to-hand combat. LTC Kurilla continued to direct his men until a medic gave him morphine and the men took him away.
Michael Gilbert reports for The News Tribune.com on the status of LTC Kurilla (referencing Yon):
Army Lt. Col. Erik Kurilla arrived at Madigan Army Medical Center late Monday for treatment of wounds he suffered Friday in a firefight in Mosul, Iraq. Officials said Kurilla, commander of the 1st Battalion, 24th Infantry Regiment, was shot in the arm and leg and suffered a broken leg. He was reported in stable condition.
The brigade’s rear detachment commander, Maj. Nicholas Mullen, confirmed Monday that Kurilla had been shot near the elbow and in one leg. It was the other leg that was broken, he said.
For news reporters, Kurilla has been like a character straight out of central casting: big, fierce and gung-ho. In one recent dispatch, Yon described how Kurilla walked out into the middle of a street, under fire, and dragged a detainee into cover. His men had inadvertently left the captured man sitting in the open. In other dispatches Yon has described how Kurilla climbed into burning Strykers to pull his wounded men to safety.
Kurilla is a 1988 West Point graduate and a veteran of the U.S. invasion of Panama, the first Persian Gulf war, Operation Uphold Democracy in Haiti and the U.S.-led interventions in Bosnia and Kosovo. [Hattip Stryker Brigade News]
Holy shmokes! This guy eats danger live at a Sunday buffet.
365 & Wake Up has an interesting and beautiful post on various areas of Baghdad. My favorite part is his discussion of the shantytowns:
Shantytowns sprout like weeds in the oil soaked wasteland bordering the major expressways...The buildings themselves are ugly, utilitarian affairs that line narrow alleyways strewn with trash, but their brusque lines are softened by the throngs of laughing children.
The braver children will approach and try to practice their English skills, which usually revolves around the phrase “Mr., Mr., Saddam is a dork”.
If you believe the Coalition forces are doing nothing but sitting around waiting for an IED to drop on their heads or that the only thing happening in Iraq is that things are getting blown-up, then I consider you obligated to read this synopsis for CENTCOM's published activities from the previous week (start from the bottom and work your way up it will be more interesting that way). In addition to high profile arrests, detective work, and cooperation from the Sunni Arab civilians, it lists $10s of millions of completed projects in the Sunni Triangle. It also lists this one:
- $13 m (ka-ching!) In Sadr City (where SPC Casey Sheehan died on Black Sunday 4/4/04) a reconstruction project was started that includes an electrical distribution project for sectors 1-8 to provide an estimated 128,000 people will have a reliable source of electricity (power lines, 3,040 power poles, 80 transformers, 2,400 street lights, and power connections to individual homes, complete with meters).