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Highlanders, Fix Bayonets! - Tartan Day Gathering of the Blogs

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It's good to have friends like Professional Soldiers from the United Kingdom or El Salvador doing their part in Iraq.

This story from May 16, 2004, sent by Michael, is going to make every former, current, and future warrior stand up and salute. Michael wrote that the story "...makes the hair stand up on my neck."

web5a

Argylls fight hand to hand in Iraq
BRIAN BRADY
WESTMINSTER EDITOR

SCOTTISH troops fixed bayonets and fought hand to hand with a Shi’ite militia in southern Iraq in one of their fiercest clashes since the war was declared more than a year ago, it was reported last night.

Soldiers from the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders mounted what were described as "classic infantry assaults" on firing and mortar positions held by more than 100 fighters loyal to the outlawed cleric Moqtada al-Sadr, according to military sources.
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"It was very bloody and it was difficult to count all their dead," one source was quoted as saying. "There were bodies floating in the river."

The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders were drawn into the fighting when soldiers in two Land-Rovers were ambushed on Friday afternoon about 15 miles east of the city of Amara. The soldiers escaped, only to be ambushed a second time by a larger group of militia, armed with machine-guns, rocket-propelled grenades and mortars.

Reinforcements were summoned from the Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment at a base nearby. "There was some pretty fierce hand-to-hand fighting with bayonets fixed," the source added. "There were some classic assaults on mortar positions held by the al-Sadr forces."

Official spokesman Major Ian Clooney confirmed the Mehdi army "took a pretty heavy knocking", but refused to specify tactics. "This was certainly an intense engagement," he added....

Update: There are some reports (one I found was in the Sun UK) was that the Argylls were ambushed - Land Rover Convoy - so they dismounted and attacked in a classic military maneuver.

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