Sunday, June 10, 2007

Car bomber causes bridge collapse near Mahmudiyah; U.S. soldiers reported trapped in rubble

Above: Soldiers walk over a canal near Mahmudiyah, where today's attack took place. The area, known as the 'Triangle of Death', is also where an ambush on May 12th killed 5 and left 3 soldiers missing, one of whom was killed and left floating in the Euphrates. Two soldiers -- Byron Fouty and Alexander Jimenez -- still remain missing from that attack. The soldiers pictured above are from the search for them on May 25.

An apparent suicide car bomber took aim at a U.S. convoy carrying demolition experts on Sunday, collapsing a major highway overpass south of Baghdad and trapping American soldiers in the rubble.

The vehicle detonated beside a support pillar, bringing down an Army checkpoint and a tent that had been on the collapsing span, dubbed "Checkpoint 20" by the U.S. military. The overpass, one of two crossing over Iraq's main north-south highway in the region, appeared to be closed to all but military traffic at the time.

A U.S. Army quick reaction force and the staff of Armor Group International, a private security firm that was in charge of the passing convoy, worked for some 45 minutes to pull trapped men from the rubble about six miles east of Mahmoudiya.

There appeared to be several casualties, including an Iraqi interpreter who was wounded, according to Donald Campbell, an official with the security firm who was at the scene.

Read the rest at the Guardian