Report from Kuwait--Part Three - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

12/10/02

Report from Kuwait--Part Three

Sandbags are used to train for trench warfare in the desert. Sandbags are used to train for trench warfare in the desert.
Covering the advancing troops. Covering the advancing troops.
Soldiers prepare to enter a room they've cleared with a grenade. Soldiers prepare to enter a room they've cleared with a grenade.

The tanks and Bradleys and all the heavy equipment might get all the attention, but after all, it is the Third Infantry Division. And if they have to go to war, they are ground pounders, and the war will quite literally be won or lost in bunkers and trenches. So that's what they're training for.

"Secret to that is a lot of training," Sgt. James Barker said. "Getting to know the people, to be able to do it without talking. That's the main thing. Know what the person's doing."

Barker describes the exercise: "Right now we are suppressing this bunker so my bravo team can move up. Throw a grenade, take the bunker out."

A traditional fight in the trenches is one thing, but if this fight moves north to Iraq, it could turn into a bloody house-to-house battle in Baghdad. The troops are training for that as well.

"We're preparing for MOUT operations, or urban operations, just in case we were asked to go into Baghdad," said SSgt. Terry Miles. "Then we could enter the cities and be able to succeed in our mission. Going into an urban operation, it's real tight, small spaces sometimes."

The operation has soldiers crowding into small rooms, training to kick in the door and clear the next room rapidly.

"It's a lot different than training out in the open desert," Miles said. "We do this about twice a day, prior to going to eat chow in the morning and at night. We just keep reiterating the same things over and over so all the guys know each other man's job as we enter and clear a building."

Reported by: Mike Manhatton, mmanhatton@wtoc.com

Mike will be filing reports from the Middle East all this week on THE News.

 

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