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Thursday, October 14, 2004

Golden Dragons: B Co in Samarra

October 14, 2004
B Co in Samarra
Soldiers maintain security and win over residents on the streets of Samarra

SAMARRA, Iraq – Soldiers with B Company, 1st Battalion, 14th Infantry walk through the streets, accompanied by two gun trucks. During the mission, time is made to speak with members of a youth soccer team and buy ice cream cones for grateful children.

Company leaders speak with merchants offering everything from watermelon to hubcaps. Virtually every resident stops and stares at the passing throng, most of them smiling and waving. After an hour on patrol, the Soldiers turn and head back to their forward operating base.

The situation would be unremarkable, if not for the location. Less than two weeks prior, anti-Iraq forces controlled Samarra and most of the residents stayed inside out of fear.

“We couldn’t have walked through this area a week ago without being shot up with RPGs,” said 1st Lt. Greg Longo, a B 1-14 platoon leader from Calumet, Mich.

Golden Dragons: B Co in Samarra

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