All 32 helicopters sustained some damage

Louis Proyect lnp3 at
Mon Mar 24 09:26:47 MST 2003

NY Times, Mar. 24, 2003
2 Apaches Are Down and 30 Others Retreat in Central Iraq

IN CENTRAL IRAQ, March 24 - With a hail of small arms fire and
rocket-propelled grenades, Iraqi forces downed two Apache helicopters
today and forced 30 other helicopters in their brigade back to their base.

One two-member crew was unaccounted for; the other was rescued. Iraqi
state television broadcast images of one downed helicopter, which
appeared largely intact, and jubilant men dancing around it.

All 32 helicopters sustained some damage, occasionally slight, Army
officials said, in what was a significant setback for the allies.

The attack surprised American Army leaders and may cause them to rethink
their military strategy, which relied on the Apaches to destroy Iraq's
armored divisions that ring Baghdad.

The commander of the American-led invasion of Iraq confirmed the loss of
one Apache helicopter.



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