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June 6, 2013

War Stories: Crashing An Iraqi Wedding

If you want to catch a terrorist you have to locate him first, and the one place you know for a fact that he will be, is at is his own wedding.

By 2009, insurgents and terrorists in Iraq had gotten fairly wily. For years, the U.S. Special Operations Task Force had been churning through the enemy. I played a small part in that endeavor in 2005, as a Corporal in 3rd Ranger Battalion. We rolled outside the wire and into Mosul almost every night, often times conducting multiple direct action raids during a single period of darkness, before refitting and preparing to do it all over again.

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About the Author

is an eight year Army Special Operations veteran who served as a Sniper and Team Leader in 3rd Ranger Battalion and as a Senior Weapons Sergeant on a Military Free Fall team in 5th Special Forces Group. Having left the military in 2010, he graduated from Columbia with a BA in political science. Murphy is the author of Reflexive Fire, Target Deck, Direct Action, and numerous non-fiction articles about Weapons, Tactics, Special Operations, Terrorism, and Counter-Terrorism. He has appeared in documentaries, national television, and syndicated radio.

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  • gipbmac

    It was great reading this again! Great post - this site is so awesome - HUGE thanks to SOFREP Crew and all who write and post replies!!! Here's to a great 2015 and many more to come!

  • Archangel3285

    Small world Jack. I was a SAW gunner in Tal Afar right before you guys crashed the party. All of A co 1/5IN would have given anything to unfuck that city the way you guys did.

  • JackMurphyRGR

    NicholasP That's awesome, I'm sure we worked with a lot of the same people.  We're definitely lucky to have walked out of there intact.  In 2005 my platoon got back but with WIA's, not KIA's.  In 2009 we did pretty good despite hitting one IED.  My Jr. Bravo got knocked out but was good to go.

  • NicholasP

    Great story, I served on an ODA in Mosul 2006-07 and it was game on every single day.  We also used the Ninawa SWAT as our host nation partner force.  I found them to be a great bunch of guys, fearless and reliable.  I would love to hear more stories from Mosul.  I find it ironic that the city David Petraeus once declared a 'model' of success in 2003 would still be a hotbed of ISI insurgent activity well into 2013.  In 2006, we pleaded for more resources as ISI and AQ fighters began relocating to Mosul after being forced out of their hideouts further south due to the troop surge.  Follow the path of least resistance and after the removal of the Strykers to Baghdad the city was ripe for insurgents.  How we never lost a man or got blown up I'll honestly never know.  Thanks for the great article.

  • ThePatriots

    engelbrad When things slow down, I'll try to hook up with you guys and chat, soon. I miss my little mafia.