Sunday, November 28, 2010

To the Best of Our Knowledge: Boots on the Ground

Boots on the Ground
To the Best of Our Knowledge (Wisonsin Public Radio)

Iraq. April 6, 2004. This day marked the Marines' heaviest fighting since Vietnam and was the start of the Iraqi insurgency. By the end of the day more than 40 Marines and hundreds of Iraqis were dead. In this hour of To the Best of Our Knowledge, a day that transformed the war in Iraq. General Sanchez, commander of US forces that day, will give us his perspective. And, we'll talk with the Marines who were there about a day they'll never forget.


This hour takes a look back at one momentous day during the war in Iraq: April 6, 2004 saw the birth of the Iraqi insurgency and the heaviest fighting the U.S. Marines had encountered since Vietnam. Donovan Campbell commanded a platoon of Marines in Ramadi. He tells Steve Paulson that to understand the events of April 6, you have to know what went on the night before. He also tells the story in his memoir, "Joker One."


Lieutenant General Ricardo Sanchez served as Commander of Coalition Forces in Iraq from June 2003 to June 2004. He shared power with Paul Bremer, the Administrator of the Coalition Provisional Authority. Sanchez commanded Coalition Forces during the capture of Saddam Hussein, the revelation about Abu Ghraib and on April 6, 2004. His memoir is called "Wiser in Battle: A Soldier's Story." General Sanchez recalled his service in this candid discussion with Steve Paulson.


Steve Levin is the producer of a documentary film, "Jerabek," which follows the family of a young Marine killed in the ambush at ar-Ramadi on April 6, 2004. Levin talks with Anne Strainchamps about his film and its subject - Ryan Jerabek, his family and community. Also, journalist David Swanson was embedded in ar-Ramadi with Ryan Jerabek's unit the day Ryan died. He tells Jim Fleming the Marines knew that location was dangerous and resented having to patrol there every day at the same time. David Swanson is a staff photographer at the Philadelphia Inquirer. His war photography is available HERE.

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