Pentagon: "Reason to Believe" Missing Troops May Be Alive! (Video)
** The US announced today that they have reason to believe that the missing US soldiers in Iraq are still alive!
Rescue teams said they have received over 140 tips on the soldier’s disappearance.
One general, Brig. Gen. Perry Wiggins says that he has more information than he is willing to talk about. He says he does not want to get into specifics because he wants to bring the soldiers back safe and sound to their families.
Wiggins said credible intelligence points to al Qaeda or an associated group as the abductors.
He described the scope of the search for the missing troops, which includes thousands of U.S. soldiers and their Iraqi counterparts. “We are using all intelligence resources at our disposal, including aerial platforms and human intelligence teams,” he said.
In addition, checkpoints set up throughout the area are helping focus the search and prevent the captors from attempting to transport the missing soldiers, he said.
Wiggins declined to give additional specifics about the search that could jeopardize the operation but assured reporters no stone will go unturned until the soldiers are found.
“It is important for the American people to know that we are using every asset and resource available to the United States and Iraqi partners in our efforts to find our soldiers,” he said.
“As a soldier myself who has commanded in Iraq, I can assure the American people, particularly the families of the missing soldiers, that we are committed to the soldier’s creed of never leaving a fallen comrade,” Wiggins said. “And I know that every soldier involved in the search is living by that creed as well and doing everything they can to find these brave soldiers.”
The four other soldiers are Sgt. Anthony J. Schober, 23, of Reno, Nev.; Spc. Alex R. Jimenez, 25, of Lawrence, Mass.; Pfc. Joseph J. Anzack Jr., 20, of Torrance, Calif.; and Pvt. Byron W. Fouty, 19, of Waterford, Mich. The Pentagon said one of those four was among the dead, but it could not confirm which one.
Ft. Drum soldiers said: “The capture of three 10th Mountain Division soldiers by insurgent forces in Iraq will only unite America and strengthen the military’s determination.” –The New York Times
U.S. Army Spc. Alex Jimenez, 24, from Lawrence, Mass., of Delta Company, 4th Battalion, 31st Infantry Regiment has an audience of Iraqi soldiers as he lifts weights near Youssifiyah, 12 miles (20 kilometers) south of Baghdad, Iraq in this Monday, Feb. 5, 2007 file photo. Jimenez has been identified as by the Pentagon as among those whose whereabouts are unknown after a May 12, 2007 ambush in Iraq. The attack near Mahmoudiya, in a Sunni stronghold 20 miles south of Baghdad, left four U.S. soldiers and an Iraqi translator dead, and three other soldiers missing. (AP Photo/Maya Alleruzzo)
In an October, 2006 photo provided by Cathy Conger of Waterford Township, Mich., Pvt. Byron W. Fouty is shown. Fouty is among the seven soldiers whom the Pentagon identified Tuesday, May 15, 2007, as either missing or confirmed dead after the ambush near Mahmoudiya, 20 miles south of Baghdad, Saturday, May 5. (AP Photo/Photo courtesy of Cathy Conger)
Sgt. Anthony J. Schober, 23, of Reno, Nev. is one of the soldiers missing after the attack outside of Mahmoudiya on Saturday. (KTVN)
HotAir has more on this latest development on the missing soldiers.
UPDATE: (Thursday AM) The New York Times reported this morning that US military equipment has been recovered on detained Iraqis who admit to have taken part in the ambush!
And more on the attack:
He said 12 to 15 soldiers in Humvees were stationed about 450 to 550 yards to the north of the site, and a dozen or so more were about 875 yards to the south. Both groups of soldiers drove to help their comrades after hearing the explosion, and pilotless aircraft discovered the burning vehicles, he said.
It was unclear how the Humvees had been attacked, though commanders suspected that grenades or rocket-propelled grenades had been involved.
The group to the north discovered crushed wire and two bombs on their way to the burning vehicles. The group from the south also found a bomb.
Colonel Infanti said the soldiers had gotten out of their Humvees and moved on foot to where the attack occurred as rounds of ammunition popped from the burning vehicles. By the time the first group from the south arrived, the three soldiers were gone.
Commanders described the attack as “complex.” Concertina wire around the two Humvees had been breached, and shell casings around the vehicles suggested that the soldiers had put up a fight. That forensic evidence, Colonel Infanti said, was all they could pick up at the scene.
UPDATE 2:trong> (Thursday AM) Michelle Malkin has the latest on the missing soldiers.
ONE REPORT SAYS… The missing soldiers were dragged from their humvees about 45 feet to another vehicle. I assume this means they were badly hurt.
5 US Soldiers Killed… 3 Missing in Mahmoudiya
Al Qaeda Claims It Is Holding Missing US “Crusader” Soldiers!!
Al Qaeda Says It Will Align Itself With Democrats
Al Qaeda Warns US to Stop Searching For Missing Soldiers
Captured US Soldiers in Iraq Are From Ft. Drum
Pentagon Releases Information on Missing Soldiers