Colonel Michael Whitehead on the ramparts of Al Ukaydir, western Karbala, Iraq
From: Whitehead, Michael (USA) Sent: Wednesday, December 10, 2003 8:46 AM Subject: The fort at Al Ukaydir
In western Karbala province yesterday we drove by this fort in the middle of the desert in the middle of nowhere. This fort was first constructed by invading Arabs in the 9th century, and recently rebuilt by our old friend Saddam. This was a very interesting place to visit, and we were all thrilled to be there.
- Excerpt from "Messages from Babylon"
The Polish in Karbala had warned us that the ammunition supply point (ASP) in western Karbala was a source of explosives for the insurgents. Intelligence suspected that insurgents from Fallujah were traveling to this ASP to pick up parts for their IED's. I believed at the time that this ammunition was being used to attacke 82nd Airborne troops in Al Anbar province. I reported this and other problems to Baghdad.
Loose ammunition at the ammunition supply point in western Karbala
At the front entrance to the Al Ukaydir fort
76mm shells lying in the open at the ASP in western Karbala
Me at the guard post for the ASP. LT Tamara Montgomery and a Polish soldier are at right.
Iraqi guards for the ASP. They had few weapons, little ammunition or transport, and no radios.
Jim Williams and Bede Strong at Al Ukaydir.
The arches at the front entrance to Al Ukaydir. This old fort was rebuilt by Saddam.
MICHAEL WHITEHEAD, Author & Writer Web Design: Sara Whitehead Technical Consultant: Lindsey Whitehead