From Bill Putnam: On the surface, these two photos aren't anything special or probably newsworthy. They are photos of a sectarian massacre though. Insurgents stopped two busses carrying employees home from work at the Bayji Oil Refinery thermal plant the afternoon of March 31. They pulled nine men off -- six Shia and three Sunnis -- and shot them. All of the Shia and two Sunni died; one Sunni man lived and at last word is still in hospital. The circumstances behind this are obviously a little murky. Penetrating that murkiness is proving a little difficult for the 1st of the 187th Infantry. An official from the Iraqi Ministry of Oil arrived at the refinery the afternoon these photos were made. His drive up from Baghdad was faster than his investigation. No sooner than he arrived at the scene did he surmise it was the "work of insurgents" and concluded it. The next day 17 Shia families started an exodus out of Bayji that continues today. Staff Sgt. Jeremy Shields, 1st Lt. Dave Elliott and Alex the Terp, look at the scene April 2, 2006. A bullet casing from an AK-47 the insurgents used to execute the men. This third photo isn't related directly anyway to the massacre photos. Someone parked a car bomb on Highway 1, the country's main north-south highway which also runs through Bayji. The target was an Iraqi army Security Infrastructure Battalion convoy. The bomb wasn't the suicide version (no body parts found in the debris field) and the SIB didn't take any casualties.
From Bill Putnam: I'm back in Bayji, Iraq, and re-embedded with Abu Co., 1st of the 187th Infantry. I was last with the unit in November and December. It's been the best embed I've had in Iraq, period.
A junedi and soldier listen to a chicken farmer talk about an attack on a near-by Iraqi army and Iraqi Police checkpoint during a joint US-Iraqi patrol March 6, 2006.
A junedi walks along a farm field during a joint US-Iraqi patrol near Ad Dawr, Iraq, March 6, 2006.
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