the battle of 73 easting casualties

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Hundreds of Iraqi infantrymen and their lightly armored transporters lay scattered on the wadi floor. The battle of 73 Easting, 26 February 1991: A historical introduction to a simulation Captain Dan Miller, commanding I Troop, silenced the resistance with return fire then attacked to the 70 Easting. "Ghost Troop, Battle at 73 Easting." Pilots reported large massings of enemy forces there: Medina was reinforced by elements of the 17th, 12th, 10th and 52nd Armored Divisions, which had been retreating north. It consisted of 4,500 men divided into five squadrons three ground squadrons made up mostly of M1A1 Abrams tanks and Bradley fighting vehicles; an aviation sq… Estimates vary on the exact number of casualties due to certain incidents of friendly fire, but the Iraqi damage is estimated at almost 1,000 soldiers killed in action and more than 1,000 taken prisoner. In what has since been dubbed the Battle of Norfolk, they crossed the remaining ten kilometers to their objective, Objective Norfolk, over the next three hours. [10][11] The troop returned fire with its Abramses and Bradleys, silenced the Iraqi guns, took prisoners, and continued east with the two tank platoons leading. The 2nd ACR's limit of advance changed during the operation. The 12th Armored Division's assignment to the Republican Guard was not known at the time of the engagement.[5]. Captain McMaster, leading the attack, immediately engaged that position, destroying the first of the eight enemy tanks to his front. Also, the optics on the American vehicles allowed for “dark” engagements, meaning that the vehicles could fight at night and didn’t necessarily need a clear line of sight to engage. In the ensuing battle, many American units advanced past Iraqi tanks and crews, who were in shelters or had not yet turned on their engines and so did not appear to be threats in the American crew's thermal sights. Orlansky and J Thorpe, editors, IDA Doc D-1110, IDA, Alexandria VA, April 1992. Individual and unit experiences in the same battle often vary widely. While advancing, the regiment was to clear out any enemy security forces and neutralize the Republican Guard. During that engagement, TOW missile fire from a K Troop Bradley struck and destroyed an I Troop Bradley wounding all three crewmen. Again, the Iraqis did not run or surrender, but manned their vehicles and weapons to face the advancing Americans. The stunning performance of American troops in the battle is taught as doctrine to this day. The American vehicles, on the other hand, possess “sloped” or “angled” armor that stood a much higher chance of deflecting enemy projectiles. The number of vehicles damaged by artillery was greater. Individual and unit experiences in the same battle often vary widely. [1] The corps' main body consisted of the American 3rd Armored Division (3rd AD) and 1st Infantry Division (1st ID) and 1st Armored Division (1st AD), and the British 1st Armoured Division (1 AD). [21] The violent battle at 73 Easting fixed the southern forces of the Iraqi Republican Guard Corps and permitted the Corps Commander to launch First Infantry Division into the depths of the Iraqi defenses and on into Kuwait. Iraqi T-62 knocked out by 3rd Armored Division fire. Moving through the Republican Guards' security area on the morning of the 26th, the Regiment encountered Iraq's heavily armored Tawakalna Division [4] in the north and the 12th Iraqi Armored Division in the center and south. The regiment’s advance was led by its scouts in M3A1 Bradleys. Articles incorporating text from Wikipedia, http://www.scribd.com/doc/9703733/73-Easting-Info, "The last battle of division Tawakalna, jewel of the Republican Guard", http://www.militaryphotos.net/forums/showthread.php?16927-The-Last-Stand-Of-The-Tawakalna-Gulf-War-I, http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/world/iraq/tawakalna.htm, The Battle of 73 Easting and the Road to the Synthetic Battlefield, https://military.wikia.org/wiki/Battle_of_73_Easting?oldid=3947591. [19] The 210th FA Brigade Commander estimated that his two FA battalions and single MLRS battery destroyed 17 tanks, seven APCs, six artillery pieces and around 70 other vehicles. All Iraqi units occupied well-constructed defensive emplacements and had prepared alternate positions which enabled them to reorient to the west to face VII Corps’s attack. The primary tanks used by the Iraqis were the model T-55, T-62, and T-72. Massive troop desertions and surrenders were a common sight across the Iraqi landscape. The 2nd ACR's limit of advance changed during the operation. The Battle of 73 Easting refers narrowly to the violent armored combat action that took place in the final hours of 2nd ACR's covering force operation in the zone of Second Squadron and in the northern third of the Third Squadron zone. Michael D. Krause, “The Battle of 73 Easting, 26 February 1991”, A Joint Center of Military History and Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency Project, 24 May 1991, “Extract of the Second Armored Cavalry Regiment’s Operations Log”, Second Armored Cavalry, ca. Gary Bloedorn, Institute for Defense Analysis, “Data Collection Methodology”; Major Douglas Lute, Headquarters Department of the Army, “The Battle of 73 Easting: The Regiment’s Perspective”), “Extract of the Second Armored Cavalry Regiment’s Operations Log”, Headquarters Second Armored Cavalry, ca. During the six-hour battle, the G Troop fire support team called in 720 howitzer and MLRS rounds while using its own mortars continually to turn back attackers at close range. Far from the textbook actions and decisions of H.R. The Battle of 73 Easting did not last long. Lt Colonel Tony Isaac’s First Squadron meanwhile encountered scattered enemy positions in the south and by noon had reported destroying twenty-three T-55 tanks, twenty-five armored personnel carriers, six artillery pieces and numerous trucks. [8] The Iraqi resistance that 2ACR met on the previous day had been from the 50th Armored Brigade whose mission had been to cover the preparation of that defense. Far from the textbook actions and decisions of H.R. At the same time the Third and First squadrons in the center and south moved to clear their zones, encountering T-72s in Third Squadron’s north and T-62 and T-55 tanks of the Iraqi 12th Armored Division further south.[6]. First Squadron, the Regiment’s southernmost squadron cleared its zone of remnants of the 50th Armored Brigade before making contact with the 37th Brigade of the 12th Iraqi Armored Division, fighting to the south of the Tawakalna Division. Army historians and simulation modelers thoroughly interviewed the American participants, and paced the battlefield meter by meter. Janus Simulation Results Battle of 73 Easting. [16], Artillery fire and air strikes played a large role in the battle, especially in the far north. Lt General Franks therefore directed the Second Armored Cavalry to continue its attack as far as the 70 Easting and to make contact with the Republican Guard’s main defenses and prevent their movement. The Battle of 73 Easting, Gulf War : papers concerning the simulation project, M1451. The visibility was almost zero because of dust storms and nightfall. Twenty-five years ago, the Battle of 73 Easting pit just part of the U.S. Army’s 2nd Armored Cavalry Regiment against Saddam Hussein’s elite Iraqi Republican Guard. The battle took place about 60 miles (97 km) east of and 18 hours after the Battle of Al Busayyah, and several kilometers east of the Battle of 73 Easting, which had ended just two hours earlier. Each of these vehicles has a manual form of targeting, which is far slower to operate than that of the Abrams and the Bradleys. In response, These staggering figures came at a cost of a mere 12 Americans killed in action. Lt General Franks accepted that recommendation and, beginning around 2 a.m. two brigades of the 1st Infantry Division passed through the Regiment’s positions along the 70 Easting. The brigade commander, Colonel David Weisman, decided to pull the battalions back, consolidate, and use his artillery to destroy the aggressive Iraqi infantry. To remedy the emergency, Lt Colonel Kobbe sent his tank company, Captain Bruce Tyler’s Company H (“Hawk”), to relieve the troop. The mechanized force was brought to its knees with minimal American casualties. The results of this endeavor, culminating in the SimNet 73 Easting Battle Re-creation, are becoming widely appreciated. Additionally other Iraqi units attempted to retreat to the north along the wadi and that led them directly into G Troop’s position. of Special Collections, Stanford University Libraries, Stanford, Calif. It had the ability to raise 2 million troops if reserve units were called to arms. Still, the Iraqi troops had been surprised because of the inclement weather and were quickly destroyed by the better trained and better equipped American troops. There was some ground contact, but most of the destruction was visited upon the Adnan ID by artillery and Apaches. All three squadrons were in contact with security forces by 9 a.m. but a violent sandstorm blew into the area and movement to the Regiment’s limit of advance, the 60 Easting, took until 11 a.m. The Battle of 73 Easting was fought on 26 February 1991, during the Persian Gulf War, between United States armored forces of the VII Corps and those of the Iraqi Republican Guard and its Tawakalna Division. The 2nd ACR, which advanced between the Iraqi 12th Armored Division and the Tawakalna Division, was the only American ground unit to find itself significantly outnumbered and out-gunned. Initial Iraqi resistance was light and scattered and the 2nd ACR fought only minor engagements until 25 February. The mission of 2nd ACR was to motor eastward. In between pounding his fingers on a keyboard, he is constantly glugging away on seltzer water and sipping on dark roast… pinky out. The Iraqi force greatly outnumbered the American units. The Battle of 73 Easting did not last long. Eagle Troop and Ghost Troop of the US Army's 2nd Armored Cavalry Regiment square-off against the Republican Guard during OPERATION DESERT STORM The 12 M1A1 tanks of Eagle Troop destroyed 28 Iraqi tanks, 16 personnel carriers and 30 trucks in 23 minutes with no American losses.[12]. American media was able to shed a patriotic spotlight on what was known as the American military’s “. The Battle of 73 Easting refers narrowly to the violent armored combat action that took place in the final hours of 2nd ACR’s covering force operation in the zone of Second Squadron and in the northern third of the Third Squadron zone. Neil Fotre is a contributing writer for Coffee or Die, and former U.S. Army Armor Officer. Each of those battles was different. Estimates vary on the exact number of casualties due to certain incidents of friendly fire, but the Iraqi damage is estimated at almost 1,000 soldiers killed in action and more than 1,000 taken prisoner. Fourth Squadron’s air scouts rejoined the operation as the weather cleared around 3 p.m. Air scouts identified enemy defenses to the front of Second and Third Squadrons and attack helicopters struck several of the security outposts. This was the start of nearly two days of continuous combat for the British, some of the toughest fighting of the war. The Iraqi units were also set in a defensive posture, which offers a significant advantage during battle. Their aim was to get behind Iraqi forces, prevent a retreat from Kuwait and destroy five divisions of the elite Iraqi Republican Guard. They covered the advance of the 3rd Armored Division until late on February 25 and then covered the movement of 1st Infantry Division as it moved north from its initial objectives. The war began when Iraqi President Saddam Hussain invaded the small neighboring country of Kuwait on August 2, 1990. Lute, The Regiment's Perspective, IDA Conference papers, p. I-115. Estimates vary on the exact number of casualties due to certain incidents of friendly fire, but the Iraqi damage is estimated at almost 1,000 soldiers killed in action and more than 1,000 taken prisoner. His two tank platoons finished the rest. Publication Rights While Special Collections is the owner of the physical and digital items, permission to examine collection materials is not an authorization to publish. Second ACR began the 26th of February on the VII Corps Objective SMASH still oriented to the northeast. Iraqi Losses. These staggering figures came at a cost of a mere 12 Americans killed in action. The 2nd ACR was to advance east, locate and engage the enemy and determine his dispositions and then allow the mechanized brigades of the 1st ID to pass through to finish destroying the Iraqis. The Regiment had its three armored cavalry squadrons operating on line with Second Squadron in the north, Third Squadron in the center and First Squadron in the south. The Battle of 73 Easting did not last long. At one point a Military Intelligence (MI) Platoon from the 2nd ACR's 502nd MI Company had to suspend its signal intelligence operation and return the fire of Iraqi soldiers who exited a burning BMP-1 and continued to attack. Davis, 1LT Daniel L., "A Swift Kick, 2nd ACR's Taming of the Guard.". The Battle was part of the larger operation and, as it went on, the Third and First Squadron troops in the southern part of the zone continued to fight through the security area of the Republican Guard and fix enemy units of the 12th Armored Division. [14] Before returning to positions along the 70 Easting, I Troop located the defending battalion’s command post and destroyed its command bunker and security forces.[15]. Heavy combat then spread to the south as I Troop of the Third Squadron closed the gap between the two squadrons and joined the fight. The main battle troop carrier was the BMP-1. M1A1 Abrams Tanks from the 3rd Armored Division Brigade along the Line of Departure. More enemy fire came in and was immediately returned. The 1st Infantry Division passed through the 2nd Armored Cavalry Regiment's line in total darkness and continued to advance on Objective Norfolk, an area encompassing the intersection of the IPSA Pipeline Road, several desert trails, and a large Iraqi supply depot. The Battle of Medina Ridge, Battle of Norfolk and the Battle of 73 Easting were tank battles of historical significance. Estimates vary on the exact number of casualties due to certain incidents of friendly fire, but the Iraqi damage is estimated at almost 1,000 soldiers killed in action and more than 1,000 taken prisoner. Based on the intelligence gained during the battle, Colonel Holder advised the Corps Commander that the 1st Infantry Division should pass through the southern units of the Regiment. Immortalized in Mike Guardia’s book “The Fires of Babylon: Eagle Troop and the Battle of 73 Easting” and the documentary “The Last Great Tank Battle of the 20th Century,” the Battle of 73 Easting was fought on Feb. 26, 1991, during the Persian Gulf War, also known as Operation Desert Storm. Each ground squadron was made up of three cavalry troops, a tank company, a self-propelled howitzer battery, and a headquarters troop. The Battle of 73 Easting was a decisive tank battle fought on 26 February 1991, during the Gulf War, between United States armored forces of the VII Corps and those of the Iraqi Republican Guard and its Tawakalna Division. The Iraqis suffered nearly 1,000 casualties, 85 tanks destroyed, 40 armored vehicles destroyed, 30 wheeled-vehicles lost, and two artillery batteries annihilated. Armored Vehicle Losses. At 4:10 p.m. Eagle Troop received fire from an Iraqi infantry position in a cluster of buildings at UTM PU 6801. At about 4:20 Eagle crested a low rise and surprised an Iraqi tank company set up in a reverse slope defense on the 70 Easting. The Battle of 73 Easting was a decisive tank battle fought on 26 February 1991, during the Gulf War, between United States armored forces of the 7th Corps and those of the Iraqi Republican Guard and its Tawakalna Division. By then, G Troop had destroyed “at least two companies of Iraqi armor. In the battle, four of the 2nd ACR’s armored cavalry troops, Troops E, G, and I with Troop K contributing to I Troop’s fight (totaling about 36 M1A1 tanks), defeated two enemy brigades, the Tawakalna Division’s 18th Brigade and, later in the day, the 9th Armored Brigade. Dept. Each of those battles was different. The major U.S. unit that was involved in the battle was the 2nd Armored Cavalry Regiment (2nd ACR). In moving to and through the Battle of 73 Easting, 2nd ACR and the 1st Infantry division's lead brigades destroyed 160 tanks, 180 personnel carriers, 12 artillery pieces and more than 80 wheeled vehicles, along with several anti-aircraft artillery systems during the battle. Objective Norfolk was located west of Phase Line Kiwi, east of Phase Line Smash, and north of Phase Line Grape. There, the Regimental executive officer, Lt Colonel Roger Jones and the S2, Major Steve Campbell, briefed him on the situation and informed him that sensors were reporting movement of tracked vehicles to the north out of the Regiment’s zone. The Battle of 73 Easting did not last long. The Battle of 73 Easting was one of many fights in Desert Storm. Only one Coalition soldier was killed, and American and British troops suffered more casualties from friendly fire than from enemy fire. President George H.W. The U.S. suffered 12 men killed, 57 men wounded, and 32 vehicles destroyed or damaged. Bush was banking on the six-week offensive of Operation Desert Storm to solidify his re-election. American media was able to shed a patriotic spotlight on what was known as the American military’s “shock and awe” tactic to defeat Saddam Hussein’s army. Iron Troop of Third Squadron had halted around the 67 Easting to control the limit of advance with its tank cannon. There he encountered and destroyed another enemy tank unit of eighteen T-72s. The 3rd Brigade, 1st Armored Division engaged the Tawakalna Division, while the rest of 1st Armored Division continued after the Adnan Infantry Division in conjunction with continuous artillery and helicopter attacks. But that would soon change. This area was referred to by a grid coordinate line because the desert was completely void of any geographic landmarks or population center. ", The main U.S. unit in the battle was the 2nd Armored Cavalry Regiment (2nd ACR), a 4,500 man reconnaissance and security element assigned to VII Corps. The Bradley's TOW launcher was inoperative, and the 25mm Bushmaster Cannon had jammed. The aviation squadron led by Lt Colonel Don Olson established a screen along the 50 Easting by 7 a.m. and by 8 a.m. the armored cavalry squadrons had moved into their new zones. In direct support of 2nd ACR, Colonel Garrett Bourne’s 210th FA Brigade launched missions out to the 78 Easting. “Second Armored Cavalry Regiment: Operation Desert Storm”, Major Steve Gravlin, Troop Information Paper, Headquarters 2d ACR, April 1991, “Summary of Fire Missions, 25 and 26 February 1991”, Major John Klemencic, Second Armored Cavalry Regiment, February 1991, Memorandum for Record, Operation DESERT STORM, Lt Colonel Scott Marcy, Headquarters 3d Squadron, 2d ACR, 8 March 1991, Conference Papers from “73 Easting: “Lessons Learned from Desert Storm via Advanced Distributed Simulation Technology, 27–29 August 1991”,J. 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