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Link: US Attacked Convoy In Syria – USA Today

U.S. forces battled Syrians after attacking convoy

By Dave Moniz, USA TODAY
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WASHINGTON — U.S. military forces crossed into Syria and engaged in a shooting match with border guards last Wednesday after destroying a caravan that was suspected of carrying Saddam Hussein or members of his family, Defense officials said Monday.

The incident occurred near Qaim, a town close to the Iraqi-Syrian border, when U.S. ground troops sought to examine a string of vehicles that had been attacked by an AC-130 gunship and Army helicopters. Five Syrian soldiers were injured in the confrontation after the air attack, the officials said. It was unclear who fired first or how the confrontation developed.

About 20 more Syrian soldiers were detained briefly, then released. Syria had no comment on the incident. Syrian-U.S. ties have been strained over Syria's past support for Saddam's regime and continued backing for anti-Israeli Palestinian militants.


The mission was approved by Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, according to a senior military official. President Bush was made aware of the strike, but it did not require his approval, a senior administration official said.

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