AH-64 Apache Units of Operations Enduring Freedom & Iraqi Freedom Osprey Books

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Great Book by Osprey Publishing. 96 pages
After the attacks on 11 September 2001, Apache units made significant contributions to the Coalition campaign against Taliban and Al Qaeda forces in Afghanistan. Functioning as the killer part of US Army Hunter-killer teams, Apaches sought out and brought overwhelming firepower to bear on Taliban and al Qaeda forces, along with providing direct support to Coalition troops on the ground. The Afghan campaign is just one phase in a much larger war. On 17 March 2003, the next phase of the War on Terror began as the deadline for Saddam Hussein to end his defiance of the UN came and went. Apaches spearheaded the advance of both the 3rd Infantry division and the 101st airborne division, engaging in some of the heaviest fighting along the western axis of advance. Weather and enemy fire took a heavy toll on Apaches operating in Western Iraq. These helicopters were often operating low over enemy-controlled territory in bad weather and at night, and were constantly exposed to large calibre Iraqi AAA. Many were damaged and a few were forced down. Chief Warrant Officer David S Williams and Chief Warrant Officer Ronald D Young Jr were both captured during the fighting around Karbala when their Apache took several hits and could not remain aloft. The gunship pilots fought a difficult and dirty war, as both an anti-tank platform and as a quick reaction force for units engaged on the ground. The performance of the Apache helicopters and their crews in both Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom proved the flexibility of the Apache, and its ability to absorb a great deal of punishment and complete its mission.