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2/24 kicks off Operation Spider Web

6 Mar 2008 | Pfc. Jerry Murphy

Spiders weave their webs in detailed fashion, creating a complex design with its sole purpose to trap their prey. Marines of 2nd Battalion, 24th Marine Regiment, Regimental Combat Team 1, plan on doing the same through Operation Spider Web.

 Operation Spider Web is a partnered insurgent clearing operation where Marines will team up with the Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) and sweep the area for suspected insurgents.

 “With the help of intelligence gathered from past operations, we will detain any suspected insurgents for questioning,” said Maj. Gary A. Bourland, the assistant operations officer for 2nd Bn., 24th Regiment. “We’ll be working together with the ISF in one spot. This is a big accomplishment for 2/24, not only because we’ll bring everyone together, but to reverse planning and execute the operation.”

 In addition to sweeping the area, the Marines will conduct security patrols and provide the Iraqis with food, water and needed utilities.

 “It’s a joint operation with the Iraqi army and ISF. We’ll conduct security patrols and assist the Iraqi army and ISF in securing the AO,” said 1st Sgt. Dan S. Miller, company first sergeant for Company G. “We’ll also be conducting combined medical engagements and will conduct census patrols to better help the Iraqi government figure out and overcome their concerns.”

 In Miller’s first two deployments, there was not a whole lot of help from the ISF, with the Marines having to do most of the work. Now, on his third deployment, Miller mentioned with a bit of enthusiasm, that the ISF is much more capable of doing their job well and are furthering their ability to handle their own problems, with little or no help from the Marines.

 During the beginning stages of the operation, Marines of Co. G, with intelligence gathered, went to the home of two Iraqis, and brought them to their command outpost to be questioned.

 “We’re just going out to pick up a couple of suspected bad guys,” said Cpl. Rob A. Jasper, a 27-year-old rifleman from Polo, Ill. “We found (improvised explosive devices) (IEDs) and a weapons cache on his property, so we’re going to pick them up and search a couple of areas around his house for another possible cache.”

 Jasper also commented on working with the ISF, saying: “They’re really catching on to what they need to get done. They’re doing a lot of the work and are doing a lot of the missions. This is definitely going to help the process of getting Iraq back on its feet.”

 Much like the intricate network of interconnecting spider web strands, the Marines, Iraqi Army, Iraqi Police and the Sons of Iraq will continue to interlink with each other through a web of intelligence and operations across the land, ensnaring any insurgent prey who spring up, keeping the cities in the area safe and giving the community a sense of security.