By Spc. Dustin Gautney, 2nd HBCT, 3rd ID Public AffairsDecember 17, 2009
FORWARD OPERATING BASE MAREZ, Iraq - Soldiers from 1st Battalion, 64th Armor, 2nd Heavy Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division and members from 2/52 Iraqi Army Brigade discovered a large weapons cache in Ninewa province, in northern Iraq, Dec. 6.
The weapons cache of 481 projectile explosives and 211 fuses was the largest found in Ninewa province since 2003.
Information of a possible weapons cache was given to 2/52 IA by a local informant that the weapons cache site was still active and has been in use for the past five years.
Major Gen. Nassir, commander of 2nd IA Division, stated that the munitions that were found were destined to kill Iraqi and American Soldiers. Based on the size of the cache, it was most likely to be used to disrupt the upcoming national elections.
"Our Soldiers finding this cache, in cooperation with the Iraqi Army, undoubtedly saved lives and made Iraq safer to live" said Lt. Col. Ross Coffman, commander, 1/64th Armor, 2nd HBCT. "That is what we're here for."
Upon arrival at the possible cache site, engineers from 1/64th Armor discovered the suspected site and later found a second weapons cache that was originally thought to be a water pipe.
Later it was discovered that there was a series of smaller caches located in a close area. The ordnance ranged from relatively new and recently hidden rounds to rounds that had been in the ground for an undetermined length of time.