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Wounded U.S. Marine Recounts Enemy's Surprise Attack

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LANDSTUHL, GERMANY — Heroic stories are being told by U.S. troops wounded in the ambush at Nasiriya.

Thursday morning, a Marine and two soldiers offered their firsthand accounts of the fighting.

Twenty-four U.S. troops wounded during the first week of Operation Iraqi Freedom have been transferred to the Landstuhl Medical Center.

During a hospital news conference, Lance Cpl. Josh Menard, stationed at Camp Lejeune, said the resistance his unit encountered came as a surprise.

"We were very surprised," Menard said. "We were told that when we were going through Nasiriya that we should see a little or no resistance, and when we got in, it was a whole different ball game."

Menard said the Iraqis did not roll over in surrender the way his unit thought they would.

"I was up on the bridge with six other Marines, putting security, letting our troops over, when what appeared to be civilians came up with AK 47's from the city side, " Menard said. "They started shooting at us on the bridge. We returned fire for about a minute before I took a bullet in the hand."

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