Democrats under fire again!


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mjydrafter
July 15, 2003, 09:52 AM
Democrats take fire this weekend in Des Moines. (http://desmoinesregister.com/news/stories/c4788998/21746229.html)

By WILLIAM PETROSKI
Register Staff Writer
07/15/2003


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What began as a leisurely canoe ride for Ed Fallon and Leonard Tinker on Sunday was interrupted when machine gun bullets suddenly began whizzing over their heads.

The two men from Des Moines were paddling on Beaver Creek in the Johnston area when they entered the 4,400-acre Iowa National Guard base at Camp Dodge. Neither said they saw any signs warning them to stay out, so they kept on heading downstream.

"I would guess maybe a half-dozen rounds went over us. I could hear them whine. That is when I realized, 'Hey, baby. This is for real,' " said Tinker, 57, a civilian employee in Vietnam during the war there.

The two men pulled over to the creek bank where they were protected from weapons fire, and Fallon used a cell phone to call a 911 emergency dispatcher for help. They were put in touch with Camp Dodge security officers, who told them the firing would stop and they should proceed to meet them at a nearby bridge.

What the two men subsequently learned was that they had entered the impact area of the firing range at Camp Dodge. National Guard troops there had been undergoing marksmanship training on Sunday, using M-16 rifles and M-60 machine guns, said Col. Robert King, the National Guard's public affairs officer. The bullets were real, he said.

Fallon, a state legislator who is a Democrat, said he wants to make sure a similar incident doesn't happen to anybody else.

"We were lucky to get through it. Somebody in an inner tube or not equipped with a cell phone could find themselves dead," he said.

Fallon and Tinker said they had heard gunfire in the distance earlier and figured it was probably coming from Camp Dodge, but didn't realize they heading towards a dangerous area. They said they had encountered a squad of National Guard troops when they took a break and the troops didn't give them any indication that they were could be paddling toward trouble.

The boundary of Camp Dodge had previously been marked with a sign on Beaver Creek indicating that the property is off-limits to the public, King said. But the sign apparently was either washed out by high waters or vandalized.

"Corrective action has already begun," King said Monday.

Two signs have been installed to warn the public that the the property is a military base and to keep out, King said. A third sign - farther downstream - announces that people are nearing a weapons-impact area. The sign warns: "Do not enter."

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4v50 Gary
July 15, 2003, 11:57 PM
The soldiers missed? Put them on report and send them back to the range. ;)

LoneStranger
July 16, 2003, 03:49 AM
Do you count it as a genuine miss if you are not aware that the target is there?:rolleyes:

bountyhunter
July 16, 2003, 02:36 PM
That's how the movie "Southern Comfort" started out. Didn't end well for the soldiers.

vmi93
July 16, 2003, 08:00 PM
This thread contained exactly the news I hoped it would when I opened it. I was worried that "under fire" was meant figuratively. :evil:

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