More Marines Are Heading To Iraq

Matt Vespa
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Posted: Mar 21, 2016 2:30 PM
More Marines Are Heading To Iraq

Following a rocket attack that killed a U.S. Marine over the weekend, the U.S. is sending more reinforcements to help “augment” the existing force of 4,000 who are fighting the Islamic State. The Military Times reported on the latest influx of troops entering the region, though they could not give a solid figure on how many are being deployed:

The U.S. is sending a detachment of Marines to Iraq following a deadly attack on a coalition base in northern Iraq that left one Marine dead and eight more injured.

The Marines and sailors headed to Iraq are with the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit, according to the U.S. task force running the war against the Islamic State group. The detachment will augment Marines and sailors already fighting ISIS, officials said Sunday.

It is not immediately clear how many Marines and sailors from the 26th MEU are deploying to Iraq or whether they are replacing any of the Marines injured in Saturday’s rocket attack.

The 26th MEU is currently deployed to the 5th Fleet area of operations with the Kearsarge Amphibious Ready Group. The more than 4,000 Marines and sailors with the blue-green team have been deployed since October.

The Marine killed over the weekend has been identified as Staff Sgt. Louis F. Cardin; he was "providing force protection fire support" near a base in Northern Iraq (via CNN):

A U.S. Marine was killed in a rocket attack by ISIS on a base at Makhmur in northern Iraq, the Pentagon said Saturday.

Pentagon Press Secretary Peter Cook confirmed the death in a statement. He said the Marine was "providing force protection fire support at a recently established coalition fire base near Makhmur in northern Iraq."

Cook added that several other Marines were wounded, though he did not provide details on their conditions.

On Sunday, the Pentagon identified the slain Marine as Staff Sgt. Louis F. Cardin, of Temecula, California. Cardin was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment, 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit, Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, the Pentagon said.