Several India Company Marines helped me gain clarity on what exactly happened during the 11 April 05 complex attack on Camp Gannon. You can see the details they provided in the draft chapter, Attack on Gannon
For example, Dali Markovic of 2nd Platoon provided me the probable location of the enemy cameraman, and a pretty cool story about how India came close to taking him out.
Like most of AQI’s ‘martyrdom operations’, the April 11th attack was planned to maximize the propaganda value. At least one camera crew was in place to capture the explosions.
The result was a dramatic video that was distributed to jihadist websites. Subsequently, it was featured on the now-inactive terrorism tracking website, globalterroralert.com, and later migrated to YouTube where it has been viewed thousands of times.
A little-known aspect of the attack is that India Co. came close to killing the cameraman. Marines manning the ‘P1’ tower spotted the insurgent media team through binoculars.
They were on a rooftop some 800 meters to the southeast of Gannon. “We called for fire on his location, but it was declined due to the helicopter being too close”, says Dali Markovic, a Team Leader in 2nd Platoon. “We couldn’t tell they were filming, [but] we considered them hostile due to their activity on the roof at the time of the attack and the fact that we were receiving fire from that approximate direction.”
So, while the bad guys were shooting the video, Markovic and other Marines weren’t just watching them, they had their position dialed in and were trying to kill them.