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Three U.S. Soldiers Killed in Baghdad Rocket Attack

Three U.S. soldiers were killed in a Baghdad rocket attack Monday, following a weekend in which U.S. forces killed 45 Shiite militia fighters during fierce battles in the Iraqi capital. New York Times reporter Michael Gordon updates the story from Baghdad.

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    Michael Gordon, thank you for joining us. It's been about a month since U.S. and Iraqi forces began this push into Sadr City. And in the last 24 hours, more rocket attacks and mortar rained down on the Green Zone.

    Why is it proving so difficult to get a handle on this situation for the U.S. and Iraqi forces?

  • MICHAEL GORDON, New York Times:

    Well, first of all, Sadr City is a very large sector of Baghdad.

    You're talking about a region that has more than two million people who are packed together in some rather dense neighborhoods of alley ways and side streets. So it's a large area, maybe comparable to like a borough in New York City.

    And American and Iraqi forces have moved into the southern part of Sadr City, the southern districts of that area, but they haven't really advanced north of that. And they've had some success in suppressing the rocket fire in the areas they're in.

    But in terms of the rest of the city, that really depends on helicopters and reconnaissance and Predator drones. And they don't function very well during a sandstorm.