New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - February 13, 1991, New Braunfels, Texas
Herald Zeltung, New Braunfels, Texas Wednesday, February 13, 1991 Page 5AHundreds reported killed in hit on bomb shelter
DHAHRAN, Saudi Arabia (AP) — Missiles slammed into a Baghdad bomb shelter today. Iraq said, claiming SOO civilians died. The United States said the site was a military ' command center.
The U.S. military command said the site was a military command and control bunker that was "an active target" for some time.
"We have no explanation at this time, really, why there were civilians in this bunker," Marine Brig. Gen. Richard I. Neal told reporters in Riyadh today.
"We don’t feel we attacked the wrong bunker or made a mistake."
The deaths occurred during a 12-hour bombardment of Baghdad. One of the buildings hit — the Palace of Conferences — is across the street from the al-Rashid Hotel, where a . Soviet envoy on a peace mission is staying. The diplomat met Tuesday with Iraqi President Saddam Hussein.
As the Persian Gulf War turned 4 weeks old, the Soviet diplomatic efforts to end it picked up with the announcement today of plans for Iraqi Foreign Minister Tariq Aziz to meet in Moscow with President Mikhail S. Gorbachev. Sunday’s trip would be a followup to envoy Yevgeny Primakov’s trip, the Kremlin said.
After meeting with Primakov, Saddam announced Iraq might be willing to talk. However, the White House noted he said nothing about the central issue in the conflict — ending the occupation of Kuwait.
U.S. military officials, meanwhile, said Iraq has managed to rig .makeshift military communications and supply links despite allied bombing aimed at smashing them. They said Iraqi was drawing on battlefield experience in its 1980-88 war with Iran.
The bomb shelter hit today also was a legacy of the Iran-Iraq war: It was one of five big shelters built in the capital during that conflict .
Witnesses said the shelter in the middle-class residential al-Amerieh district took direct hits from at least two missiles fired by allied warplanes. The missiles pierced 9 feet of concrete.
Rescuers clawing through the debris found eight survivors immediately after the bombing, AP correspondent Salah Nasrawi reported from the scene. The rescuers later said they retrieved more than 200 bodies, most of them charred and mutilated beyond recognition, Nasrawi report cd.
Iraqi civil defense officials said lists compiled from residents indicated there were more than SOO people inside the shelter when the warplanes struck before dawn. A senior civil defense official said scores of people remained buried in the rubble but there was no hope of finding anyone alive.
Funerals held for one of 2 Texas soldiers killed in war
FORT WORTH (AP) — Mourners at the funeral of U.S. Marine Corps Capt. David R. Hen- Jr. were told that his death was "a loss but definitely nota waste."
' “No life is ever a waste when it is given doing what a person wants to do," the Rev. Robert W. Bohl of Fort Worth’s First Presbyterian Church said. "He died doing exactly what he wanted to do, thank God.
Herr, 28, died earlier this month in a helicopter crash in Saudi Arabia.
A helicopter pilot, Herr was killed along with three other Marines when their Huey-1 helicopter apparently malfunctioned and crashed Feb. 2 in eastern Saudi Arabia.
Herr’s "sacrifice for us will never, ever be forgotten," said Bohl. The Marine’s "courage and love of country and freedom will always be a beacon of light to us," the minister added.
Herr graduated from Fort Worth Country Day School in 1980 and attended Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Va.
He is survived by his parents, Connie and David Herr of Fort Worth.
! In an earlier interview, Mrs. Herr said her son was lucky enough to do ' what he wanted most in the world, to ! serve his country.
! The funeral of another victim in the ;Feb. 2 crash, Marine Cpl. Albert G. ■ Haddad Jr., 22, of Lewisville, is scheduled today.
• The door gunner will be buried at ; Flower Mound Cemetery in Lewisville following services at Lakeland I Baptist Church.
; Herr and Haddad and the other two
• Marines killed were members of the ! Light Helicopter Attack Squadron ;369, based at Camp Pendleton near ; San Diego.
• Haddad was bom in Delaware and [graduated from Lewisville High ' School, where he was a football player. He was married less than a year ago.onFteb. 17.
Residents crowded around the wrecked shelter, looking for relatives and friends. Men beat on their chests and yelled "Allahu Akbar,” Arabic for "God is Great," and women cried hysterically, Nasrawi said.
At a Baghdad hospital where the injured were taken, 17-year-old Omar Adrian, badly burned, said he was the only survivor of his family of six.
"I was sleeping and suddenly I felt heat and the blanket was burning," Adnan said. "I turned to try and touch my mother who was next to me but grabbed nothing but a piece of flesh."
Also hit in the raids were telecommunications centers in the al-Jadrieh and al-Jamila districts, and the government’s Palace of Conferences.
Iraq previously had claimed thousands of civilian casualties in the allied air raids. U.S. officials have said the Iraqi figures were probably inflated.
President Bush, speaking with reporters in Washington on Tuesday, described Iraqi statements on civilian casualties as a "one-sided propaganda mission cranking out myths and falsehoods.’’
However, the U.S. command has said civilian casualties are an inevitable byproduct of the strikes aimed at military and strategic targets.
Also today, Jordanian refugees said 30 people were killed and about two dozen hurt when allied planes attacked the bus they were riding in near the Iraq-Kuwait border on Saturday.
"We heard the planes come and they dropped bombs. One fell in front.
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(me hit the bus and one fell behind, said Shehadeh Ibrahim Shehadeh, who arrived at the Jordanian border post of Ruweishid today. "The bus caught fire and some were trapped."
With the war thundering ahead.
Baghdad radio reported early today that Saddam told Primakov he is prepared to cooperate with the Soviet Union and other nations in a peace effort.
But there was no sign Saddam is
willing to relinquish Kuwait as the United States has demanded.
"The deciding factor for us is: What does he say about getting out of Kuwait?" White House spokesman Marlin Fitzwater asked in
At the United Nations, Cuba and Yemen were leading a push to keep the first U.N. Security Council debate on the war from being held in closed session. Both sides said today’s vote could be close.
The closed session was sought by U.S. and British diplomats who maintain an open meeting with angry comments about the war would suggest the council did not stand by its resolutions to force Iraq to withdraw from Kuwait.
On Tuesday, Iraq said any ground war would be costly and bloody for the United States and its partners.
"If the Americans want to spare their sons from certain death, all they have to do is pull their losing forces out of the holy land of the Arabs and leave the Arabs to iron out their differences by themselves,’’ Iraq’s news agency quoted its parliament speaker, Saadi Mehdi Saleh, as saying.
But the allies signaled that it would be some time before they choose to wage an all-out ground war.
British Defense Secretary Tom King, who met with Bush in Washington on Tuesday, said there was "a need to see some significant reduction in Iraq’s military capability" before any land assault.
"I think there’s some work to be done," he said.
In large measure, that work is the! air war. In eastern Saudi Arabia, skies were clear today as waves of warplanes roared off (Mi bombing runs.
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