Last week, U.S. Forces teamed up with Kurdish Peshmergas to rescue captives held at an Islamic State compound in northern Iraq. The mission freed around 70 hostages, but led to the death of Master Sgt. Joshua L. Wheeler—the first U.S. service member to die in combat in Iraq since 2011.
After the mission was complete, the Kurdistan Regional Government—the same body who requested the raid and the help of U.S. forces—released footage from a helmet cam worn by one of the Kurdish soldiers.
Watch (the footage is intense, but not NSFW):
According to CNN, a U.S. military official has confirmed the authenticity of the video.
More from Newsweek:
The two-minute-long video, released by the Kurdistan Region Security Council, shows groups of men running and being led out of a room amid gunfire as soldiers pat them down. Some emerge with their hands up, while others cover their ears from the crackle of weapons. The camera, which was reportedly mounted on a helmet of a Kurdish soldier, clearly shows the black-and-white flag associated with ISIS on the striped walls of a room.
Most of the hostages in the video are barefoot and wearing long robes. During the clip, the camera also pans down a long corridor, where a number of padlocked rooms can clearly be seen. A fire appears to be burning outside one of the windows.
According to multiple reports, U.S. Special Forces were not originally slated to actively participate in the raid on the compound; however, when Kurdish commandos were overwhelmed by ISIS fighters, the 30 members of Delta Force who were brought in to “advise and assist” were forced to enter the fray.
Wheeler, a member of Delta Force, was shot inside the compound and transferred to Irbil, where he later died.
Defense Secretary Ash Carter honored Wheeler in a statement last week, saying, “[the sacrifice and decisive action of this courageous American in support of his comrades reminds us of the dangers that the coalition forces confront in Iraq, but also of the important assistance they provide local forces as they lead the fight against a barbaric enemy.”
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