It is increasingly clear that the command in Baghdad is seeking to manage perception of the Mahmoudiyah attack by describing it as; "a patrol," a "convoy," "A stationary convoy," an "ambush," a "kidnapping," etc.
Any fool can see that this was a well planned complex attack on an outpost. The two vehicles had been in position for five hours, they were to be "relieved" by another "crew" on the outpost in an hour, the enemy attacked at 0400 (the very best hour for such things) from several directions simultaneously, over ran the outpost and withdrew before any help showed up. It could not be more clear that this was an ATTACK not an AMBUSH. You have to be moving to be ambushed.
If you read the news carefully today, you saw, buried away somewhere a minimal mention of an attack by a 50 man force against an American outpost in the middle of Baqouba in Diyala Province. Was this also an "ambush?" This was a significant action because it presages similar action on the main front in Baghdad.
Why is the military command describing things so incorrectly? Clearly, they believe that to say that the enemy is systematically (and with skill) attacking US outposts is to undermine the rational of the Keane/Kagan (oops, the Petraeus) Plan.
The media has been "going along" with this. Are they just ignorant or are they complicit? I vote for ignorant. pl