US Lawmakers’ Plane Face Rocket Attack in Iraq

Congressmen visiting Iraq dodge attack – Los Angeles Times

“It was a scary moment,” said Sen. Mel Martinez (R-Fla.), who reported seeing a bright flash outside the window just after he took off his body armor. “Our pilots were terrific. . . . They banked in one direction and then banked the other direction, and they set off the flares.”

The other congressmen on the plane were Sens. Richard C. Shelby (R-Ala.) and James M. Inhofe (R-Okla.) and Rep. Robert E. “Bud” Cramer (D-Ala.). …

Despite the scare, Shelby, Martinez and Cramer said they believed the recent troop buildup had helped stabilize parts of the country.