View Full Version : Combat Barbie KO's rebel

12-12-05, 12:18 PM
Combat Barbie KO's rebel
and Tony BONNICI

A GIRL soldier dubbed “Combat Barbie” has been honoured for disarming an Iraqi rebel.

Private Katrina Hodge, 18, wrestled TWO rifles from a prisoner and then floored him with her bare hands.

The amazing act of bravery came after the vehicle they were both travelling in went out of control and crashed.

Clerk Katrina — given her nickname because of her love of “pink girlie stuff” — used her Army training to subdue the insurgent as he tried to flee.

She was rewarded with a commendation from the CO of her unit, the 1st Battalion, Royal Anglian Regiment.

And last night she said modestly: “I was surprised when I was given the commendation but also very proud of myself — I don’t think I’ve ever held my head so high.”

The drama happened after Katrina’s unit had searched a house and were taking a suspected rebel fighter back to Shaibah Logistics Base, near Basra, for questioning.

Their vehicle flipped over three times and as the other soldiers lay stunned the suspect grabbed the rifles and ran for it.

Katrina responded instantly — grappling with him in hand-to-hand combat, restraining him and checking the loaded weapons were safe.

She said: “After the crash everyone was in a state of shock, then I saw the prisoner had the guns.

“I only had a split second but with the adrenalin pumping it was like slow motion.

“For a moment I thought I was going to die, so I screamed at him to give me the rifles.

“As we are allowed to use reasonable force if we are in danger I gave him a whack and grabbed the weapons from him.”

Top brass were so impressed they awarded her the citation to go with the Iraq Medal she received for her tour of duty.

Single Katrina — one of only ten girls in the Royal Anglians — has become a heroine back home in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, especially to parents Ann and Jim and brother Bryan.

Explaining how she got her nickname within minutes of joining basic training, she said: “I love girlie stuff and all my suitcases were bright pink.

“No sooner had I walked into the barracks than the corporal turned round said, ‘Bloody hell, it’s Combat Barbie!’

“The name stuck after that. Everybody calls me Combat Barbie but I really don’t mind.”

An Army spokesman said last night: “Private Hodge has clearly done a tremendous job which is evidence of the quality of people we have.”


Ready for action ... Katrina on patrol in Iraq


12-12-05, 02:25 PM
Go to go Katrina!