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Archive for the ‘USMC’ Category

Osprey V-22: No mishaps yet, in Iraq

Posted by thebosun on February 14, 2008

Courtesy of Multi-National Force Iraq 

 The Pentagon hasn’t been saying much about what’s up with the Osprey in Iraq. That could be because it doesn’t want to jinx what seems to be, after the first three months of deployment, a success story for the long-controversial tilt-rotor aircraft. (By contrast, try getting it to stop crowing about the performance of a different breed of new aerial technology, unmanned aerial vehicles such as the Reaper.) Since arriving at Al Asad Airbase last fall, the 10 MV-22 Ospreys of Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 263 have accumulated more than 1,600 hours of flight time, carrying hundreds of passengers–from ground troops to VIPs–and thousands of pounds of cargo “without a mishap or even a close call,” according to a story last week in The Dallas Morning News.

That’s no small feat for an aircraft that critics cited time and time again for its checkered history of fatal crashes; among other things, they said, the aircraft could well fall prey to the dust it would stir up in the desert environment. Time magazine in October tarred the Osprey–which flies like both a helicopter and a fixed-wing airplane–in a cover story titled “A Flying Shame.” The Marines Corps did seem to be handling the 16-ton Osprey gingerly at first in Iraq, using it in less risky support missions, according to the Morning News story. (For the Dallas paper, this is something of a local story: Bell Helicopter Textron assembles the aircraft in Forth Worth and Amarillo.) But in December, the aircraft began to take part in combat missions. From day to day, anywhere from 50 percent to 100 percent of the Ospreys are ready to fly, the paper reported.

That could be a sign of genuine and worrisome mechanical problems, or maybe just overly protective policies that keep airworthy Ospreys grounded. If all continues to go well, scores more Ospreys will be hitting the production line for eventual use by the Marines, the Navy, and the Air Force.

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Posted in 'War on Terror', CENTCOM, DoD, Marines, Military, U.S. Military, US Armed Forces, USMC, War, War and Peace, War BLOGGING | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Is Another Congressman Guilty of TREASON???

Posted by thebosun on October 19, 2007

DISCLAIMER: The different points of views on the Rick Roberts are not supported nor do they reflect the views and beliefs of The Bosun Locker or any entity affiliated with The Bosun.

ANOTHER CONGRESSMAN GUILTY OF TREASON… 
Courtesy of  Rick Roberts, KFMB San Diego
October 19th, 2007

Congressman Pete Stark is a liberal, democrat congressman from the Amsterdam of the United States: San Fran-sicko.

HE NEEDS TO RESIGN. WHY? JUST READ SOME OF WHAT HE SAID IN CONGRESS YESTERDAY:

    “The Republicans are worried that we can’t pay for insuring an additional 10 million children. They sure don’t care about finding 200 billion dollars to fight the illegal war in Iraq. Where are you going to get that money? Are you going to tell us lies like you’re telling us today? Is that how you’re going to fund the war?

    You don’t have money to fund the war or children. But you’re going to spend it to blow up innocent people if we can get enough kids to grow old enough for you to send to Iraq to get their heads blown off for the president’s amusement.

    But the President Bush’s statements about children’s health shouldn’t be taken any more seriously than his lies about the war in Iraq. The truth is that Bush just likes to blow things up in Iraq, in the United States, and in Congress”.

Disgusting, is it not?

I am SICK AND TIRED of these corrupt politicians forgetting the vital, big-as-life fact that our brave military is an all-volunteer army.

Our men in uniform are a throwback to the brave souls that fought for our freedoms during WWII; they are a intelligent, strong, courageous, and selfless force.

A single soldier has more guts in their little finger than Stark, Durbin, Reid (and countless others) COMBINED.

But the democrats don’t see it that way. They see our nation’s military as a bunch of children strong-armed by evil conservatives to fight a nonexistent enemy.

I’M SICK OF IT!! Each and every one of these democrats- like Stark, like Reid, like Turban Durbin- need to STEP DOWN. They’re not worthy of leadership. We’re at war with a VERY REAL enemy. These officials need to be pulled away from their cushy executive chairs and thrown out in the middle of Fallujah without protection so that they can see what’s REALLY going on.

So you don’t believe there’s an enemy, Rep. Stark? You believe that our brave servicemen are having their “heads blown off” by a herd of President Bush clones in bed sheets? Because looking at the context of what you’re currently saying and what you’ve said in the past- that seems to be what you think!

But I digress…

Do you want to vent? Call Rep. Stark’s office. Give them a piece of your mind:

510-494-1388

Or fax:

510-494-5852

Email via web form HERE.

Or call his D.C. office at…

202-225-5065

You can also fax his D.C. office:

202-226-3805

Tell Stark that he does NOT represent the State of California. Tell Stark that he’s a DISGRACE to the United States of America and everything that it was founded on. Individuals like him do not deserve to be in the House. They deserve to be on a stake!!

Comments at Rick Roberts site »

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Posted in anti-US, CENTCOM, Conservative Talk, Democrats and Republicans, Department of Defense, DoD, Domestic Politics, Dublicitous Democrats, duplicitous democrats, Economics and Politics, Freedom, Freedom of Speech/Politics, Heroes, Iraq, Iraq War, Iraqi, Marines, Military, News, News and Information, Political Pundit, Politics, Politics/Debate, real war, Rick Roberts, KFMB San Diego, U.S. Military, US Armed Forces, US News, US of A, USMC, War, War BLOGGING, World at War, World War III | 7 Comments »

Operation Redwing, Asadabad, Afghanistan

Posted by thebosun on October 16, 2007

Courtesy of Department of Defense.

Operation Redwing
June 28, 2005

On June 28, 2005, deep behind enemy lines east of Asadabad in the Hindu Kush of Afghanistan, a very committed four-man Navy SEAL team was conducting a reconnaissance mission at the unforgiving altitude of approximately 10,000 feet. The SEALs, Lt. Michael Murphy, Gunner’s Mate 2nd Class (SEAL) Danny Dietz, Sonar Technician 2nd Class (SEAL) Matthew Axelson and Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class (SEAL) Marcus Luttrell had a vital task.  The four SEALs were scouting Ahmad Shah – a terrorist in his mid-30s who grew up in the adjacent mountains just to the south.
Under the assumed name Muhammad Ismail, Shah led a guerrilla group known to locals as the “Mountain Tigers” that had aligned with the Taliban and other militant groups close to the Pakistani border. The SEAL mission was compromised when t

he team was spotted by local nationals, who presumably reported its presence and location to the Taliban.
A fierce firefight erupted between the four SEALs and a much larger enemy force of more than 50 anti-coalition militia.  The enemy had the SEALs outnumbered.  They also had terrain advantage.  They launched a well-organized, three-sided attack on the SEALs.  The firefight continued relentlessly as the overwhelming militia forced the team deeper into a ravine. 

Trying to reach safety, the four men, now each wounded, began bounding down the mountain’s steep sides, making leaps of 20 to 30 feet. Approximately 45 minutes into the fight, pinned down by overwhelming forces, Dietz, the communications petty officer, sought open air to place a distress call back to the base. But before he could, he was shot in the hand, the blast shattering his thumb.

Despite the intensity of the firefight and suffering grave gunshot wounds himself, Murphy is credited with risking his own life to save the lives of his teammates. Murphy, intent on making contact with headquarters, but realizing this would be impossible in the extreme terrain where they were fighting, unhesitatingly and with complete disregard for his own life moved into the open, where he could gain a better position to transmit a call to get help for his men.
Moving away from the protective mountain rocks, he knowingly exposed himself to increased enemy gunfire.  This deliberate and heroic act deprived him of cover and made him a target for the enemy.  While continuing to be fired upon, Murphy made contact with the SOF Quick Reaction Force at Bagram Air Base and requested assistance. He calmly provided his unit’s location and the size of the enemy force while requesting immediate support for his team. At one point he was shot in the back causing him to drop the transmitter. Murphy picked it back up, completed the call and continued firing at the enemy who was closing in.  Severely wounded, Lt. Murphy returned to his cover position with his men and continued the battle.

An MH-47 Chinook helicopter, with eight additional SEALs and eight Army Night Stalkers aboard, was sent is as part of an extraction mission to pull out the four embattled SEALs.  The MH-47 was escorted by heavily-armored, Army attack helicopters. Entering a hot combat zone, attack helicopters are used initially to neutralize the enemy and make it safer for the lightly-armored, personnel-transport helicopter to insert.

The heavy weight of the attack helicopters slowed the formation’s advance prompting the MH-47 to outrun their armored escort.  They knew the tremendous risk going into an active enemy area in daylight, without their attack support, and without the cover of night.  Risk would, of course, be minimized if they put the helicopter down in a safe zone. But knowing that their warrior brothers were shot, surrounded and severely wounded, the rescue team opted to directly enter the oncoming battle in hopes of landing on brutally hazardous terrain.

As the Chinook raced to the battle, a rocket-propelled grenade struck the helicopter, killing all 16 men aboard. 
On the ground and nearly out of ammunition, the four SEALs, Murphy, Luttrell, Dietz and Axelson, continued the fight.  By the end of the two-hour gunfight that careened through the hills and over cliffs, Murphy, Axelson and Dietz had been killed. An estimated 35 Taliban were also dead.

The fourth SEAL, Luttrell, was blasted over a ridge by a rocket propelled grenade and was knocked unconscious. Regaining consciousness some time later, Luttrell managed to escape – badly injured – and slowly crawl away down the side of a cliff. Dehydrated, with a bullet wound to one leg, shrapnel embedded in both legs, three vertebrae cracked; the situation for Luttrell was grim. Rescue helicopters were sent in, but he was too weak and injured to make contact. Traveling seven miles on foot he evaded the enemy for nearly a day. Gratefully, local nationals came to his aid, carrying him to a nearby village where they kept him for three days. The Taliban came to the village several times demanding that Luttrell be turned over to them. The villagers refused.  One of the villagers made his way to a Marine outpost with a note from Luttrell, and U.S. forces launched a massive operation that rescued him from enemy territory on July 2.

By his undaunted courage, intrepid fighting spirit and inspirational devotion to his men in the face of certain death, Lt. Murphy was able to relay the position of his unit, an act that ultimately led to the rescue of Luttrell and the recovery of the remains of the three who were killed in the battle.

This was the worst single-day U.S. Forces death toll since Operation Enduring Freedom began nearly six years ago.  It was the single largest loss of life for Naval Special Warfare since World War II. 

The Naval Special Warfare (NSW) community will forever remember June 28, 2005 and the heroic efforts and sacrifices of our special operators.  We hold with reverence the ultimate sacrifice that they made while engaged in that fierce fire fight on the front lines of the global war on terrorism (GWOT).

-NSW-

OPERATION REDWING KIAs- On June 28, 2005, three of four SEALS on the ground (Murphy, Dietz, Axelson) were  killed during combat operations in support of Operation Red Wing.  ON the same say, a QRF of eight Navy SEALs and 8 Army Night Stalkers were also killed when the MH-47 helicopter that they were aboard was shot down by enemy fire in the vicinity of Asadabad, Afghanistan in Kumar Province. 

Navy SEALs
SEAL Delivery Vehicle Team 1, Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.

  1. Lt. (SEAL) Michael P. Murphy, 29, of Patchogue, N.Y. 
  2. Sonar Technician (Surface) 2nd Class (SEAL) Matthew G. Axelson, 29, of Cupertino, Calif.
  3. Machinist Mate 2nd Class (SEAL) Eric S. Patton, 22, of Boulder City, Nev.
  4. Senior Chief Information Systems Technician (SEAL) Daniel R. Healy, 36, of Exeter, N.H. 
  5. Quartermaster 2nd Class (SEAL) James Suh, 28, of Deerfield Beach, Fla. 

SEAL Delivery Vehicle Team 2, Virginia Beach, Va.

  1. Gunner’s Mate 2nd Class (SEAL) Danny P. Dietz, 25, of Littleton, Colo. 

SEAL Team 10, Virginia Beach, Va.

  1. Chief Fire Controlman (SEAL) Jacques J. Fontan, 36, of New Orleans, La. 
  2. Lt. Cmdr. (SEAL) Erik S. Kristensen, 33, of San Diego, Calif. 
  3. Electronics Technician 1st Class (SEAL) Jeffery A. Lucas, 33, of Corbett, Ore. 
  4. Lt. (SEAL) Michael M. McGreevy Jr., 30, of Portville, N.Y. 
  5. Hospital Corpsman 1st Class (SEAL) Jeffrey S. Taylor, 30, of Midway, W.Va. 

Army Night Stalkers
3rd Battalion, 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne), Hunter Army Air Field, Ga.

  1. Staff Sgt. Shamus O. Goare, 29, of Danville, Ohio. 
  2. Chief Warrant Officer Corey J. Goodnature, 35, of Clarks Grove, Minn. 
  3. Sgt. Kip A. Jacoby, 21, of Pompano Beach, Fla. 
  4. Sgt. 1st Class Marcus V. Muralles, 33, of Shelbyville, Ind. 
  5. Maj. Stephen C. Reich, 34, of Washington Depot, Conn. 
  6. Sgt. 1st Class Michael L. Russell, 31, of Stafford, Va. 
  7. Chief Warrant Officer Chris J. Scherkenbach, 40, of Jacksonville, Fla. 

HQ Company, 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne), Fort Campbell, Ky.

  1. Master Sgt. James W. Ponder III, 36, of Franklin, Tenn. 

            U.S. Navy SEALs are the maritime component of U.S. Special Operations Command and the Navy’s special operations force.  The SEALs take their name from the elements in which they operate – sea, air and land. Experts in special reconnaissance and direct action missions – SEALs continue to successfully execute DoD’s most important warfighting missions in the GWOT.

For more information on Naval Special Warfare visit: www.seal.navy.mil

Posted in Afghanistan, Asia, CENTCOM, Department of Defense, DoD, Marines, Middle East, Middle East & Muslim World, Military, Pakistan, ROTC, South Asia, South Asia - Middle East, U.S. Military, USMC | 3 Comments »

Obama wants Gay Military

Posted by thebosun on October 6, 2007

Courtesy of Big Dog posted at his website’s Commentary, Military on October 6th, 2007

Obama Wants Openly Gay Military

For a very long time the United States armed forces had a rule that made it illegal for gay people to serve in the military. Homosexuality was deemed incompatible with military life. When Clinton became President he tried to change that to appease the homo crowd who he had pandered to but the best he could do was get don’t ask, don’t tell passed. Now, B. Hussein Obama wants to end DADT and make it OK for openly gay people to serve. To Obama, since England and Israel do it that way, it is fine. I love the way that liberals say we should do something because some other country does it but let’s give Hussein this one and say that additionally, Israel requires service in the military from everyone when they graduate high school. It is compulsory service so if we should follow Israel’s lead, we need to start making EVERYONE serve in the armed forces.

There area number of reasons that homosexuals should not be serving in the military, though to be honest, in a firefight I would not give a hoot in hell. However, there are more negatives than positives in this issue and the military has to look out for national defense first and foremost. Allowing homosexuals in would be another problem and cause other issues that would take away from the mission of the military. It is not the job of the armed forces to have equality and fairness. Fat people are not allowed, those with poor sight, those with other conditions are not allowed. The military has decided that homosexuality is incompatible with military life and that is how it should stand.

Hussein Obama should also be careful what he asks for because of the unintended consequences. Let us suppose that Obama wins the presidency and has a majority Congress and gets this passed. The recruitment of soldiers would go way, way down. Then Obama would be forced to implement a draft in order to provide national defense, something he claims to have a grasp on. You see, the majority of our enlistees come from the mid west and the south. These areas are full of the Christian right, people who believe homosexuality is an abomination. The liberal elitists in New England and the west coast regions have much fewer people enlisting than does the south and mid west. If Hussein Obama allows gays to openly serve a bunch of people who are in will leave at the end of their hitch and those who thought about joining would skip it. This would mean Obama would have to institute the draft.

I realize that he said that he would bring the troops home so people might not feel any need to have a strong, full strength military. They might feel that way until the next natural disaster comes and there are no guard soldiers to assist or the next attack comes and we do not have the troops to deploy. No, B. Hussein will have to force people to serve, unless of course, his plan is to weaken the military to make it easier for Muslims to take control.

Why is it that Democrats who have never served in the military feel free to use the military for their social experiments?

Military phrases we will have to be careful with if Hussein gets his way:
Is your chute packed?
Go get your sh*t packed.
I’m locked, cocked, and ready to rock.
Who is the rear Admiral?
I only want to see asses and elbows.
Where did you get your training son? Fort Dix, sir.

Sphere: Related Content
Tags experiments, homosexuals, Military, Obama, socialism

Posted in apologists and appeasers, CENTCOM, Department of Defense, DoD, Liberal Society, Liberal Tolerance, Liberalism, Libs, Marines, Military Law, Social Engineering, U.S. Military, US Armed Forces, USMC | 10 Comments »

US Forces Free 42 Hostages

Posted by thebosun on May 27, 2007

BAGHDAD – U.S. forces raided an al-Qaida hide-out northeast of Baghdad on Sunday and freed 42 Iraqis imprisoned inside, including some who had been tortured and suffered broken bones, a senior U.S. military official said Sunday.

The raid was part of a 3-month-old security crackdown that included the deployment of 3,000 more U.S. troops to Diyala, a violent province north of the capital that has seen heavy fighting in recent weeks, said Maj. Gen. William Caldwell, the top U.S. military spokesman in Iraq.

Caldwell said Iraqis told U.S. forces about the hide-out: “The people in Diyala are speaking up against al-Qaida.” He said the 42 freed Iraqis marked the largest number of captives ever found in a single al-Qaida prison. Some of those freed were held for as long as four months and some had injuries from torture and were taken to medical facilities for treatment, he said.

For the rest of the story: 42 Freed

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Posted in 'War on Terror', 9/11, al-Qaeda, anti-US, Arabs, Bin Laden, Caliphate, Global Jihad, government agencies, International News, Iraq War, Islamic revolution, Islamic Theologian, Islamisation, Islamist, Islamofascism, Military, Muslim, Muslim Brotherhood, News, Osama Bin Laden, real war, Religion, religious war, Terrorism, U.S. Military, US Armed Forces, US hater, US of A, USMC, War, War and Peace, War BLOGGING, World at War, World News and Politics, World War III | Leave a Comment »

Milblogging Vote is On!

Posted by Rosemary Welch on February 24, 2007

Don’t forget to get over to Milblogging.com and have your say. You must register to vote, so make sure you do this first. I find it is good to have this URL saved so after you register, you can find your way back. (I have a hard time manuevering around that. lol) Have at it!

Posted in USMC, Veterans, War BLOGGING | Leave a Comment »

Soldiers Send Christmas Greetings

Posted by thebosun on December 25, 2006

Soldiers Send Christmas Greetings

Courtesy of CBN News

Armed Forces News

CBNNews.com – Many military families cannot spend this Christmas at home with family. They’re stationed overseas serving their country. Watch the video on this page to see Christmas greetings from numerous soldiers to their families. There are approximately 50 to 60 greetings from military stationed at various bases around the world. Merry Christmas and may God Bless our wonderful armed service members and their loved ones. Click here to watch video

Top Stories from CBNNews US

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Posted in 'War on Terror', Christian, Defense, Department of Defense, Freedom, Give peace a chance, Give war a chance, Marines, Middle East, Military, News, Persian gulf, real war, U.S. Military, US Armed Forces, US News, USMC, Veterans, War, War and Peace, War BLOGGING, World at War, World News and Politics | Leave a Comment »

Iraqi Army Catches Baqubah Insurgents

Posted by thebosun on December 16, 2006

Courtesy of Centcom Multi-National Forces Iraq

Friday, 15 December 2006

BAQUBAH — The Iraqi Army led a successful offensive operation here recently, capturing 10 suspected insurgents and rescuing a kidnapped 16-year-old Iraqi boy being held for a $150,000 ransom.

Iraqi Soldiers from 5th Iraqi Army conducted searches, while the U.S. Army’s 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, from Fort Hood, Texas, cordoned off several neighborhoods.

Maj. Kalil Malek Ahmad, commander, 4th Battalion, 2nd Brigade, 5th Iraqi Army, said his Soldiers identified insurgents with the help of intelligence sources. 

Lt. Col. Morris Goins, commander, 3rd Brigade’s 1-12 Combined Arms Battalion, which provided the cordon for the search, said the operation gave the Iraqi Army an opportunity to demonstrate it’s capability to play a primary role in military operations.

“Iraq is a sovereign nation. They have an Iraqi Police department. They have an Iraqi Army,” said Goins, a native of Southern Pines, N.C. “It’s important for them to conduct these operations. They are in the lead and we assist when needed.” 

This most recent search for insurgents, which is part of a larger effort, “will help local residents by driving a wedge between the Iraqi people and al Qaeda,” said Goins.

Al Qaeda operatives are attempting to disrupt Coalition Forces and have threatened local residents in the neighborhoods of Khatoon and Mufrek, he said. 

Capt. Scott Steele from the U.S. Army’s military training team in Baqubah, and native of Faripault, Minn., said it is important for the Iraqi Army to lead such operations in anticipation of full autonomy.

“If the Iraqis take over, the United States can leave,” he said. “We’re just helping them along so that they can secure their own country by themselves.” 

Goins said his unit was presented with some challenges while working with the Iraqis, such as language barriers and differences in communications platforms, but those obstacles were overcome with prior coordination.

“As with any brand new government, you have challenges,” said Goins. “People often think the United States was born yesterday. It’ll take a little while. There’s a lot of promise here. The work is hard but it’s good.”

Photo: Soldiers from 4th Battalion, 2nd Brigade, 5th Iraqi Army Division get ready to enter a suspected insurgent’s home during a massive cordon and search operation conducted in a neighborhood in Baqubah, Iraq, Dec. 2. Official Department of Defense photo.

 

Posted in 'War on Terror', al-Qaeda, Arabian Gulf Region, Arabs, counter terrorism, counterterrorism, Department of Defense, Give war a chance, Global Jihad, International News, Iraq, Islamic revolution, Islamic Theologian, Islamist, Islamofascism, Middle East, Middle East & Muslim World, News, real war, Religious Freedom, religious war, Terrorism, U.S. Military, US Armed Forces, US News, USMC, War, War and Peace, War BLOGGING, World at War, World News and Politics | Leave a Comment »

Christmas Greetings in Iraq from Michael

Posted by thebosun on December 15, 2006

Photo credit from Michael's card last year thanking me for my support.  Please support Michael Yon's embeded reporting.The Bosun just received Michael Yon’s latest correspondence and would like to share Michael’s email with you.   As you know, Michael is an independent journalist who covers the war zones in several countries.  Michael has put himself in harms way to get his dispatches right and bring home the truth to you. 

Respectfully, Bosun

 

From Michael

Greetings,

I am still awaiting permission to embed with troops in Iraq. The Army embeds have been approved, but there was a hold-up with a request to embed with the Marines. Unfortunately, word is just getting out that Public Affairs lost three excellent people to a bomb in Ramadi. One of those was Major Megan McClung, a Marine about whom journalists spoke with great appreciation and admiration for her professionalism and courage. Also killed was Captain Travis Patriquin, another officer whom journalists regarded in a very positive light for his dedication to his profession and his willingness to get the hard work done. After volunteering to go on the same mission to escort journalists, Specialist Vincent J. Pomante III was also killed in that blast. Knowing that Vincent volunteered to go on a mission in the most dangerous place in Iraq says it all. The thoughts and prayers of many journalists are going out to the families of our fallen.

Another dispatch is posted: No Darker Heart.

This site runs completely from reader support. As I make final preparations for an embed that will hopefully enable me to celebrate Christmas with our troops in Iraq, I want to extend my appreciation to all of those whose generosity makes this work possible.

Respectfully,

Michael
Michael Yon 
P O Box 416
Westport Pt MA 02791

Posted in 'War on Terror', al-Qaeda, Arabian Gulf Region, Arabs, counter terrorism, counterterrorism, Defense, Department of Veterans Affairs, Give war a chance, Global Jihad, Middle East, Military, News, real war, U.S. Military, US Armed Forces, US News, USMC, War and Peace, War BLOGGING, World at War, World News and Politics, Writers | Leave a Comment »

Leaders working toward security handover

Posted by thebosun on December 1, 2006

Courtesy of Central Command

Leaders working toward security handover, dismantling al Qaeda in Iraq

Friday, 01 December 2006

Wearing new uniforms, members of the Iraqi National Police Quick Reaction Force in Baghdad assemble to receive instructions for their next mission. New uniforms are part of the goal to create a credible police force and gain the trust and confidence of the Iraqi people. (Photo by U.S. Army Sgt. Shannon Crane)

Wearing new uniforms, members of the Iraqi National Police Quick Reaction Force in Baghdad assemble to receive instructions for their next mission. New uniforms are part of the goal to create a credible police force and gain the trust and confidence of the Iraqi people. (Photo by U.S. Army Sgt. Shannon Cranne)

BAGHDAD

— Maj. Gen. William B. Caldwell, Multi-National Force – Iraq spokesman, spoke to members of the Arab media during a round-table discussion Thursday in the wake of President Bush’s meeting with Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki in Amman, Jordan.

During the president’s meeting with the prime minister they agreed to “accelerate” the transfer of security responsibility from Coalition Forces to Iraqi Security Forces. 

Caldwell told reporters Coalition Forces would do their best to quell violence in Iraq for as long as the Iraqi Government needed them. The transition of responsibility would occur when Iraqi leaders are ready, and not before, he said.

“Iraqi Forces need more support from Multi-National Force – Iraq,” Caldwell said. “They need more troops and equipment before Iraq can ask American and Coalition Forces to pull out of Iraq.” 

Caldwell emphasized that any solution to problems in Iraq will be an “Iraqi solution,” not one dictated by Coalition Forces or the United States.

“The president is committed to help the (Iraqi) government see it through until the Iraqi prime minister says U.S. assistance is no longer needed. At that time, American troops will go home,” he said. 

Responding to questions on the recent rise in violence throughout Iraq, Caldwell said the current situation is “unacceptable,” and that Coalition Forces are doing everything they can to ease the problem.

Caldwell showed the reporters photos of more than 30 terror leaders who have been killed or captured in the last few months. (Click here for the Slides

“The more we can do to bring down these operations, the greater our ability to bring down the levels of violence,” Caldwell said.

However, he said, military force is not enough. 

“There needs to be a political and military solution,” Caldwell said. “A military solution alone will not solve the problem of violence. I’m encouraged to hear that the prime minister and political parties are talking about a political solution.”

Until then, he said, Coalition Forces will keep training Iraqi Security Forces to maintain peace in the streets of Iraq and work toward the accelerated transfer of security responsibility agreed upon by the president and prime minister. 

Dr. Ali al-Dabbagh, a spokesman for the Iraqi Government, joined Caldwell during his discussion with the media. Al-Dabbagh said Iraqi troops could take control of their own security operations as early as June 2007.

He said the ability of Iraqi Security Forces to deal with terrorists and insurgent militias on their own will bolster the legitimacy of Iraq’s democratically elected government. 

“When Iraqi Security Forces have the ability to deal with the militias, then the Iraqi elected government will be strong,” al-Dabbagh said. “As long as militias operate in Iraq, it will be difficult for the Iraqi government to uphold the rule of law.”

“There are as many as 23 different militias operating in Baghdad alone,” Caldwell said. “The prime minister wants to deal with them within the political process. The Coalition Force’s position is that if somebody acts outside of the law – murders, executions, kidnappings – we’re going to go after them as individuals while the prime minister continues the political task of going after them as organizations.” 

Al-Dabbagh said anyone who commits violence against Iraqis is a criminal and will be dealt with as such.

“No one is above the law if he breaks the law,” al-Dabbbagh said. “These militias have no right to carry weapons in the streets. The government will deal with all of them equally.” 

With an accelerated timetable to make security a solely Iraqi responsibility, Caldwell said 2007 will be a “year of transition.”

Transition, he said, will begin with intensified training of Iraqi Army and Police forces.

“You’ll see a greater number of Coalition Forces that will be embedded and working beside Iraqi Army and Iraqi Police. Where before you had an 18-person team, you may now see a 54-person team. The goal is to focus on professionalism and the training of leaders.”

Caldwell said the transition will include a gradual pullback of Coalition combat operations as Iraqi troops begin to shoulder the load. 

“You will see far fewer Coalition Forces doing military operations, and far more Iraqi Forces,” Caldwell said. “The Coalition Force will take on more of a support role than it ever has before. Iraqi forces will clearly be in the lead.”

 

(Compiled by Combined Press Information Center)

Posted in 'War on Terror', al-Qaeda, Arabian Gulf Region, Arabs, Caliphate, counter terrorism, counterterrorism, Defense, Department of Defense, Freedom, Give war a chance, International News, Iraq, Islamic Theologian, Islamist, Middle East, Middle East & Muslim World, Middle East Politics, Milestones, Military, Moderate Arabs, National Counterterrorism Center, News, Politics, Politics/Debate, real war, Security matters, Terrorism, U.S. Military, US Armed Forces, US News, USMC, Veterans, War, War and Peace, War BLOGGING, World at War, World News and Politics | Leave a Comment »