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Location: Ewa Beach, HI, United States

I got out of the Army in October 2007, and went back to being a Paramedic. I am now working as an RN in Case Management.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Iraqi Army Progress

The time has come to let our chicks fly I supppose. Last week we started allowing the Platoon Leaders take the lead in the convoys to and from our missions, and they have proven their capability in that regard. We also let them plan and execute a raid with no American leadership. We were there, but only as observers. They took 11 detainees (people on the black list), many of which were highly sought after. Next week, they begin patrolling without Americans, we will go on a few here and there, but for the most part they will be on their own. A few of the things we have tried to instill:
1. Strong NCO corps. Most com block and third world countries have armys that are little more than a well armed rabble. Their officers run things, but it is beneath them to train the men, and even if there is a rank structure, there is no power to lead given to the higher ranking non officer types. With strong NCOs that have been given a mission (and the necessary responsibility and power) to train and ready their men for combat, an Army grows infinitely stronger. I think they are beginning to accept the NCO rank structure, and I definitely see it in use on the ground.
2. Intelligence. When you are out patrolling, you have to be nice to the people in your sector. Try to find out problems they are having, and if it is in your capability to correct these things, then do. This will open doors to the Army for information gathering. If the residents think you care about them and their lives, then they will be much more apt to risk giving you intel on enemy activity. It also can help to boost civic pride and responsibility. If you can do that, then people will want their neighborhoods free of thugs and others that do harmful things.
3. Taking care of the joes. If the lowest ranking soldiers know the mission, and have been properly equipped, trained, and fed, they normally will have a high esprit de corps, and won't run from a fight, shirk their responsibilities, or become corrupt.
I have worked harder than I ever have in my life training these men, and have sacrificed much. I couldn't be prouder with the result. My company of Iraqi soldiers is the most respected out of the battalion, and set the example for the others to follow. I feel like I have come to Iraq and actually been a part of making history, and hopefully doing a large part in restoring civility and freedom to a long opressed people.


Anonymous Jenn said...

Chad, that's wonderful and so beautifully written.

4:33 PM  

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