Dear Interested Readers,
Significant weapons caches found; and among others, a high ranking AQI member captured. Our troops feeling very proud as a new building for the Rashid District Council Hall is opened; a girls school is refurbished, where there was no electricity or usable restrooms; and teaching sanitation and personal health in small villages.
Multi-National Corps - Iraq
Public Affairs Office, Camp Victory
APO AE 09342
April 30, 2008
MND-B soldiers find 2 significant cache finds in Baghdad
FOB FALCON - MND - April 28, Soldiers of Co A, 1st Bn, 22nd Inf Regt, 1st BCT, 4th ID seized 107 mm rockets and an incomplete EFP during security patrols. The soldiers discovered the cache acting on info provided by an informant in the Saydiyah community, after they detained 5 individuals and a sixth suspected of plotting terrorist activities against Iraqis and CF in Baghdad.
Soldiers from 2nd Sqdrn, 2nd Stryker Cav Regt also discovered a mortar system near a mosque in Abu T'shir, while acting on a tip from an anonymous citizen.
Local citizens fend off AQI attack
TIKRIT - Defensive actions by local citizens of the Diyala Province against AQI resulted in the death of 12 insurgents, April 28.
The SOIs' ability to repel the initial attack provided Iraqi SF enough time to conduct a hasty offensive op with minimal CF support.
Iraqi soldiers turn in weapons cache
CAMP STRIKER - Iraqi Soldiers retrieved a cache in the vicinity of PB Lion's Den, approx. 7 km southwest of Baghdad, April 27.
Info from a detainee led the Soldiers to the cache that was buried by a canal, consisting of 80 machine gun rounds, 4 69 mm mortar rounds, a 120 mm mortar round, and 2 bags of homemade explosives.
MND-B Soldiers seize weapons cache
BAGHDAD - MND-Baghdad Soldiers confiscated several weapons caches in separate actions across Baghdad, April 28.
Soldiers from Co A, 4th Bn, 64th AR, 1st BCT, 4th ID, seized a weapons cache consisting of 10 RPGs, 2 launching tubes, a suicide vest, 2 grenades, a 105 mm round, two 60 mm mortar rounds and an unknown amount of home-made explosive in west Rashid.
MND-B Soldiers seize emplaced EFP, rocket, munitions cache
BAGHDAD - April 27, in the Abu T'shir community, at approx. 6:30 a.m., Soldiers from Troop C, 7th Sqdrn, 10th Cav Regt, 1st BCT, 4th ID., seized a 107 mm rocket with launcher. At approx. 2:15 p.m., Soldiers from Co F, 2nd Sqdrn, 2nd Stryker Cav Regt, attached to the 1st BCT, 4th ID, located an EFP IED during a combat patrol.
Soldiers from 4th BCT, 10th Mtn Div, patrolling the New Baghdad area of eastern Baghdad, uncovered a
munitions cache at approx. 8:50 a.m., April 28. The cache seized by the Soldiers from 1st Bn, 66th AR, consisted of 20 mortar rounds and 6 RPGs.
PRESS DESK BAGHDAD
Rashid community leaders open district council hall (Baghdad)
BAGHDAD – Leaders from the Rashid district community, local Iraqi SF, and 1st BCT, 4th ID, gathered to demonstrate their joint commitment to improve the quality of life for Iraqi citizens during the commemoration of a new building for the Rashid District Council Hall on April 26.
“This building provides the leaders and citizens of Rashid a meeting place to voice their concerns to their elected officials, to plan, and with wisdom, map out the way of progress for all Iraqis here in Rashid,” said Col. Ted Martin, cmdr, 1st BCT.
The Rashid District Council is a self-governance program, where community leaders work with the estimated 1.2 million people of the Rashid district to help restore order to local neighborhoods. “When terrorism attempted to halt creativity and progress, our efforts were pulled together to repel all forms of terrorism for the purpose of moving forward and rebuilding,” said Yosif, head chairman of the Rashid DC. “We are hopeful that it becomes the first of many projects in Al-Rashid district and throughout Iraq,” Yosif added.
An example of ongoing efforts to stabilize everyday life for the people of Rashid is the unveiling of a new construction project to build a HQ for the Civil Services Department in the Jihad community of Rashid, on April, 25, according to Lt. Col. Paul Hossenlopp, deputy comm. officer, 1st BCT. "The CSD Building will be the first community services building in the Rashid district of southern Baghdad. It will eventually operate with the support of the GOI and provide permanent jobs for local communities, by creating and sustaining an Iraqi workforce employed to rebuild Baghdad’s infrastructure and restore essential services to the citizens of Rashid," said Lt. Col. Hossenlopp.
The construction project employs an estimated 400 Iraqis and provides vocational tutoring and on-the-job training for the unskilled laborers. Based on the program’s success, other CSD Buildings will be planned for the Rashid district and Baghdad.
- 30 -
Sons of Iraq capture key terrorist
BAGHDAD – April 28, during a meeting with a local sheik and other citizens, a SoI member indicated that a known key terrorist was nearby. The SoI member detained 2 suspects and turned them over to MND-B soldiers for further ID. One of the suspects was positively identified as a high-ranking member of AQI. The captured terrorist is a prominent member of an AQI cell that operates in Baghdad and the southern outskirts of Baghdad. He is reportedly known for VBIED attacks, IED attacks, sniper attacks on CF, the kidnapping and murder of Iraqis, and weapons trafficking.
“The SoI again prove to be heroes of the day; they found this extremely dangerous terrorist and took him off the streets,” said Maj. Al Hing, spokesperson for 2nd Stryker BCT, 25th ID. “His actions directly led to the deaths of both U.S. Soldiers and Iraqi citizens. The partnership between the SoI and CF, working together to capture this known terrorist, makes for a safer and more stable Iraq.”
Soldiers from MND-B continue to work with the Iraqi SF and conduct operations to maintain pressure on AQI and any other foreign terrorists and Special Groups criminals by targeting their leadership, networks and sanctuaries.
PRESS DESK BAGHDAD
Two wanted men captured in northern Iraq
BAGHDAD – Continuing to use info gleaned from an op Apr. 21, CF captured 2 suspected AQI terrorists in Mosul. One of the suspects is a wanted man who is believed to directly conspire with several senior terrorist leaders in the city, including one who is known to conduct attacks against Coalition and Iraqi SF.
Iraqi and CF captured an alleged AQI operative in Kirkuk and one additional suspected terrorist. The alleged operative is believed to have ties to senior terrorist leaders in both Kirkuk and Mosul.
- 30 -
Refurbished School Opens in Salman Pak
By Maj. Joe Sowers
3rd HBCT, 3rd Inf. Div.
Local leaders cut the ribbon signifying the opening of the Salman Pak Girls Secondary School, April 24.
FOB HAMMER — Leaders of the Salman Pak Council, the IA the 1st Bn, 15th Inf Regt and 2nd Bn, 6th Inf Regt, gathered in Salman Pak for the ceremony. Members of the Salman Pak Council brought the decrepit school to the attention of 1-15th Inf. Regt. leadership in January. The school was in disrepair and local leaders’ desire to improve educational facilities matched the goals of the battalion leadership.
“We were looking for a big school to refurbish to make an impact,” said Capt. Matt Givens, the civil-military ops officer for 1-15th Inf. Regt. “It was the only female secondary school in the area. Before the refurbishment, the school was pretty much falling down. It had no electricity, and students couldn’t use the restrooms.” Givens said the project completely overhauled the building. Iraqi contractors repaired structural damage, erected a security wall, rewired electrical outlets, replastered the outside and repainted the inside.
Two of the most significant improvements were connecting the restrooms to a septic tank and the construction of a concrete courtyard. “Unpaved courtyards get quite muddy when it rains,” said Givens, who has facilitated 13 different school refurbishment projects during his unit’s 14-month deployment. “School administrators commonly ask for concrete courtyards for assemblies and recreation.”
Givens said these projects make a difference in the community. “People view it as you’re helping take care of their children and it helps to build trust within the community,” he said. “They are excited when they see you helping their children.”
The 1-15th Inf. Regt. is assigned to the 3rd HBCT, 3rd ID, from Fort Benning, Ga. The 2-6th Inf. Regt. is assigned to the 2nd Bde, 1st Armored Div from Baumholder, Germany, and will soon replace the 3rd HBCT in the Mada’in Qada.
Iraqis Learn Longevity Tips from Coalition
By Sgt. 1st Class Tami Hillis
4th BCT, 3rd Inf. Div.
Soldiers from 703rd BSB, 4th BCT, teach villagers the importance of purifying water during a cooperative medical engagement in the village of Samrah.
FOB KALSU — CF are trying to increase Iraqis life expectancy by teaching basic hygiene, and reinforcing the importance of drinking clean water. Under the auspice of a cooperative medical engagement, Soldiers from 703rd BSB, 4th BCT, 3rd ID, taught classes on water purification and handed out 150 water purification systems to families in Samrah.
The engagement allowed villagers to learn about basic public health. Most of the classes focused on the importance of clean water to prevent gastrointestinal issues and skin problems experienced in the area. The local drinking water comes from a canal used by animals and as a result, residents have been victimized by worms and skin diseases, said Spc. Lori MacFarland, a medic for 703rd BSB, who taught the classes.
The local sheikh selected 5 males and 5 females from different households throughout the village to participate in the train-the-trainer course. Medics from the unit scooped a bucket of water from the canal, strained it through a white clothe and boiled it to show residents all the sediments that still remained despite filtration. “By boiling the water it kills the living organisms and makes it better for them to drink, which will mean fewer illnesses,” MacFarland said. Medics strained the water several more times until clear. “After that I drank the water it gave them the confidence that it was clean,” MacFarland said.
Classes also included instructions on brushing and flossing teeth, hand sanitation, washing food, and using the purification systems. “Overall I think this was a step in the right direction,” Woody said. “It’s sustainable and the nice thing about the classes is now they have something they can use.” The Soldiers also left behind Arabic instructions so other families could benefit from the classes, and donated toothpaste, toothbrushes, dental floss, basins, straining cloth and goodies for the children. “After I went and came back I thought, ‘Wow, they really did need this class,’” MacFarland said. “It’s a good idea to go out and train others and have them get the info out to the other families.”
Right now the unit is scheduled to conduct another CME in a different location May 24.