Media

ISW Webcast with BG Nixon

In this six-part interview, ISW President Kimberly Kagan discusses MND-N with BG James C. Nixon.  Nixon is the Deputy Commanding General of Operations in MND-N.  During the interview Nixon gives an overview of MND-N, discusses the relationship between the different components of the area of operation such as Diyala and Mosul, the impact of this year's provincial elections in Iraq and the subsequent seating of provincial councils, the current challenges in the north related to Arab-Kurd tensions, and enemy threats.

In this six-part Webcast interview, ISW President Kimberly Kagan speaks with BG Nixon of MND-N.

Watch Part 1

 

Watch Part 2

 

Watch Part 3

 

Watch Part 4

 

Watch Part 5

 

Watch Part 6

 

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Transcript: 

<p style="text-align: left">&nbsp;INTERVIEW OF<br />
&nbsp;BRIGADIER GENERAL JAMES C. NIXON,<br />
&nbsp;Deputy Commanding General of Operations,<br />
&nbsp;25th Infantry Division<br />
&nbsp;CONDUCTED BY<br />
&nbsp; DR. KIM KAGAN, Institute for the Study of War<br />
&nbsp;[Transcript produced from webcast recording.]</p>
<p style="text-align: left">&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left">&nbsp;Prepared by:<br />
&nbsp;MALLOY TRANSCRIPTION SERVICE<br />
&nbsp;7040 31st Street, N.W.<br />
&nbsp;Washington, D.C.&nbsp; 20015<br />
&nbsp;(202) 362 6622</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><br />
&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;<br />
&nbsp;[Video clip No. 1 of 6 begins.]</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><br />
<b>&nbsp;KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Hello.&nbsp; This is Kim Kagan.<br />
&nbsp;<b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; Hi, Kim.&nbsp; How are you?<br />
<b>&nbsp;KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; I'm doing very well.&nbsp; How are you doing out there?<br />
<b>&nbsp;NIXON</b>:&nbsp; I'm doing fine.&nbsp; I apologize for the timing issue but glad to get the opportunity to talk with you tonight.<br />
&nbsp;<b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; We are pleased to have the opportunity to talk with you.&nbsp; If it looks like everything is streaming and ready, I'll go ahead and start asking you some large questions and talking with you for the interview.&nbsp; Everything look good on your end?<br />
&nbsp;<b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; Okay.&nbsp; That sounds good.&nbsp; Sure does.<br />
&nbsp;<b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Terrific.</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><br />
&nbsp;Well, this is Kim Kagan with the Institute for the Study of War, and today, we have with us Brigadier General James C. Nixon, the Deputy Commanding General of Operations for the 25th Infantry Division, which arrived in Iraq in November 2008 and assumed command of Multi National Division North on the 9th of December.</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><br />
&nbsp;General Nixon, thanks so much for joining us.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; Thank you for having me tonight, Kim.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; We would very much like to understand and have you explain some of the situations that you face in Multi National Division North, which after all is such a complex area of Iraq. The first question I would ask of you is can you tell us about the problem set that you face in Multi-National Division North and perhaps give us an overview of who lives in MND North, and then we could perhaps go through the potential drivers of instability up there.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; Okay, I'd be happy to.<br />
As you know, it is a very complex area, a little bit larger than the size of Pennsylvania for the four provinces, excluding the KRG, but in the north, you've got Ninewa, which, the major city is Mosul there.&nbsp; You have Salah ad Din in the center, and then to the eastern side, you have Diyala, and then above that, of course, Kirkuk. &nbsp;As you know, each one of the provinces is very different.&nbsp; Each one has a different subset of issues.&nbsp; I can start really with Diyala, which I know the best of the four, and I will work around the area. In Diyala, it really is a microcosm of Iraq because all of the issues resident in Iraq are inside of Diyala.&nbsp; It has about 55 percent Sunni and about 35 percent Shia, 15 percent or so Kurdish.&nbsp; So you've got an ethnic mix.&nbsp; It is bordered by Iran.&nbsp; It is close to Baghdad.&nbsp; It has had at times both JAM and al Qaeda influences, and then it has a disputed area up north, adjacent with Kurdistan. &nbsp;It is one of our more challenging areas because it is so nuanced, and I can answer specific questions as we go forward. &nbsp;In Kirkuk itself, largely stable security has very much improved since the Sons of Iraq came on board in the southern western sectors.&nbsp; The combination of the Sons of Iraq, a strong police force in Kirkuk, and now the 12th IA have increased the stability, but obviously, the overriding concern in Kirkuk continues to be the Arab Kurd tensions. Again, I will be happy to go into further detail on that.<br />
&nbsp;In Salah ad Din, probably our most progressed, progressive of the four provinces, a strong functioning provincial government, good economic base, a strong Iraqi Army leadership.&nbsp; The major issue there really is disenfranchised personnel, primarily the former regime elements, and there is a large number because, as you know, Tikrit was really the center, Tikrit and Al Daur being the center of the former Baath party.<br />
&nbsp;Then finally, our biggest issue at the moment is Mosul in the Province of Ninewa, and that still continues to be the largest threat of al Qaeda.&nbsp; It has not had a very strong provincial government, although that is about to change, and also has disputed areas and Arab Kurd tensions as well.<br />
&nbsp;I have walked around, but I guess I would like to say that across the board, what we have seen is great progress on a number of fronts, although there are clearly challenges ahead, but I would like to highlight most of those challenges are based largely on the successes that have been made in past rotations and in this rotations.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Thank you very much. General Nixon, I understand from my team that my questions are not audible on the webcast.&nbsp; So might I ask you please to repeat the questions before you answer them as we go forward?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; Absolutely.&nbsp; Sure.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Let's begin with Diyala Province, and perhaps you can explain to us whether the majority of violent activity within Diyala and provincial instability arises from enemy groups or whether it arises from ethno sectarian tensions.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; The question was whether the majority of violence in Diyala arises from ethnic groups or enemy insurgents or terrorists, and that is a difficult question.<br />
&nbsp;If I could re-characterize it, I would re-characterize it to say that the majority of violence that I see in Diyala right now is based on a struggle for power amongst the elites.&nbsp; And some of that is manifested in ethnic groups, and some of it is manifested by insurgent organizations, either al Qaeda or, in some cases, to a lesser degree, JAM special groups, but largely al Qaeda and other Sunni insurgents.<br />
&nbsp;I would say that the level of violence in Diyala is at its lowest level, really since 2003, and largely the population has been passive.&nbsp; But based on this increased security, I think there are growing expectations, primarily for central services but also for jobs.&nbsp; And the elections, having now elected a Sunni provincial government or a Sunni majority provincial government, I think unless those expectations are addressed, then there is potential for that violence to increase, unless we can get those essential services and jobs out to the population.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Can you tell us more about the individuals who have been elected to the provincial government?&nbsp; Has the provincial council been seated, the provincial council chairman appointed and the provincial governor appointed yet?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; Well, like all things in Diyala and Iraq, it is going through the process right now.&nbsp; The provincial council has met&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; the incoming provincial council has met a number of times, and we believe they have selected&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; they have met the requirements to meet post-elections or post-the announcing of the elections.&nbsp; We believe they have selected a provincial governor, one deputy governor, the provincial council chairman, and deputy provincial council chairman.<br />
That is my understanding, both from the provincial reconstruction team, as well as those that we are seeing over the video here.<br />
It appears that they formed a coalition between the Tawafuq, which is a Sunni political organization, the Kurdish, as well as ISCI and Shia.&nbsp; So it is a coalition, truly a coalition that expands all the ethnic groups.&nbsp; Currently, my belief is the provincial governor will be from the Tawafuq party.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left">[Video clip No. 2 of 6 begins.]<br />
<b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; As you look at the politics in Diyala, I would be very curious for your assessment of how much the national parties influence some of these local politicians.&nbsp; For example, to what extent do the KDP and PUK actually give directives to the Kurdish members of the provincial government in Diyala?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; That's really hard for me to address.&nbsp; Obviously, that is not one of my primary focuses.<br />
&nbsp;I would suggest that because of the location of Diyala, there are external influences, both from Kurdistan through the political parties as you state and from Baghdad.&nbsp; It is a key area that has external influences, both from Kurdistan, Baghdad, as well as because of its location from Iran.&nbsp; So there is great pressure, I believe, on the political leadership, as well as the rest of the mechanism, the security apparatus in Diyala exerted from external factors.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Can you explain a little bit more what interest, for example, the Prime Minister might have in the outcome of the political settlement of Diyala?&nbsp; Likewise, what is the Iranian interest in Diyala Province?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; I think Diyala, one, obviously next to Iran, there has been a historic gateway over the years from Iran through Diyala into Baghdad.&nbsp; That has been for hundreds of years.&nbsp; So there is great interest.&nbsp; There are a number of Iranian visitors that flow through that on a historic gateway to visit some of the sites there.<br />
&nbsp;I think the interest from the Prime Minister is a number of things.&nbsp; One, it is of course right outside of Baghdad.&nbsp; So there is a central, close location.&nbsp; There has been an ongoing struggle since 2003 between first JAM, then al Qaeda, now largely balanced and secure, but pockets of both exist inside of Diyala.<br />
&nbsp;And then, obviously, it is also next to Kurdistan, and so you have the disputed area in the vicinity of Khanaqeen.&nbsp; So there are a number of factors that make Diyala incredibly important to Baghdad, to Kurdistan, as well as Iran, and that results in interest by all the parties.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; We have read over the past weeks about an Iraqi led military operation in Diyala Province in the vicinity of Balad Ruz and Turki Village.&nbsp; Would it be possible for you to describe the purpose of those operations, as well as their conduct and their result?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON:</b>&nbsp; Sure.&nbsp; When we arrived back into Iraq on this latest rotation, about five months ago, one of the things that was most surprising to me was a pretty significant support zone, al Qaeda's or ISI support zone, south of Balad ruz and the Turki Bowl region. It was defended by a belt of IEDs, and then we had some significant reporting that led us to believe they had set up a long term support zone.&nbsp; Of course, that sits along lines of communication from Iran into Baghdad but, most importantly, sits right outside of Baghdad.<br />
So we began an operation in complete partnership with the Iraqi Army to deliberately clear that area, to hold it, to bring back displaced personnel, because there was a number of villages that al Qaeda and ISI had forced the villagers out, and we were in the process of building that location.<br />
&nbsp;It has been an ongoing operation for a number of months, and it has been extremely successful, extremely well coordinated between the Coalition Forces and our Iraqi Army partners.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; What effect do you think that those operations will have on AQI and ISI's ability to continue the fight in Diyala Province?&nbsp; How have they reacted to these operations?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; I think we have significantly disrupted al Qaeda and ISI operations inside of Diyala.&nbsp; The support zones and the safe locations that they have to really hide are becoming reduced daily because we are systematically clearing those, and we are holding them. We now have the capacity in the Iraqi Army to push those forces forward.&nbsp; We have built the capacity in the Iraqi police then to establish police stations, and that is leading us to what really the main effort in Diyala is, getting displaced personnel back into their homes and then rebuilding the destruction that has really occurred over the last four or five years inside of Diyala. That over time will separate the few hard line terrorists from the population, and then, frankly, it is just a matter of time, al Qaeda and ISI, that we continue to defeat that organization inside of Diyala.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; In past years, particularly in 2007 and early 2008, when the ISF and Coalition Forces have conducted operations in Diyala Province.&nbsp; AQI and ISI have moved from central locations in Diyala to remote areas, like Lake Hamrin or to the border of Salah ad Din Province.&nbsp; Have you seen the enemy being able to move and re-concentrate elsewhere outside of Diyala?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; Well, clearly, there are indications of them moving.&nbsp; They do not have the safe locations that they've had in the past, to the same magnitude, because of the increased capacity of the Iraqi Army.<br />
&nbsp;So the luxury that we really have in Diyala now that we didn't have in the past was the ability to hold the population centers with the Iraqi police in partnership with Coalition Forces and then the increased capacity of the Iraqi Army to go out and clear those type of support zones, again, in conjunction with Coalition Forces, and then stay, hold that terrain, bring the personnel back in, and then ultimately build it.&nbsp; Frankly, that was mostly a matter of capacity early on.&nbsp; The increased security and increased capacity of the Iraqi Army has allowed us to do it during this rotation.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; I have a question that I am not sure that you can answer, and if you can't, just tell me, but you referred to the lines of communication from Iran running into Diyala Province, and you spoke about&nbsp;&nbsp;the enemy in Diyala being mainly AQI and ISI.&nbsp; The implication is that these Iranian lines are supporting in some way AQI and ISI activity.&nbsp; Is that the case, and if so, what kind of support do you see for Sunni groups coming in from Iran?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; I don't want to get into the specifics of lines of communication or support. I would say overall that there continues to be indicators of Iranian influence on a number of levels inside of Diyala.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Now, as we started to look at the ongoing operations in MND North, we noticed last week or the week before, an uptick in activities in Dalouiya which, of course, lies along the border, relatively, between Diyala and Salah ad Din Provinces.<br />
&nbsp;Can you tell us more about what's been happening in that part of Salah ad Din and whether it is connected to the Diyala operation?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; Well, I think one of the things that MND North obviously brings to the fight is the ability to synchronize operations across the provinces, and there clearly is a scene that has developed, that had developed over time between Salah ad Din and Diyala.&nbsp; So we are working both in Diyala and Salah ad Din to bring forces together, again, to clear those areas and then ultimately to hold them.&nbsp; So that is a supporting effort into the larger operation that we have got going inside of Diyala.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left">&nbsp;[Video clip No. 3 of 6 begins.]<br />
&nbsp;<b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Now, we have spoken about AQI, ISI, and JAM for a little bit.&nbsp; Can you tell us whether there are other enemy groups within MND North that continue to have legs?&nbsp; For example, do you see the Naqshabandi group, Ansar al Sunnah, or the former Baathist elements continuing the fight within MND North?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; Well, I think there are a number of groups that are out there that will continue to fight, and there is some tactical level of coordination between the pipe swingers, if you will.<br />
&nbsp;Probably, the one that I personally see as having the biggest legs right now is the Jaish Al Naqshabandi, or JRTN, just from a standpoint of organization and their information operations and then their linkage back into the former regime elements.&nbsp; That is one we take very seriously.&nbsp; Obviously, they are focused on Coalition Forces, and we are very focused on the disruption and defeat of that network, but that is one that I am personally focused on.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Can you talk about the new provincial council forming in Salah ad Din Province?&nbsp; That was one of the provinces, obviously, where the elections did not have a clear and specific outcome.</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; In Salah ad Din?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Mm hmm.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON:</b>&nbsp; I have a little bit less visibility on Salah ad Din, but the provincial council has met and formed and picked, I believe, or at least announced that Abu Mazan, a businessman, will take the lead. There has been a little bit or at least reporting of a little bit of turmoil over that, but the reporting that I am receiving is that they are on track. I expect, based on the effectiveness of the last provincial council, that the transition in Salah ad Din will actually be one of the more efficient across the provinces that we are focused on, but, again, I have a little bit less visibility in that area right now.</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Can we talk a little bit about Ninewa Province?&nbsp; I would certainly be interested in your assessment of the rise of a new Sunni party.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; I'm sorry.&nbsp; You were cut off.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;All right.&nbsp; Can you tell me about al Hadba and the formation of that party within Ninewa Province?&nbsp; To what extent were you able to watch it originate at the beginning of your tour, and what is that party's leadership?&nbsp; Who are they?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; Well, the al Hadba, we have watched it kind of as it developed.&nbsp; We expected al Hadba to win.&nbsp; We probably didn't expect them to win to the level that they did there.&nbsp; Al-Nujaifi has been identified as the governor.&nbsp; He has been pretty outspoken in some of his anti Coalition force rhetoric, although I think he is more pragmatic than that.<br />
&nbsp;The scope that al Hadba won the rhetoric associated with the Coalition Force rhetoric associated with anti Kurd could create tensions up there, and there's going to be some challenges that we have to work through.<br />
&nbsp;On the same level, on the same line, though, there may be opportunities in that to reach out to a number of the elements that continue to cause problems there, and he may be able to improve the security situation.&nbsp; So that is one that my counterpart, General Brown, the other deputy commander, is working very hard.<br />
&nbsp;I think we have tracked it pretty closely from the beginning.&nbsp; We are working closely with them now, and we will continue to see how it will work out as the government is actually seated.&nbsp; That will be one of, obviously, the key topics as we get out of the city discussion in June and what the security situation is there and whether the government of Iraq wants us to actually continue operations inside of Mosul or not.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; General Odierno raised that issue in several interviews over the end of last week and this weekend, and I obviously do not want you to comment on something that is a decision that will be taken at force level, but I would like your assessment of the security situation within Mosul proper, likewise in Baquba.&nbsp; Can you tell us what kinds of challenges remain in those cities that keep you and perhaps your superiors concerned?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; Let me start with Baquba, and then I will work to Mosul.<br />
&nbsp;In Baquba, again, the security challenges in Baquba are largely struggles for power, and I think we can continue to work through those.&nbsp; As we are seating the provincial government, it will be one of the key pieces to that, and then getting essential services out to the population, I think to meet some of their expectations, and then finally to continue to work to professionalize the police force.&nbsp; That is largely secure in Baquba right now.<br />
&nbsp;So, overall, if we can get at those three pretty tough hurdles, I am very confident that Baquba will continue to improve.<br />
&nbsp;In Mosul, as you know, we've got a pretty significant operation in conjunction with the Iraqi security forces, both IA and IP, to clear, hold, and then build in Mosul.&nbsp; Again, the difference&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; and I would characterize the difference between Baquba and Mosul&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; is that the population is not passive in Mosul, and their views match the same views as some of the elites there.&nbsp; So, until we are able to get to the level of security there that we can separate terrorists or the elites that are struggling for power in Mosul from the population, I think that will be a much more significant challenge.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Looking at the political elites within Ninewa Province, can you tell me to what extent the new&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; the leadership that is struggling for power is a tribal leadership and to what extent it is a leadership more connected either with the urban centers or overarching political parties?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; I don't know, and I really am not that latched into Mosul that I would like to comment.<br />
&nbsp;I mean, obviously, the tribes continue to be one of the major fabrics or major pieces of the fabric in Iraq, and I think the successful transition of Iraq, the tribes will be an important part of that, but as it relates to the specifics of Ninewa, I am really not that closely aligned to that.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left">&nbsp;[Videotape No. 4 of 6 begins.]<br />
&nbsp;<b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; What about in Diyala?&nbsp; Can you help us understand the tribal situation in Diyala, its connection with the political apparatus, and perhaps whether there is still an overlap of&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;<br />
<b>&nbsp;</b></p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; The tribal&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; I'm sorry.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Between enemy groups and tribal groups.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; Yeah.&nbsp; The tribal situation in Diyala is a little bit different than any of the other tribal&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; or any of the other provinces, mainly because of the number of tribes.&nbsp; There is a large number of tribes inside of Diyala, a 100 plus, and many of the smaller villages will have ten to fifteen different tribes in those villages that don't work necessarily closely together.&nbsp; So that has made it easier for extremist groups to really be able to take over some of those villages.&nbsp; So that is one of the dynamics in Diyala.<br />
&nbsp;I think there are a number of significant, both Sunni and Shia tribes that we are working very hard with on the reconciliation, to try and work the reconciliation not only with the Central Government but through the paramount sheikhs of the tribes there, both as detainees return, as Sons of Iraq are being transitioned, as we continue to try and meet the expectations.&nbsp; We have taken a very active role with the Diyala operations commander in reaching out to all of the paramount sheikhs to help take a lead in that.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Just on a question of fact, who is the Diyala operations commander right now, the center commander?<br />
<b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; Staff Major General Tariq has been&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; came in as the Diyala operations commander about 90 days ago.&nbsp; I'm sorry.&nbsp; About two months ago.<br />
<b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; And likewise, as a point of information, who is the PDOP in Diyala?<br />
<b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; Staff Major General Damouk is the PDOP in Diyala.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Super.&nbsp; Now, looking at these dynamics within Diyala, you mentioned that Sons of Iraq is one of the preeminent tests of the reconciliation process, and I wonder if you can tell me how the Sons of Iraq in Diyala have responded to some of the recent arrests of Sons of Iraq leaders in Baghdad, obviously using Iraqi warrants and Iraqi judges.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; I think the arrests in Baghdad have not been that significant in and of themselves.&nbsp; I talk with a number of the SOI leaders shortly after that.&nbsp; I mean, there is an understanding that there are&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; like anything else, there are some Sons of Iraq leaders out there that are not doing the right thing.&nbsp; So I don't think that they were that surprised that some were arrested.<br />
&nbsp;I do think there continues to be concern amongst the Sons of Iraq leaders that the Central Government of Iraq will not honor the commitment of doing the full transition and transfer, and that is what we continue to work really side by side, every day, with our Iraqi Army partners to facilitate the transition and then ultimately the transfer of those Sons of Iraq.<br />
&nbsp;As you know, we have already transitioned them from control of the Coalition Force to control of the Central Government of Iraq through the Iraqi Army.&nbsp; We are in the process of transitioning the pay from the Coalition Force to the Government of Iraq, and they have picked up the payments for those.&nbsp; And then we are working with them to, one, transition twenty percent into the Iraqi security forces and then find suitable employment for the other 80 percent.<br />
&nbsp;It is a difficult task.&nbsp; It is challenging because, frankly, some people don't want it to happen, and bureaucracy is bureaucracy, but at the leadership level what I have seen is a full commitment both in IFCNR and in the Iraqi Army units to receive and transition the Sons of Iraq.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; One of the other contentious subjects in MND North, of course, is the tension between Arabs and Kurds, and I would like to focus now on this question, both in Kirkuk and in Diyala. The first question I would have for you is to what extent do you actually think that there are ethnic tensions on the ground in Kirkuk city and Diyala Province that are driving some of the dispute.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; Well, one, that's a great question.<br />
&nbsp;When you talk to the local population, whether it's in Khanaqeen or Jalula in Diyala or whether it's in Kirkuk city or Laylan or Dibis in Kirkuk Province, the population have gotten&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; they have lived together for a long time.&nbsp; They get along at that level, and they have continued to get along at the local level. There clearly is a struggle for the disputed areas that has continued to manifest itself between the KRG and the Central Government.&nbsp; It has not yet spilled over into the local population that I have seen.&nbsp; There also are some opportunists, I think, in particular terrorists, that are trying to exploit that scene in an attempt to inflame the population.<br />
So, to answer your question directly, I don't see it at the local level.&nbsp; I am concerned that if there continues to be spectacular attacks by terrorists and there continues to be pressure, external pressure placed on them, then you can start to see it manifest itself more than it has at the local level.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Can you explain, then, what these tensions look like perhaps in terms of the tensions between the Peshmerga forces and the Iraqi Army division, for example?&nbsp; To what extent do you see in your area, a competition between Kurdish and other Iraqi forces for control of territory?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; I think what I have seen in both Diyala and Kirkuk is great professionalism, frankly, on both sides, by the Iraqi Army soldiers, as well as the Peshmerga soldiers.&nbsp; So they are in the same battle space.<br />
&nbsp;As you know, we brought them together to create a combined security arrangement to achieve the provincial elections without incident and very successfully executed that.&nbsp; So I have been very happy with the restraint shown by both the Iraqi Army and the Peshmerga side. They are ultimately soldiers and ultimately, I believe, will do what they are directed to do, but what I have seen is they understand the stakes of the issues at hand, and there has been great efforts by the leadership on almost a daily basis to ensure that we don't incite tension or conflict, that we do everything we can to reduce it.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left">[Video clip No. 5 of 6 begins.]<br />
<b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Is the Iraqi Army or, indeed, are the Peshmerga forces able to use soft power in Diyala and Kirkuk?&nbsp; Are they able to engage in any sort of reconstruction, or are they, in a certain sense, frozen from engaging in these other non combat issues?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; Well, I think that is actually one of the challenges right now because there is such great concern that whatever either side does will be overreacted to by the other side, in some cases, it is almost like being stuck in time.&nbsp; So you will get a number of complaints from those villages that they are not being supported by either side, they are not getting the essential services that they need, they are not getting the influx of money that they need.&nbsp; That is, I believe, one of the reasons.&nbsp; Obviously, there are many others, but one of the reasons that we need to continue to work to resolve this.<br />
&nbsp;We are taking a larger role from a Coalition Force standpoint on assisting with some of the essential services along the disputed areas and trying to get those projects in, particularly some of the outlying&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; not the major cities but the outlying areas.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Can you simply explain why the coalition is taking a more active role?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; I think we are committed to do everything that we can do try and reduce the tension in those areas, in the effort to allow the political process to work.&nbsp; So that is the primary focus that I have gotten, whether it has been in resources, whether it's time, energy, or money, to ensure that we give it very opportunity for the political apparatus to work to a solution.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; And can you describe a little bit more what that political apparatus might be?&nbsp; For example, do you see the resolution of these issues occurring at the provincial level, the regional level, or at the national level within Iraq?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; I think my personal opinion - ultimately it is going to be a national level decision.&nbsp; I mean, it is clearly nested in Article 23 for the power sharing at the provincial level within Kirkuk, but it is really the larger Article 140 discussion that addresses the disputed areas as part of the constitution. So I think it will ultimately be resolved at the national level.&nbsp; I think maintaining the personal relationships, maintaining the level of calm, reducing tensions, it occurs at the local and provincial level, but the ultimate solution will be at the national level.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Of course, Kirkuk did not actually hold provincial elections in January.&nbsp; Are those elections now scheduled, and are there processes for undertaking those elections underway?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; They are not.&nbsp; That continues to be a moving timeline.<br />
&nbsp;I think they look to do those elections in the summer, but they have not accomplished the preparation, I don't believe, yet to do those elections on schedule.&nbsp; So I think they appear to be continuing to slip to the right.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Is that a major subject for concern for either the officials within the KRG or for the people of Kirkuk?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; I'm sorry, Kim.&nbsp; I couldn't understand the first part of your question.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Is the slipping of the elections to the right, a major cause for concern, either for the KRG leadership or for the people of Kirkuk?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; I can't speak to the KRG leadership. I think there is some concern at the local level in Kirkuk just because they have not had the election, the provincial powers, laws that became a part of the other provinces based on the elections have not been effected yet inside of Kirkuk.&nbsp; So I think there is a desire by the leadership in Kirkuk to hold the elections as rapidly as possible, at least by some aspects of leadership there.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; And what is it about the new provincial powers that benefits provincial communities?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; Well, the Provincial Powers Law&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; and I am obviously not an expert in it, but the provincial powers law does provide more power down to the provincial leadership than existed prior to the elections as it relates to budgeting, as it relates to control of the local police.&nbsp; So it delineates those responsibilities and authorities at the provincial level and those in the Central Government and provides more authorities to the provincial level than existed prior to the elections.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Can you tell us about the role that the United Nations played within the disputed territories and within Kirkuk?&nbsp; What specifically is the UN trying to do, and how does that interact with your own operations on the ground?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; Well, as you know, the United Nations have been doing a study on the disputed areas for a period of time.&nbsp; It is, in my understanding, the most extensive study that has been done on the disputed areas, and there is an expectation that that study will be released in the near future, although I don't know the exact date.<br />
&nbsp;So I don't know that&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; my understanding is that it will not be binding, but it will provide more detail, I think, and more background than has been done before.&nbsp; So I think from our standpoint, the effort that they put into it, the research that they have done will help provide a foundation that the political parties can use to reach a resolution of an issue.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Now, within the Kurdish political parties, we have seen some churn, shall we say, in the politics between the KDP and the PUK over the past several months?&nbsp; What kinds of insight can you provide us into what the differences are between the two Kurdish parties and how they are manifested in either their goals or their actions in national and provincial politics?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON:</b>&nbsp; That is difficult for me because the area that I deal with is largely the PUK, and largely the KDP tends to work in the area that General Brown is at. There has been some turmoil there, that we have seen some of that manifest itself in the individuals that we deal with.&nbsp;I know there is an effort to consolidate many of the separate functions under one function, and I believe they are moving towards that.<br />
&nbsp;So I don't really have enough depth of knowledge to compare and contrast the KDP and the PUK.&nbsp; I would say it is important to understand that the KRG is not monolithic, and there are competing factions within it, and that complicates, in some cases, an already complicated situation.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Would you feel comfortable talking about what you see of the PUK?&nbsp; That is to say, what that party's goals and objectives are and how its leadership has been changing or interacting with the situation on the ground?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; You know, I don't&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; You don't have to.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; Yeah.&nbsp; I would if I felt like I could put any insight on it, but I really deal with it at the security level, and I understand how it impacts it, but I'd prefer not to get into the inner workings of the PUK.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left">[Video clip No. 6 of 6 begins.]<br />
<b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; That is absolutely fine.<br />
&nbsp;Why don't we zoom out just a little bit, and let me ask you whether you found that the provincial council elections in Ninewa changed the focus of the national leadership on Kurdish Arab tensions, and did it actually, in a certain sense, shift a center of gravity from Mosul to Kirkuk?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; I don't know.&nbsp; That's an interesting question.<br />
&nbsp;I think I still consider the decisive point or the center of gravity of that discussion as being Kirkuk, but there are at least indicators on a number of sides that there may be more concern on Mosul now.&nbsp; So I have always really considered Kirkuk to be the center or gravity, but it seems like there is, frankly, more concern on Mosul, partly because of the provincial elections there.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Can you tell us more about the former Baath party elements throughout MND North?&nbsp; You mentioned at the beginning of the interview that MND North had traditionally been the heart of the old Baath party.&nbsp; To what extent do you see foreign support for old Baath party members?&nbsp; To what extent do you see former Baath institutions still in place, and to what extent do you see even some of the new political parties reaching out to their former Baath roots?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; Well, it is very difficult to separate all those because you've got so many what I'll call &quot;disenfranchised&quot; that were in the Baath party because that was the predominant party and that's where they're at, and they have no opportunity to reconcile as they go through.<br />
&nbsp;I think if they can figure out how to separate those that are prepared to move on to a new way of business and then reconcile them back in the government, there is great expertise, experience that is sitting out there, I think, ready to do that, but it is so intertwined, as you say, with other individuals that continue to believe that the right solution is to go back to the Baath party, best exhibited by Izzat al Douri brand, that I think it is difficult for all of us.&nbsp; It is difficult for us as Coalition Forces to separate that, and to a degree, it is difficult for the Central Government to separate that.<br />
&nbsp;So I believe it will continue to be a challenge to work through, but it is absolutely needed to work through and be able to separate the different bins of former Baathists that are out there, those that are terrorists that we still need to detain, those that&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; from those that want to be a part of really working and living in the new Iraq.<br />
&nbsp;I know that didn't answer your question directly, but it is one of the more nuanced areas that we are continuing to try and sort ourselves through.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Over the past few months, obviously, we have begun to structure our coalition operations under the framework of the security agreement that the United States and Iraq have signed, and I wonder whether you feel that the implementation of that security agreement has constrained what you're able to do in MND North, and secondly, how it is&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; how well the implementation is going, finally perhaps, how do you mitigate any constraints that that agreement places on you?<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON:</b>&nbsp; That's a great question.<br />
&nbsp;First, I would just say this.&nbsp; The security arrangement, I think, was absolutely a step in the right direction and really continues to enhance the sovereignty of Iraq and moves us towards a transition much quicker.<br />
&nbsp;We are doing the same mission that we were doing before it was signed.&nbsp; We are doing it differently, and the way that we're doing it now is really in complete coordination with our Iraqi partners.<br />
&nbsp;It has forced us to partner much closer.&nbsp; It has forced us to combine ops and intel functions, so that they understand what we are doing and we understand what they are doing, and it has forced us to understand our objectives much clearer.<br />
&nbsp;So, from my standpoint, you have to work harder than we had to before, but it is an improved product, and it really has allowed the Iraqi Army, I believe, and the Iraqi Security Force to move to the next level.<br />
&nbsp;So, from that standpoint, I am very optimistic.&nbsp; I haven't seen it to this point really constrain us from doing any mission that we were doing before, and the way that we have really continued that is by our closer and closer partnership with the Iraqis.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; We are running out of time, and so I have two final questions for you.&nbsp; First, if you could just let us know for our own frame of reference, what you see as the main effort within MND North and what you see as the supporting effort, and then secondly, I would ask you whether you have any comments that you would like to make at the end of this interview regarding MND North.<br />
<br />
<b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; Oh, I'm sorry.<br />
&nbsp;I think geographically, our main effort continues to be Ninewa and then followed closely by Diyala.&nbsp; Our most dangerous course of action continues to be Arab Kurd tensions. Functionally, our main effort continues to be building the Iraqi Security Forces' capability, and this is more about capability than capacity because I think that is the thing that will continue to bridge the gap and make them successful as we conduct the responsible drawdown.<br />
&nbsp;I would just like to make a couple of comments at the end.&nbsp; I think, as you know, the conditions change rapidly here.&nbsp; This is, without a doubt, the most complex environment that I've operated in, and I've operated in a number of wars, but because of where we're at and the partnership with the security agreement, it really means that you're talking about multiple enemies and multiple friends and the population, as the terrain.&nbsp; So it is an extremely complex operating environment, and frankly, we're doing it with diminishing influence because there is an end state as we go through.<br />
&nbsp;Where before we were at the center of the page, we are no longer at the center of the page, either for the problem or the solution, and we are rapidly moving off the page.&nbsp; That requires us to partner closer than we ever have in the past, and it requires us to ask the deeper questions than we have in the past, on both sides.<br />
&nbsp;And then, finally, I think the timeline has gotten us to a stage of those things that we must do because we know the clock is ticking, and to bridge the gap and to allow the successful transition that we've paid for on all sides with a lot of blood, sweat, and tears, there are things that we still need to get accomplished.<br />
&nbsp;Having said all that, I continue to be humbled to work around the patriots, both American and Iraqi, that are sacrificing each and every day, and I have the utmost respect for them and their families that support their efforts.<br />
&nbsp;That's really all I wanted to say, and I do appreciate the opportunity to talk with you tonight.<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; General Nixon, thank you so much for talking with me and with the Institute for the Study of War today, and thank you also to all of the soldiers of the 25th Infantry Division for all of the hard work that you are engaged in, in these truly complex circumstances.&nbsp; We wish all of you the very best, and I believe the proper way to close this interview, then, would be for me to give you a big tropic lightning.<br />
&nbsp;[Laughter.]<br />
&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: left"><b>NIXON</b>:&nbsp; Well, tropic lightning to you too.<br />
<b>KAGAN</b>:&nbsp; Thank you very much.<br />
&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; <br />
&nbsp;</p>

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ISW Briefing: Iraq Report 12

Screen Capture of ISW Briefing webcast on Iraq Report 12: The Fragmentation of the Sadrist Movement

 

This briefing, by ISW Research Manager Marisa Cochrane, is on Iraq Report 12: The Fragmentation of the Sadrist Movement.  Contained in this interesting webcast is new evidence that links Iranian-backed Special Groups with the Asaib Ahl al-Haq (AAH) terrorist group, led by formerly close associates of Muqtada al-Sadr. The webcast also provides a highlight of the report as well as audience Q & A.  The briefing is moderated by ISW President Kimberly Kagan.

 

View:

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Part 5

Part 6




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ISW Webcast with Col Flynn and Maj Brooke




ISW President Kim Kagan talks with Colonel Charles A. Flynn and Major Matthew W. Brooke of the 1BCT, 82nd Airborne about their recent experiences in Iraq.  Colonel Flynn and his brigade, which returned from Iraq in August, were stationed at Tallil Air Base, roughly 15 miles southwest of Nasiriyah.  They were initially responsible for theater security operations in southern, central and western Iraq securing the ground lines of communications (an essential component for the safe passage of supply convoys coming from Kuwait along Main Supply Route Tampa).  These lines of communications had been contested by Special Groups, Coalition Forces, and Iraqi Security Forces.   Special Groups sought to hinder Coalition and Iraqi movement by planting EFPs and IEDs; while U.S. convoys sought to secure the towns and highways from these extremist groups.


During the interview, Colonel Flynn and Major Brooke present their assessment of the southern provinces - the security that they and their Iraqi partners achieved, as well as the long-term political, economic, religious, and military challenges that remain.

Webcast Segments:

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Part 5

Part 6

Part 7

Part 8

Part 9

Part 10

 

Additional Off-site Authors: 
Transcript: 

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<p align="center" class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: center;"><b style=""><span style="font-size: 16pt; font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;">ISW Webcast Transcript</span></b><!--[if supportFields]><b
style='mso-bidi-font-weight:normal'><span style='font-size:16.0pt;font-family:
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mso-bidi-font-family:Courier'><span style='mso-element:field-begin'></span>PRIVATE
</span></b><![endif]--><!--[if supportFields]><b style='mso-bidi-font-weight:
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style='mso-element:field-end'></span></span></b><![endif]--><b style=""><span style="font-size: 16pt; font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><o:p></o:p></span></b></p>
<p align="center" class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: center;"><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p></span></b></p>
<p align="center" class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: center;"><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;">COL CHARLES FLYNN</span></b><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"> and <b>MAJ MATTHEW BROOKE, 1BCT/82<sup>nd</sup> Airborne Division</b><o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p align="center" class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;">Interview Conducted By<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p align="center" class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: center;"><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;">DR. KIM KAGAN</span></b><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;">, Institute for the Study of War<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><o:p>&nbsp;</o:p><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Well, welcome today to the Institute for the Study of War.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I am Kim Kagan, the President of the Institute, and I have with me today Colonel Charlie Flynn and Major Matt Brooke from the 82nd Airborne Division.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Thanks so much for joining us.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Thanks for having us.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I am eager to talk with you about your experiences during the surge and the experiences of your brigade, and I would really love if you would begin by explaining what your missing was at the beginning of the surge and what kind of forces you had available.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Okay.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Well, as I mentioned earlier, you know, as the brigade was getting ready to deploy to Iraq, we initially were being directed that we were going to be up in MND‑North, but as the surge hit, the first battalion of mine deployed with 2nd Brigade which was then a DRB in the 82nd, leaving the brigade with minus an infantry battalion.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>DRB stands for?<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>The Division Ready Brigade.<span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>Right.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Sorry.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Thanks.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>And so as the forces or as, you know, the brigade continued is modular transformation ‑‑ mind you, we had just come back from Afghanistan ‑‑ we then were given an idea that we would end up being the Sec.4 brigade at the tail end of the surge because we were going to deploy in June anyways, so ‑‑ but we were minus a brigade.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>So, anyways, we ended up deploying in June as the SEC‑4 brigade, and really at the same period of time as the surge forces went out, though not formally designated as one of the five surge brigades, we really did come in at the same time, and we replaced a National Guard brigade, the 34th Brigade out of the Minnesota National Guard.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And our mission initially upon arrival in Iraq was to be the Security Forces Brigade, which effectively secured all the logistics convoys going from Southern Iraq all the way up into Northern Iraq, and then we had another battalion task force out west which basically did the convoy security between al‑Asad and the Jordanian border and back.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>So that was our initial mission going over there.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We replaced a 5,500‑man brigade with a 2,500‑man BCT.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We did pick up some enablers, and we did pick up a battalion from 2nd Brigade 3rd ID, which was the ‑‑ really the fifth of the five Designated Surge Brigades, and so when I arrived over there, I had a nine‑battalion brigade task force.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We were spread out in every MND AO, and we moved effectively on all the MSRs and ASRs, securing all the conveys that were delivering all the commodities and supplies to keep the tempo and the pace of operations sustained in Iraq.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Where were you headquartered?<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>The headquarters was in COB Adder, a Tallil airfield in the south, just west of the City of Nasiriyah.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>What is actually involved in securing a convoy, and why would we need a BCT, a Brigade Combat Team, to do that ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Yeah.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>‑‑ during the surge operations?<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Well, I think that, you know, those materials and commodities that were being delivered, particularly at the height of the surge, ammunition, fuel, water, food, parts, just all of the materials to sustain the tempo that General Petraeus and at the time General Odierno wanted the ‑‑ you know, the brigades in Iraq to maintain, and then, you know, of course, his, you know, direction to get into COBs and JSSs only extended the lines of communication and the supply lines because now we had to deliver to the hubs, but then they had to move all those things out to these various locations to keep the force supplied and outfitted and kitted.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And of course, you know, at the time that we're coming, it's the summer.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Violence is very high because now we had five more brigades in Iraq.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So things were breaking.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So, you know, that's the importance of really being able to move those things and move them when we needed to move them without being interrupted or interdicted by the enemy.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Were there enemy groups trying to interrupt and interdict those supply convoys?<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Oh, yes.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Who?<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Who were they?<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Yeah.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I think, you know, in the beginning, it was ‑‑ it was pretty evident to us that ‑‑ that, you know, special groups, JAM at the time ‑‑ we really didn't know exactly what we were confronted with, but you know, the EFPs that were an absolute killer were happening along MSR Tampa, really from where ‑‑ south of us, actually between where we were in Nasiriyah and Basra and then up towards ‑‑ closer towards Diwaniyah, Diwaniyah into Hillah, and then, of course, as we transited in through Baghdad and northern Baghdad, as we were going up to Balad, the threat out west was ‑‑ was greatly reduced at the time.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>There was really very little going on.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>But you know, the movement from north to south and south to north on MSR Tampa and the various other ASRs that you have to skirt through was difficult and really had to do with the JAM elements that were out there conducting this.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I was reflecting back when we first initially had to do IPB that was about two‑hours long when we briefed it, because we had to brief on every element that was ‑‑ enemy element that was within Iraq, and so to answer your question on who might be attacking those, in the south, what we would call pretty much from Kuwait up to COB Adder, you would actually have folks that would want to try to get the supplies.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>That would be the folks, the tribal, the Marsh folks, would actually try to interdict the movement, so that we would have to leave a vehicle, and then they would pilfer from that to be able to re‑sell.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>But then that's also where once you past COB Adder, you started to see around COB adder and then north up to CSC Scania and into Baghdad ‑‑ you started to see the EFP threat because that was the Shi'a ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Right.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>‑‑ folks that was in that area, but as soon as you got past al‑Hillah, then you had to work with al‑Qaeda on one side of the road and Shi'a on the other side of the road that are also battling.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And al‑Qaeda typically from our perspective would take target of opportunity, not necessarily wanting to get the goods or anything, but because we were moving on the routes, they would actually try to, you know, either put something along the road or try to interdict us as we go, just to cause us some friction, and that is the same going around in through Baghdad as well.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>You are on the roads.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>You are out there.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>That is where the enemy can go.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And one of the things that Colonel Flynn will hit<span style="">&nbsp; </span>on is that relationship building was a key thing across the board, more importantly with coalition partners, our own U.S., to know, &quot;Hey, 182 is rolling through your battle space.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We might need a little help here because, you know, your back is to the road looking west.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Your back is to the road looking east, and we are going right up in between you.&quot;<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So that was very important, and that was the sharing piece to identify what specific groups were there, who was targeting us at the time, and then be able to share with the battle space owners of those areas and say, &quot;Hey, this is what we're seeing.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Can you get us a little artillery here, maybe a little coverage from Eye in the Sky, et cetera, to be able to help us out?&quot;<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Right.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So it was very complex coming in.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>It got a little more simple, even though it is still complex, later on because as we expanded out from the 500 meters from the road and really focused on our operation environment that we could ‑‑ or the brigade commander could directly affect and influence in the south there.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>What do you mean by that?<span style="">&nbsp; </span>What caused you essentially to spread from the road?<span style="">&nbsp; </span>What were you trying to accomplish in creating a wider security zone than simply to transit out?<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Right.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Well, you know, vice just protecting the physical movement of the vehicles, I guess from my perspective, it was ‑‑ initially, I think we started by saying we needed, you know, to be able to secure a thousand meters off the sides of the road because we were really just trying to prevent complex attacks from occurring, not just an IED, but an IED followed by<span style="">&nbsp; </span>mortars, followed by small arms fire, followed by an assault force, because there were those events that did go on, and I was ‑‑ this wasn't long after the kids from the 10th Mountain were grabbed as hostages.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>I was afraid, you know, we had six vehicles out there.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They are escorting 40 trucks, and you know, having eight convoys back to back to back throughout.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I was concerned that one of the elements would be isolated, and I'm just talking about a single vehicle, and then now we've got a hostage situation in the middle of the night when one of these complex attacks happens along Tampa.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>So we immediately started ‑‑ really I guess because of the nature of who we are and what we do, we just framed it as a movement to contact every night and day.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So it was okay, we're going to protect the vehicles going up the road, but then we are going to get off a thousand meters and be able to engage or deny, disrupt and/or defeat any forces that were going to be trying to hinder our movement, and by doing that, it forced us to ‑‑ you know, we extended our patrolling off of Tampa.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We put our cops out along Tampa.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>When we first got there, we had five.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We shrunk down to three because we found them to be in better positions, and when out there, it was really a combined arms fight that had human collection teams, and they had ‑‑ you know, they were doing CMO operations.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They were engaged in the travel sheets.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They were talking with the police.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>The Iraqi Highway Police at the time when we arrived was ‑‑ was really nonexistent.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I mean they were almost the ‑‑ you know, they were the cops that showed up at the police station and said, &quot;Hey, you go to the highway today,&quot; you know, because they were left out there effectively alone and with no vehicles, no uniforms, barely any ammunition.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>Well, we really started talking to those guys and getting them to ‑‑ well, I guess collectively, we were saying, &quot;Hey, look, these guys need some help, and if you can help them, Iraqi Police, then they can help you.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They can help commerce move from point to point.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They can help the population just feel better about getting on Tampa and driving between Basra and Baghdad and doing it in, you know, three hours vice having to take six hours to go up the bumpy roads on the side and going through every town.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>So, you know, it was not just what we needed to do to move our supplies and protect our forces.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>It was also, you know, on concert with the Iraqi Police and Highway Police in this particular case to open up those roads, so that the population can move on it as well, and that's ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>I think that, coupled with our ‑‑ you know, the relationships that we have with each of the BCTs as we moved around through Iraq were critical to the success of this.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I mean I think the coordination of intelligence sharing, the coordination of using attack aviation, using artillery, using mortars, knowing where their friendly forces were that may have been in an OP or checkpoint or laying in an ambush, and being able to talk to those forces as we were moving up through all these various brigade areas.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>You have got division boundaries, brigade boundaries, battalion boundaries.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So our guys in each of these convoys were talking to them, and they would do things that would disrupt the enemy and basically pull that threat off of the main roads where we were moving all these convoys.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Could you give me an example of something that happened in a brigade?<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Yeah.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Before each one of these convoys would take off, the convoy commander would basically get a briefing on where they thought the ‑‑ we called them &quot;elevated threat zones&quot; at the time.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>EFPs or complex attacks would go on.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>Some of those would be outside of our area, which I contend to be south, but as it got up closer to Baghdad ‑‑ for example, at the time, it was 425 I think was just south of Baghdad.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>It was pretty early on.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We coordinated for them to fire illum rounds over Tampa as the convoy was coming up.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>In one instance, there were illum rounds fired.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>The convoy stopped really at the time to do a little bit of arrest halt, but when the illum rounds were fired, there was some attack aviation that was sent in after they picked up a hot spot.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>The convoy had to get moving again.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They picked up and started moving.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They were engaged, and the convoy then stopped, reengaged the enemy, but then called in the attack aviation that was actually working for 425 at the time, but because of the coordination that was done, now we had attack aviation over the top of this enemy cell that was out putting in an IED, EFP around the complex of attack, and they were killed.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>And there was a number of events that occurred like that.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And I think that by doing that and bringing in really a combined‑arms fight on those elements along the MSR, that began to take away their initiative because now they were being ‑‑ now they were being disrupted, destroyed, and defeated by direct fire, by indirect fire, by attack aviation, and we had a better idea of where they were going to do these ambushes on us because we were doing a really good job of collecting intelligence about their patterns that they have as well because they do ‑‑ they did have patterns as well, so ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>When you were engaging a long MSR Tampa, you mentioned that you were engaging tribal sheiks.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Why, and for what purpose?<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Yeah.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Well, in the provinces that we were operating in, you really had these different groups that were connected to the city capitals, like Diwaniyah, Samara or Samawah, Nasiriyah, and in these three provinces, the tribal sheiks, I think were an important part to having access to what do the people really need in these provinces.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>It was a rural area.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>There wasn't a lot of money that was being pumped into some of the needs of the people, bridges, electricity, jobs, and so early on, I think we engaged them in order to help with employment and with trying to find out from them what they felt the problem was in their areas.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>Matt, if you want to ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Well, it is really interesting because you have to think about the tribal folks are the ones that have always maintained their presence there.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>A lot of the people that we worked with, the governors and the leaders of the provinces, actually lived in Iran, you know, Governor Ogeli for 21 years.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So these are the folks that had to put up with dictatorship for so many years and been beaten down, and they have never been really invited to the table since we have come in that we had saw in the south.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>Our predecessors did work with them a little bit on small projects, but it would be one tribal sheik on one little water project versus bringing them in, as Colonel Flynn said, and having their voice be heard, so that when the provincial council meets, they can actually listen to the people to say this is what we need to have done, whether it be as simple as a fertilization product, a date plant, whatever it may be, but they actually get a voice in it.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And that was very important because as we will see later, as our tour went on, there was actually formation of three tribal battalions to assist the Iraqi Security Forces, and that was some of the issues that we will talk about once we get to the January time frame, but they were very important because they actually provided a layer of security not only for their tribe, but also for the social population that they were around because they are not all living out as Bedouins.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Some are in the cities as well, so they can help protect themselves.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>But it's interesting because this whole thread that we will talk about today, you have to uncover a lot of things, and what I mean by that is it's almost layers, and the way you do that is you have to be present.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We will tal about this as far as, you know, timelines and all that, that other people decide way above us, but it is very important to have those layers uncovered to know where you need to go and have specific gates that have to be passed through.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>My example I wanted to give earlier when we were talking about the enemy was it is like taking the LAPD and dropping them in New York with no databases, no background, and say go.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>That is what we are still facing because we ‑‑ it is an economy of force mission was the south.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We needed to move stuff through there, but you know, the Iraqis got it.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We are going to let them do it, but the embers were always there, and they were always festering.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We will say that a little bit later as well, but who was stoking those fires just to the east, as we will talk about those guys east of Iraq.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>So it is very important to know that because until we started to pull back the layers by getting with the tribal guys, getting with the IHPs, getting with the IPs, and know who is good, better, ugly in them because you are going to have that, that is going on, and getting down on the ground to understand why, you know, besides the fact, &quot;I am unemployed.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I am going to meet at the bus stop.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Somebody is going to come by and give me $50 to put this on the side of the road.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I don't know why, but I am going to do it because I want to feed my family,&quot; to get in that decision‑making process.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>So that is why it is very important, you know.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>The expand from the road really was to expand our tentacles in to get a better understanding of our operational environment.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Then that way, he, Colonel Flynn, then could put focus and direction in our overall plan and strategy to be able to help, you know, them move forward for that piece.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Which tribes in particular were tribes that you identified as those unique to work with in the early stages, in the pre‑January stages, and how did you identify those?<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I will be generic in answering this first.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>All those that know and wanted to gives names of.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>In other words, the ones that were coming forward all the time, we pacified them to continue talking, but we went after the ones that no one had even brought up.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>If you would say the name, you got me cold on.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I am giving you one of those names, but it would be a name that no one would talk about in the circles of when you are talking about the tribes because it doesn't have 20,000 members in it.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>So, really, later on as well ‑‑ I will stop saying later on, we'll get to it, but really even in Amara is we treated all 24 of the tribal sheiks that came in equally.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Yeah.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>That was very important to do that because, you know, it's little kids.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>If this guy gets it, then this guy wants to have it.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So you have to be kind of patient with that, but ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I think the Combat Outpost, you know, between Scania and the three that we had effectively down to Nasiriyah, their engagement at really the lowest level to help bring ‑‑ you know, to help them have a voice in the needs, and we really kind of weaved that I think between the tribal sheiks back to the PRT leaders because one of the unique things that we had was we had three provincial reconstruction teams right at Nasiriyah with us.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>And Muthanna and Dhi Qar and Maysan were right there.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So we were able to leverage, you know, some of the cross‑talk between what the PRT leader was getting, what a rep maybe from USAID was getting, to what our guys at the Combat Outposts were getting and bring all of that back and then say, &quot;Okay.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Well, you know, really this area needs a little more of this.&quot;<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>Jobs.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I mean I remember one meeting we went to in Muthanna.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We come in with these big ideas.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We wanted to build a powerplant.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Powerplant.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>[Laughter.]<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>You know, do this and do that, and the only thing they wanted, they wanted a bridge to get across this river, so that the kids could go to school ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Kids could go to school.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>‑‑ on the other side of the bridge, and they had been trying to build this footbridge for, you know, whatever, five, six years, and they kept saying no one is doing anything about it, and so ‑‑ but you know, it took this, going from our grand ideas to just a simple footbridge.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And now what we did was we connected tribes.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We connected families.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We connected the community, and you know, all of a sudden, you get a lot of goodwill out of something like that because that bridge went up in ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>No time at all.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>‑‑ I don't know ‑‑ about three ‑‑ about three months, it was done.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Yep.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>And now we had people going to markets.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They could move their small carts and donkeys and even their small, little, you know, Hilux trucks that go.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I mean it was a simple fix, but it made great strides.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>One other thing I'll say about the tribes in the south particularly, as you know, we were co‑located with a Romanian battalion, the Australian battalion.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We were really operating in the U.K.'s battle space down there.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I mean Muthanna and Dhi Qar and Maysan province was part of the MND‑Southeast.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>The Australians and the Romanians had good insights on the tribal sheiks, you know.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They had been down there continually for three, four years.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They would hand off the names of the tribal sheiks and those tribes that had been, I guess, engaged.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>I think what Matt touched on before was an important point.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We began to touch other tribes that had not been addressed by the Australians and the Romanians and the Brits.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So now we were expanding that outreach, if you will, to tribes that had been marginalized or really not had ‑‑ paid no attention to.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And I think in doing that, it gave them a voice that they previously did not have, and so by empowering them a little bit and making them part of the community, if you will, now we really had U.S. forces touching into these tribes, Australian forces touching into them, Romanian forces, and I think that helped those tribal sheiks have a voice, you know, that previously was not being heard.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And again, I think the power of the location that we had, where we were co‑located with three PRTs, the Gulf Region South Corps of Engineers, of course, the 1st and 82nd, the Australians, the Romanians, Special Forces, was really a pretty powerful joint and coalition partnership of capabilities that could then really expand the influence of what we needed to do.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>I used to use that a lot with all of the leaders that were working there because I really do think it was ‑ you know, General Petraeus came down early on and said, &quot;Well you got to be larger than you are,&quot; and ‑‑ because we were really, you know, a brigade minus, but we had all these forces all over Iraq.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>But I think he knew sort of instinctively that, you know, we did need to be larger than we were in the south in order to find out more about what was going on, and that is exactly what we ‑‑ really what we did.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>I mean that comment he made to me, it really resonated with me because it was like, well, we extend over four provinces.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We are into the fifth province up in Babil, and there is no other U.S. brigade down here.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I am not working for Division Headquarters.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I really do have to be larger than I am, and I am not going to get a lot of resources to help me do it.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So I have got to leverage everything I have at COB Adder to do that, and all of those elements that I spoke of before allowed us to have that reach.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So, as you expanded into this large area, did you start to get a sense that it was a problem that there were not other U.S. forces in the area?<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Were there a number of enemy groups functioning in the area that really needed to be addressed that were not being addressed?<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Well, I think as we expanded, it was, as I mentioned, the layers.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>It was interesting because as you get a better situational feel, you almost have to take it as an example of being on the street ‑‑ is the individuals that are on the street are going to know the current talk‑about, if you will.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>So, in regards to friendly, they are going to say, &quot;Man, I have been seeing those 82nd Airborne guys everywhere,&quot; even though we may have been only a couple places, but that is how it gets passed.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>But it's the same thing can be held true.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They are going to know the neighbor or the folks that are hanging out in the house that are doing bad things.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So, in lieu of the fact that there is U.S., a lot of the comments we have would be like &quot;I've never seen a coalition forces soldier in my village before until you came,&quot; &quot;I had never seen a U.S. person in here until you guys had come as well,&quot; because you got to remember, you know, the Sec.4 mission up until that point was COB Adder‑specific and run, run up and down the roads, and we left it to our coalition partners, and that's a lot of space.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>As they became smaller, they being our coalition partners became smaller, they had inability to cover that vast amount of around.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And what we would tend to do is we would try to get outside, if you will, the suburban areas, vice the center of the city, because one of the things that we will discuss is Provincial Iraqi Control, and PIC is very important because they will say, &quot;Oh, you are in PIC environment.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>You couldn't do much.&quot;<span style="">&nbsp; </span>No, not true.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>You can still do everything you need to do, but you are working with that government.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Right.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>You are letting them know.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>It would be like if I want to do ‑‑ going back to my LA and New York cop vignette is if I was just going to have them come in and assist me, you are going to let the governor know.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>You know, you are not going to swing by and just kind of go in it.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Well, if you do, you get in trouble, but you are going to let them know that, and that is the same thing that Colonel Flynn would do, but that helped cross‑talk not only one way to say, hey, we are not only going to do this engagement, but you know, we're going to go and probably take a look at this guy and probably remove him.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>What if you guys ‑‑ you guys ‑‑ no what if you do, not if ‑‑ you will.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>You guys take the lead, which they would, and then we will support you in what we call a scalable support package to support them to go in that area, and that is really that relationship and that partnership building that was so critical.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And then all of a sudden ‑‑ we were talking about this today ‑‑ they would always touch you, but that is important because now they are going to touch you and they are going to share with you, and they are going to tell you the good things they are working on and then the struggles they are having to move forward.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I don't want to underestimate the ability for us to do that, though.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We allow ‑‑ we gave ourselves time and space by taking the MSR Tampa corridor back.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>In other words, when we didn't have to be in a fight every night, like we were when we first got there, because it literally was every night, five or six, you know, attacks each night, when we didn't have to do that anymore ‑‑ of course, we were ready for it, but when we were able to expand out and expand our influence by using the Combat Outpost and by leveraging the PRTs, by synchronizing and coordinating with the Army Corps of Engineers projects that they were working, by collaborating the intelligence between the Australians, the Romanians, the U.S. Special Forces, by doing all of that, it really allowed us to uncover some things that really had not been previously addressed.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>To your point about having other U.S. forces down there, I didn't really see that as a problem.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I mean I honestly ‑‑ you know, though not on a formal organization chart, because the Australian battalion was really working for the British brigade down in Basra, but quite frankly, it was hard for them to work for the British brigade in Basra because the British brigade in Basra was pretty busy with just Basra.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>So, you know, I just kind of ‑‑ I sort of used that location and said, hey, you know, to both the Australian battalion commanders that were there and the Romanian battalion commanders that were there, &quot;Use me as your brigade commander.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I can give you resources, and you can give us resources,&quot; and by sharing that information, I think that we really kind of helped one another out.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>So I didn't think there was ‑‑ I never felt like we needed more U.S. forces down there.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I just felt like what we had, we needed to spread out and do more, and by doing more, I think, you know, it addressed some things that previously had not been really addressed.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So what happened in January?<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Do you want to start and then I'll come in?<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Sure.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Well, it is important to note, to build up to January, that the Australians, that was their battle space, you know, An Nasiriyah, the surrounding area, Suq Ash Shuyukh, et cetera.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>It is important to know that, but we would assist in the intelligence piece or other assets that we could coordinate for.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>As Colonel Flynn mentioned, you know, as we came with EFPs being very important, but then also complex attacks, and we really had not seen them at a certain level.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>Important to thread into this to get to January is what those stoker of the embers was doing at this present time was they were ‑‑ the Iranians were actually assisting the Shi'a insurgency inside of Iraq around our area, meaning they would have a specialized mortar expert.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They would have guys that could do rockets, guys that could do EFP stuff.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So they were really like next to them as we moved through the late summer, early fall.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Okay.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>There was a couple key assassinations that occurred in August.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>The governor of Qadisiyyah, which is above us, and then Muthanna as well were assassinated, which had key linkage to Iran as well.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>That is very important because from that time forward, August was the same month that Muqtada al‑Sadr put his edict out to basically stand down what we call &quot;JAM,&quot; okay, because later on the special group piece comes into play, but ‑‑ so, as this is moving forward, what we are seeing is a pulling of folks to the east, to the other country in Iran there, to go over there and receive training, and this was shared with us by the ISF as well that were tracking on some of these key entities from their population centers that were going over to receive what I would call like, you know, ILE for a major, the higher level where you are going to help plan, coordinate, orchestrate, not necessarily execute.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>So those common street thugs that we have been giving a little bit of that up from the past on were actually now growing in fame, if you will.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They were the ones being recruited over to help do this.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>So, in January time frame, speaking of which, I want to also bring in the tribal battalions because this is very important to this incident that took place on 18 January 2007 ‑‑ 2008.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>'8, yeah.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Sorry.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>A year behind.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>Is Abu Bakar was actually a critical node leader inside of An Nasiriyah for the police force.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>He was like the SWAT commander, if you will, for easy terms, and he was working with the governor.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>He was, but he was ‑‑ he was laying down the law, and he was being fair and impartial, honestly, you know, because we talk about sectarian violence, et cetera, but he would go after those.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>I mean it was 98‑percent Shi'a.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>so it is not really a lot of Sunnis there.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>There is not too many there.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>But what occurred was the ‑‑ the scary part, what occurred was the planning and the coordination and the movement of weapons and systems that were used on that day because what they did was they attacked the An Nasiriyah tribal battalion headquarters because they knew exactly what impact what would give.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>The impact or the reaction would be Abu Bakar and several others would rush to assist them because that is part of the Dubar [ph] tribe.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>That is the big tribe that he was associated with or that he is a member of.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>Upon arriving, it was an L‑shaped ambush that actually decapitated literally four or five critical ISF leaders, and it is important to note that because as we saw an ebb and flow of the insurgency in the south, when they couldn't be successful against coalition forces, they would turn more towards Shi'a and Shi'a violence, and also they would look more towards assassinations, whether it would be the August piece we talked about or whether it would be these critical cases.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>Removing a man like Abu Bakar, you know, we were worried because we actually did some red‑teaming and said, &quot;Hey, you need to put on a Kevlar,&quot; or you know, an ACH.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>You need to put on body armor, and that just wasn't his nature.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>So, when he got up in the coupla [ph], they take over the gun, that's, you know, when the snipers hit him, but we did see from that, though ‑‑ and really, as we tell this story, it is very important because the timeline is extremely important because the ISF maturity that continued to go on through this time, this is really we are hitting another culminating point in January because they rebound from it.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>They lose four of their top five guys, but then they come back.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They end up getting a new police chief later on, but there was not ‑‑ there were a couple of flare‑ups in February‑March, and they were able to handle those by working with the governor, working with the IA, which was really a new level that had been ingested into there because there had only been a brigade there, and they moved the Basa‑rine [ph] 10th up to An Nasiriyah.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So that hadn't been seen.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>But that ‑‑ altogether, that partnership really, but that was the incident that happened in January, and it had big repercussions because the fall‑out was in February, an attack on Suq Ash Shuyukh on the OMS office that actually completely obliterated it to the ground, that was Abu Bakar's brother.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>who attacked the office?<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>That was ‑‑ well, basically, I wouldn't say attack.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They went to arrest the insurgents, to include the head OMS leader that was there, to arrest them for, you know, basically the attacks that happened in January, and what we said was a lot of these guys were what we'd say ‑‑ you know, Tom Clancy hit me in the knee ‑‑ but a sleeper cell, and not so much that they are crazy and all that, but they would just go about their normal business, but when called upon, each of them had a special capability that they could bring together, and this lashes out to the coordination of meetings that were occurring to the east.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So, when they did that, they could come back, and then they could give specific guidance of how they were going to set up the attack, where you were going to situation yourself, how we are going to do the mortars and the rockets to the tribal battalion, and then how we are going to ambush those key ISF officials as they are rolling through there.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>You know, there was another attack in January almost simultaneously in this attack in Nasiriyah in Basra.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>At the time, you're kind of in the middle of it, but there was definitely a connection to it, and so that, you know, gave us some insights on that connection between the special groups and criminals that were operating in the Maysan, Amara, Basra, Basra and Nasiriyah‑Dhi Qar area and the routes that were leading into Iraq out of Iran.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Yeah.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So, to touch on a point that Matt was talking about earlier, leading up to this, these attacks that occurred in January, you know, there was ‑‑ the attacks started going down for a wide range of reasons I talked to before, one, because, you know, the surge forces were out and getting after it.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We were able to defeat them at least in our area to take the MSRs and ASRs back from them.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We were interdicting their AA&amp;E flow and finding cache.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So they had less ammunition, if you will, to go conduct some of these attacks.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And I think that when we saw that shift away from moving arms and ammunition and equipment and do more of an investment and train the trainer and bring these people back into these areas, that may have previously just been a mid‑level kind of criminal, you know, tribally based smuggling network, now all of a sudden he was getting money and training to go conduct attacks against coalition forces or Iraqi forces.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>You know, between the months of January and March when everything unfolded down in Basra, that was really a key, key point down there because it really gave us some insights as to what the connections were between Amara and Basra and Nasiriyah and Baghdad and Diwaniyah and Hillah.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Right.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>And it was really that pressure that had never been seen because Sadr City, oh, by the way, was going on.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Right.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>And so you had all these pressure points being placed down where we had always saw individual cells, if you will, but now with that pressure, you started seeing cells that never talked to each other start to talk to each other and do coordination for movement sometimes to go opposite ways, to get supplies, AA&amp;E ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Yep.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>‑‑ and then also coordination with some of the HVIs, and really it would be remiss to say some of the critical nodes also, besides the huge changes, were the HVI pieces, you know, with the SWAT teams all the way from Southern Baville [ph] down to Nasiriyah.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>The ODA teams were marvelous in those areas, and then our troopers as well, to really go through the whole targeting cycle and deem a target as an HVI, to get the evidence, to get a warrant through the Iraqi courts, which that is probably a bigger thing that people gloss over a lot of times because, you know, to get into their decision cycle is why is, you know, Bad Guy Brooke, why is he bad, and a lot of times, we'd see a warrant that just said &quot;terrorism,&quot; and we'd say can you define us a little more.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>&quot;Well, yes, he had these ammunitions.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We feel he was responsible for this attack.&quot;<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>But that was very critical because you got to remember ‑‑ and you know this, but a lot of people forget that, you know, 2003 really is the beginning stage, and we're talking about politically, socially, economically a population that has been held down for so long, specifically the Shi'a, to be able to ‑‑ i's like ‑‑ like we were talking the other day, it's like giving your car to your 10‑year‑old, you know.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They're ‑‑ I mean ‑‑ and it's not to be mean against the Shi'a.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They've very good people, but the analogy has to be taken in that context because they are just not quite ready to drive.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>So ‑‑ but how long do you stay in that driver or that passenger side, you know, that ‑‑ heaven forbid, I never want to be a student teacher for driving, driver's ed, but that's what we do because overwatch is really being in that driver ‑‑ that passenger side, to let them be able to drive on their own, and it's difficult because it's going to affect us because if they go off the road, you're going to crash as well, but how much do you want to grab the steering wheel, how much do you want to use the brake that's on your side, you know, the right side of the car, and that's ‑‑ that's really the balancing act that Colonel Flynn had to work through to be able to know how much is enough, how much is to hold back, and ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>But we did know from the get‑go that holding back completely does not work.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>You know, we talk a lot about when we share with our paratroopers internally, both the other brigades is you have to be next to them.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>If you are not in that passenger‑side car, you are not going to know what is going on.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>You are not going to know they got the phone call or they are using their text e‑mail and they are not keeping their eyes on the road.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>You are not going to know those pieces because you are not next to them, and that teenager, just like that strong Iraqi, is not going to share with you unless you are near them as well.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>So that is really a critical point as ‑‑ pardon the pun ‑‑ as we drive forward, but that really has to be looked at because politically they start ‑‑ they got a judicial system that works now in the south.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We witnessed it firsthand.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>Now, is it swayed one way or the other?<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I mean look at New York in the 1900's.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I mean come on.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>It's going to be swayed a little bit, but at least it's there and stabilized, and that's a piece we're going to hit on as well, like what is needed in the future.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>It is those subject‑matter experts that are kind of outside the Army's realm to work, you know, how do you manage a budget for your provincial council, how do you make sure that, you know, the lights stay on, that you can run a government functioning, that you are spending the money for the tribes, for all the people, that you are getting education that is at least provided or it's there for everybody that's out there.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So it's quite ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Let me backtrack ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>[Laughter.]<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Yeah.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>‑‑ and ask you.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>You talked about the connections that you're first able to see in January between enemy groups and criminal elements and, indeed, Iranian‑trained funded groups ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Uh‑huh.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>‑‑ among the southern provinces and into Baghdad.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>What do you mean by connections?<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I will touch on this.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>Well, there is ‑‑ there is definitely a connection between the City of Amara, Basra, and Sadr City, and I think that Amara, because of its location, just inside of Iraq from Iran, and the lack ‑‑ well, there was no coalition presence there when we arrived.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>In fact, there was no ‑‑ there were no U.K. forces up there.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>The PRT hadn't even visited into the province in well over ‑‑ well, almost two years.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>So, you know, obviously with transnational sanctuary, you've got them right there in Amara, and Amara is connected to Basra.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>It's connected to Sadr City in that, effectively, those ‑‑ Sadr City and Hyaniyah [ph] in Basra were built from the tribes that came out of Amara, and so, you know, there's tribal connections.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>There is ‑‑ there is family connections, and the routes that lead to those locations, they were able to move EFPs and move components, move money, and move people to those locations to conduct attacks against coalition and Iraqi forces.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So is Amara a staging base for both Basra and Sadr City?<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Yes, no question.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>And by staging base, you mean that it was a sanctuary for enemy leadership or a safe haven or a place to put weapons?<span style="">&nbsp; </span>What purpose did it serve for the special groups and for [inaudible]?<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Well, we witnessed firsthand.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>It was always a way point, a passthrough, but just as much as it would flow into Basra, it would flow into Maysan as well and unimpeded because no one is going to bother it.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And the piece that Colonel Flynn ‑‑ Colonel Flynn hit on is very important because Saddam built these ‑‑ and I'll call them &quot;camps&quot; ‑‑ to help blue collar workers to build stuff, whether it is to build a dam, to build a powerplant, whatever it is, but that is why these cities were so important, and they had the tribal links together, and they have been transversing back and forth to see them.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>And they were really like the poor side of town in each, Sadr City, Amara, and also in Basra.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>So, even when talking with the ISF, they don't interdict a lot of AA&amp;E when we had spoken with them because, you know, whether it is somebody that is getting paid off to let it go through or not, but the important piece is on ‑‑ yes, Maysan being used as a sanctuary, it could store a lot of stuff, as we witnessed firsthand.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Of all the things, &quot;things&quot; being very vague, all the rockets, mortars, EFPs, small arms weapons, C4, all that stuff that we uncovered in really the first 12 days of going into just Amara and then expanding out into Maysan, that really the Iraqi Army and the National Police, along with our guys in the Marines that were part of a MIT, the National Police uncovered, and uncovered I will say by folks telling them where it was located.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>The safe haven, that is an interesting one.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I would surmise that most of our HVIs would use that to transition back over to Iran.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>I would surmise also when the pressure was placed, Sadr City, also Diwaniyah with Operation Lion Pounce in the fall, over into the winter, and then in Basra, that they would traverse in those areas where they would, you know, not be bothered, if you will, and they had sanctuary, and that was, you know, Governor Maliki, not the other Maliki, but from Amara, and they weren't that bad off, but the brigade that was there ‑‑ the two brigades that are there ‑‑ or actually, the one brigade is a part of the 10th, which was right outside our door.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Yeah.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Yeah.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>General Habib and crew.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And they were working, you know, working to get better, replacing folks that weren't so tied in heavy, but that is a tie that has been there for, you know, a lot of years, thousands of years of, hey, you know, we're connected this way, let this pass through, and we ‑‑ I also believe ‑‑ my personal opinion is ‑‑ confirmed by the ISF guys, but it is interchangeable, whether it is drugs or whether it is weapons, would move with these individuals, moving, you know, from Iran into Iraq and then the drugs then would push the, you know ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>The Iraqis were coming to us, and I mean they were telling us that Amara is a problem.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They knew it was a problem too.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>You know, how deep they wanted to get into it varied on in terms of who you talked to, but, you know, I know we will talk about this at some point, but really, the watershed event of Prime Minister Maliki making his stand in Basra and, you know, the coalition doing what we were able to do to really take the city back, that had an effect in April and May and June leading up to ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Sadr City.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>‑‑ when we did go into Amara because now they had lost their sort of ‑‑ their influence and power in Basra because we saw HVIs then leave Basra and either return to wherever they came from or they migrated up to Amara because now ‑‑ now Amara still had no force presence in it.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So they were just, you know, where you ‑‑ it's like a spring.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>You push down hard in Basra, they are going to pop up somewhere else, and they ended up popping up in Amara.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>So, you know, that afforded us the ability to, okay, now that we have Basra under control, the Iraqi Army has, you know, regained its credibility, its forces back out in the streets.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>It is doing what needs to be done, and then we see all of this presence of these people that we had been looking for.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>In Amara, it became pretty evident, the time that something had to be done.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And I think going back to the comment I made about the Iraqis, when that happened as well, they gained confidence as a result of doing what they did in Basra.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So now they were sort of, okay, &quot;We want to go to Amara too, and we know we need to do this.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So let's plan.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Let's coordinate.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Let's try to synchronize what we are going to do.&quot;<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And you know, I think that there was a lot of good that came out of that as a result of those events really that unfolded.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>And we used to refer to is as the &quot;Whisper Campaign&quot; because, you know, the losses taken by the insurgents in Sadr City and Basra had a great, a huge effect on what was going to transcribe or the outcome of what would happen tomorrow because, as you know, the first 12, 13 days when we went into Amara, zero incidents, you know.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Random gunfire here or there, but truly amazing because we had never seen that sense of control over any group because that is where you get into JAM or special groups.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>There is always going to be a cowboy out there that wants to go and, you know, put something on the side of the road or go try to interdict somebody, but nothing happened, which is very odd.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And they have had a couple, a couple incidents since our departure, but nothing that we thought we would see.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We thought we would see similar to Sadr City and Basra as far as the fight would go, but once again, that was Iraqi led.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>It was supported by a scalable support package by the coalition forces, and really a theme that could be taken away is ‑‑ and it is no BS ‑‑ the security provide by the Iraqis improved so much on our timetable as we were there, huge leaps and bounds, but they are always going to lack a few items that we have that they don't have yet.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>But they won't lack the courage, the determination, and the wherewithal to, you know, really a nationalistic flavor to move their country forward.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>A lot of folks that Colonel Flynn and I and the folks in the 182 spoke with is they did not like the negative influence that Iran would pose.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Did they like the produce and some of that stuff?<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Certainly, because that is your basic necessity that you need.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I think the haste with which Basra occurred, I mean they took some losses down there, and I think that the next big operation that we did after that was Amara, and Sadr City, of course, was going on effectively at the same time for, you know, a more prolonged period of time, but I think they, you know ‑‑ if we can credit them also with being a learning organization, you know, they learned, &quot;Hey, we don't want to do that again.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We don't want to hastily have to move forces into something that is that challenging because we are going to take some losses,&quot; and I think that by those experiences and then partnering with us to go to Amara, they felt like, &quot;Well, if we plan it properly, we coordinate it properly, then our chances of going into Amara and, you know, not having this huge battle where we are going to take some more losses will be to our advantage,&quot; and that is exactly what unfolded.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>I was really happy, and quite frankly, I was surprised.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They did a lot of great shaping operations up there ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Right.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>‑‑ with their own IO ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>That is the Whisper Campaign.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>‑‑ and their own public affairs.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They have their own, you know, civil, military, humanitarian assistance deliveries going on.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>It was really something.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>You know, it was really ‑‑ it was a great thing to see, as I mentioned to you when you came up there on your visit, so ‑‑ but again, I think they learned that as a result of their previous experiences in Basra and Sadr City and hopefully will continue to do so.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I can remember sitting at the table, actually snapping a couple pictures just to get a couple of the crew, but to take a look at having the DEJIS [ph], the INIS, having the Army commander and having the police all in a room and actually war‑gaming like we would do as just an Army unit, war‑gaming and actually planning to do the coordination of what would transpire and juxtaposing a little bit, but at the end of the day, that was the orders that were given by the INIS commander, you know, to say, hey, this is what we're going to do.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>What I always like to say ius, you know, the story unfolds, taking the SITEMP [ph] out of the proverbial Iraqi closet and sharing that with their partners because it's hard to share, you know.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They do have a sense of insecurity when it comes to some of their brothers, you know.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They love them, yes, but they don't know all the time who to trust, and I think in that room there, that day, those key leaders in there were trustable individuals that were moving the Iraq country forward and doing the planning.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And they were aware of the fact that things that they did would have impact.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So, in other words, we just can't blow up the whole block, you know, and just leave it, and they were really focused on the ‑‑ because they were asking us for a little bit of assistance, but on providing those packages to water and the food stuff on the tails of an operation, so that they would show, hey, we're not here just to destroy your homes and take your husbands away, but we want to be able to provide you something, you know, to assist you a little better as well.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So what was the plan that they developed for entering [inaudible]?<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Well, you know, they had the ‑‑ the IGFC, you know, headquarters, really the direction came down to the 1st Iraqi Army Division to be the lead headquarters for the operation.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>Of course, Maysan Province was a province of 10th Iraqi Army Division, which is the division that we were primarily working with.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>Of course, there was a little bit of synergy that was gained here with the coalition as well because the 1st Brigade of the 1st Iraqi Army Division also was the brigade that we worked with in Basra.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So 1st Brigade had, you know, partner MIT teams with battalions and brigades in Basra, and of course, 1st IA or 1st brigade ‑‑ 1st IA's Maine MIT was in Basra with us.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And because they were in Basra and they were there for a couple of months with elements of 1st Brigade, we really almost ‑‑ you know, after sort of things settled down in Basra, we really started planning and coordinating and synchronizing the operations that the Iraqis wanted to conduct into Amara.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>Later, the Iraqis ‑‑ the IGFC designated a national police brigade, was also going to be part of the operation, and they were going to come down from ‑‑ from the north.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>So, really, through the 1st Iraqi Army Division commander and the 10th Iraqi Army Division commander ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Names?<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Well, we have General Habib from the 10th Iraqi Army, and the 1st Iraqi Army Division commander was General ‑‑ I'm trying to remember.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I see him in the front too.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>It's bad.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Oh, I can see his face right now.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>He'd kick us in the knee.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>[Laughter.]<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>It will come to me in a minute.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Roger.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Nonetheless, those two headquarters shared their plans, and we had a couple of war games with them.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Of course, we were talking with his MIT team and in late May, early June.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>There was a discussion over the timing of it, and so in late June, we ended up moving up into Amara, and there was forces that came out of Basra.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>A National Police Brigade came down from the north through Al‑Kut, and 10th Iraqi Army Division and the bulk of our forces came up through Nasiriyah and across ASR Worthington into Amara, and we used multiple ways to get there, air, rotary wing air, fixed‑wing air, ground.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And really, you know, the Iraqi Army, I credit their coordination on this and the execution part because they were deliberate in how they did it.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They shared information as best they could.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>We have all these, you know, formal and high‑tech means of sharing information.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They just pick up a cell phone and say go do this, and that is how they coordinate their operations, but it worked fine, and you know, they have ‑‑ you know, we were fortunate in that I had a good personal relationship with General Habib.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>Of course, as mentioned to your earlier, General Saad, who was then ‑‑ he was the former 40th Brigade, 10th Iraqi Army Division commander, and had been designated the Maysan provincial chief of police.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>So my, you know, year‑long, you know, relationship with General Saad was very helpful because now he was the ‑‑ he was the chief of the police in the Maysan province, and I think that our biggest concern was not the Army because the brigade that was in Maysan province based in Amara was part of the 10th IA.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>It was how was the police going to respond to t he movement of all these forces, Iraqi forces and coalition forces into Maysan.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So, presumably, the police had been commanded by another individual just prior to the operations.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Yeah.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Roger.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Who was he?<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>And he was removed.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We never even got to see him.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Yeah.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>He was removed prior to us coming there, you know, for corruption and for allegations that he wasn't supporting the governor.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I can see his face.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>And then allowing JAM special groups to sort of ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Well, he was actually supporting Governor Maliki.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Yeah.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>But they left him in place, which that is interesting as well.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>What party is he from?<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Well, I believe he's Dawah [ph], but he is ‑‑ he is intertwined a little bit with Prime Minister Maliki somehow, some way.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I mean I shouldn't say somehow.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>It is a very important ‑‑ I won't step in the political arena, but if you got to see in the end of June, the press conference that Prime Minister Maliki gave, it was awesome in the regards that he was reaching out to the tribes, had a good discussion of what they were going to do in Maysan, but when he finished, the key part of all that was he went and sat next to Governor Maliki and put his arm around him.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>Now, who knows what he whispered?<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Maybe he said if you have anything happen, you know, you're done, or maybe he said hey, you know, hang in there.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Who knows?<span style="">&nbsp; </span>But seeing that on TV was very important because you have to look at it this way.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>There's a lot of things that were developing.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>As we rolled ‑‑ actually, the first couple of times we reconned into Amara, we were amazed at the sheer things that were going on, and going on, you know, new roads being built, new buildings being built, sewerage pipes being laid and stuff, because remember the PRT had not been up in there.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So that was all organic to Governor Maliki, good, bad, or ugly, but that would go back to him to say he is moving forward on these projects, getting jobs to people, et cetera.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>So we wrestled with that a lot because it wasn't really our decision what they were going to do with him.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They did house arrest for several days.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They kind of left him alone, but really our only opinion that we provided was leave him there and make him responsible, since he was there when things weren't that good.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They were trying to get better, but still leave him here, and let the voters when the elections come about, let them decide then, because he is probably better to keep under your thumb than he is to let go and run back to Iran or wherever you go, but keep him there until elections.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And we're curious on the elections too because that's going to be ‑‑ that's really a decisive moment as well.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I haven't really been following what had happened yet, but they're supposed to be occurring pretty soon.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>But that will be very important because, as I said, you know, a lot of people will talk about it in a coffee shop, you know, well, it's democracy, we're shoving it on them and everything.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Well, like I said, it started in 2003.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I mean they have not known how to hold onto what they have now and then build from it.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I mean they are learning this as they go, but that is going to be a very crucial step.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>We are not playing a role in that at all.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>That is all the Iraqis.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>That is all Iraqi led as far as the election stuff, which it should be, because we shouldn't be ‑‑ I mean maybe if something happened, but they are making sure the polling sites are secure.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They are making sure that the ballots aren't stacked.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They are making sure people take their thumbprints, you know, to make sure how people register in their voting, but I think that's a good thing because, once again, now they are getting to the 13, 14.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They are getting the learner's permit, you know, and that's a big piece to move down the road for them.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>It will be a huge success.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>If I can just go back to Amara for a minute and pick an aspect of this.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I think nit is important really in all the provinces that we operated in and as more provinces go pick balancing how much assistance you give them to allowing them to become self‑reliant and even the perception to the population that they can rely on their elected government officials [inaudible].<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And I think in Maysan and Amara, there was a balancing of that because it was a picked province.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Yes, there hadn't been any coalition forces there.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Yes, we knew there was a problem in Amara, and of course, the EFPs that were sitting there and the rockets that were sitting there, they were killing U.S. and Iraqi soldiers.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>I think everybody knew that something needed to be done about it, and I just think that by Prime Minister Maliki taking the steps he took in Amara or ‑‑ correction ‑‑ in Basra and then the same steps effectively they took in the Maysan province with Governor Maliki were important.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>That was an important way for him to expand his ‑‑ I shouldn't say expand his power, but to showcase his power to subordinate provincial governors, that look, if you are not operating within the parameters of good governance, then I am going to address that issue as the prime minister.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And I think doing that in Basra and Amara was important.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>It was important for the Iraqi Security Forces to have that.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>It was important for the Shi'a population of many of his own party to see that.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I thin it was important for the Sunni population to see that because now it was, you know, a Shi'a prime minister taking actions against his own population, and I think that that really was an important sort of milestone in his tenure so far today.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>I mean obviously, it had an effect of itself, no question about it, and we were also able to pull a lot of ordinance out of there which, you know, saves an enormous amount of lives.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>As we look at this situation, it seems to me that you have learned a lot about what the Shi'a insurgency, so to speak, was about [inaudible], what its purposes were, how it was organized, and I would very much appreciate it if you could let us know what it consisted of.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Well, while it may seem like it is all sort of one population down there, Shi'a, there's ‑‑ it is ‑‑ it is very complex, and there's no question that the Iranian influence in the south was trying to expand its influence.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>Of course, you have the national resources in the south with the southern oil fields and the port in Basra, and you do have commonality in that they are Shi'a.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And I know that, you know, people speak of the Arab‑Persian divide, but honestly, I think that's a little less than it was probably three or four decades ago.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>To a degree, it's still there, but I think it's more important that Iraqis think that they are Iraqis first and nationalistic further grows.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>I do think that that insurgency consisted of the movement of weapons and finance and leaders back and forth across the border, doing training, as we spoke of earlier, sharing information, and then going to, you know, places like Baghdad and Basra to, you know, sort of gain their ‑‑ or expand their power base and their network in those two urban areas.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>Of course, I have often said that Basra is really the strategic prize because of its location and because of its importance to the economic growth and, therefore, the social and government growth of Iraq, and I think that the portions of the special groups that were breaking away, if you will, and really not following the edicts at least that were publicly announced by Muqtada al‑Sadr were an easy organization for Qud Force operatives and surrogates and Lebanese Hezbollah to velcro into and then use those as a proxy force in the south to do their dirty work.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>And what did they want to achieve?<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Well, I think ultimately, it is probably to gain some political clout inside Iraq, and I think if they could keep a weak central government and embarrass the U.S. forces that were there through either, you know, killing, hostages, or just having us not be successful, I mean ultimately I think that would have been ‑‑ those two objectives and gaining and wielding more power and influence in Basra, those three things probably would have been at least their ‑‑ I would say probably their short to mid‑term objectives while we were still there.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>I think that if I could look back on that right now, given ‑‑ I think the central government, though, is no longer weak.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I thin it is gaining in strength.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They have lost their grip on the City of Basra, which is a good thing for us.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>The last part is what will the outcome of the elections be, and that will be ‑‑ that is kind of the unknown right now, how much influence can they gain by the upcoming elections.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>I don't want to overstate the fact as well that, you know, Iraq and Iran are tied in the south with economics.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I mean, you know, a lot of produce comes in from Iran to help the population in the south, particularly fruits and vegetables, you know, things that people need to sustain themselves.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>At the same time, you know, there is going to have to be a relationship that develops, and we are going to just have to continue to keep an eye on it between Iraq and Iran because they are going to need one another.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They are going to need to have that balance on the border, so it is not confrontational, but affords both countries to prosper a little bit.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>I think that over time that it can get that way.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>It is just going to need a little bit of time to help that mature and balance really.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We always like to say multi‑phase, multi‑problem, but really what that means is a piece that can't be excluded is Islamic revolution, you know, and that kind of gets whitewashed because we ‑‑ in our country, people look at religion a little differently, but I would tell you from the perspective of Iraq and its influence is if it ‑‑ along with a weakened central government, but also weakened ISF, because they don't need to have big growling dogs on their border because that's the last thing they would want to have to happen.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>But I think you have to look at it almost in a part ‑‑ and I will give you a really bad analogy, but almost Miami 1980 with all the drugs that came through, and the analogy is that you had people that would move those drugs, that had no doing in the sale of them, the distribution and all.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>All they were, were a proxy that moved.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>Really, if you look at the Shi'a criminal element, that is one of those folks, tied most likely into a tribe, but is used to moving stuff form Point A to B and doesn't really care what it is at the end of the day because he is not the one that is actually going to deliver it and then make it explode, if you will, but that could be drugs.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>That could be EFPs, you name it, but he is just a mule, if you will, for a better term, to move from Point A to B.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So that is your criminal.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>Along with the criminal, you had the same street thug kind of mindness that we have in our States as well.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I own these 38th and 39th areas down in Basra.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They're mine.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I am the kingpin.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So, therefore, I am a JAM company commander.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Well, who dubbed him that?<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Probably either the ISF or us or somebody else because they don't go, &quot;Hey, I am<span style="">&nbsp; </span>JAM company commander.&quot;<span style="">&nbsp; </span>No, I have my block area that I am in charge.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So you have that going on as well, and that's just basic fighting that I am in charge of my little piece of the ground.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>But then you move to the next level, and that's ‑‑ that's where it got kind of ‑‑ it became a little more complicated because Jaish al‑Mahdi, as we know it, JAM, those that were adhering to Muqtada al‑Sadr, what he was saying, we kept in that box.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And then special groups, we took out of the box and said these are the ones that aren't adhering.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>This was like the August‑September time frame, and so the special groups, those are the ones that actually got the specialized training, that had a little more care, a little more nurturing, but a lot of times, even within the special groups, when they would actually execute an order, they didn't know where it came from.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>It is sort of like the mafia concept.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>You know, you're not going to know that Tony Soprano gave you the order to put the hit out.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>In this case, you are not going to know that Iran or IRGC, Qud's Force or the Iranian Republican Guard Corps or Qud's Force actually put that out because when it comes down the pike, it is like if Colonel Flynn gives me an order, I am going to tell my troops, &quot;This is the order we have,&quot; not, &quot;Hey, Colonel Flynn told me.&quot;<span style="">&nbsp; </span>No, this is how it works.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So that also gets lost in what we call the &quot;special group people&quot; because ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>But a vignette to that is with the pressure pieces and with the layers as we go back in our conversation that we started to uncover, really with all these things happening simultaneously over time, it allowed us to see a network of networks of the insurgency that took us from the criminal element all the way to the top HVIs, interconnected, which we were not able to see it.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And we have been talking about this for the last couple days, but it is very interesting because ‑‑ we use the word &quot;complex,&quot; but it is very complex, but it is almost like it was a puzzle, and every piece that we did along the way was done through really deep planning and coordinating and synchronization from the brigade's perspective of how can we do more.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>You know, first, how can we do more with less?<span style="">&nbsp; </span>You know get more people out there, but how can we do the next step?<span style="">&nbsp; </span>And it's not that we had all the right answers, but that guide path that Colonel Flynn provided through the staff to get his direction and guidance really allowed us to get each one of those ‑‑ I'm so into analogies for [inaudible], but all those little puzzle pieces to put it together, to actually see a picture of the south that we had never seen before.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And I really have to go back, and I know it's a bad word, but really the status quo because it was like, you know, economy force, we are going leave that alone, but we had to not only tell the ISF and the provincial leaders, but also our leadership as well, and they listened.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And we said, &quot;There is systemic problems down here that we need to wrestle with,&quot; getting back to how does Iran want to influence.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Maybe it is more non‑kinetic now.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Maybe it is more in the political arena or the central services arena where they peel back more from the kinetic attacks.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And you also have to look at it as because of that, the Iraqis almost put a status quo on the south as well.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They didn't have MITs with their armies.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>You know, the Brits started to have some, et cetera, but they didn't have the focus as Baghdad and al‑Qaeda fight had, and really that was ‑‑ our drum beat from the beginning was because we were able to ‑‑ you asked the question of how we get off the road.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Because we were able to quell those attacks, get out to the population, a lot of it more operationally and strategic to look at the picture what was going on ‑‑ and because Colonel Flynn alluded to this.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>A BCT covering five provinces?<span style="">&nbsp; </span>That is ‑‑ wow, that's ‑‑ I think you said yesterday, 300 by 200, just a rough shot, kilometers.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>That is a lot of land mass, where a normal brigade is focused on ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I think, you know, to your question about the insurgents in the south, I mean probably the difference in where we were and what we were doing and, you know, again, the capabilities there or the Tallil airfield, we really did have to take a regional look at what was going on in the south.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>I mean if you are in al‑Rashid or Endora [ph], you know, you kind of ‑‑ you're kind of looking at that area that you're at.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Mind you, it's different terrain, different ‑‑ different conditions, but because we, you know ‑‑ all of these areas influenced what we were doing, and because we were co‑located with organizations that covered the same provinces and because I did strike up a good relationship with the U.K. Headquarters in Basra, I really had to because the Australians were co‑located with me, the Romanians were co‑located with me.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We were operating in their battle space for large parts of the southern portion.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>We really had to bring all this stuff together because we really had to work with one another to uncover really the question you were asking, which was what was going on in the south, what was its insurgency, and what was ‑‑ or what was part of the insurgency and how was it ‑‑ you know, how was it connected, and I think by us doing that, we started to see some of those connections with a lot more clarity.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And I think that the Iraqi security forces, at least the leadership, they knew of it, and they just needed our help in addressing it.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Obviously, some were more adamant about getting after it quicker, and others were a little more slow, but I think ‑‑ you know, again, I can go back to that watershed event in Basra.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>That kind of changed everything.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So, obviously, we are waiting for the political dynamics to play out with the provincial elections that we hope will take place by the end of 2008.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>In the meantime, we know that many of the enemy from al‑Amara fled after your operations back to Iran.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Uh‑huh.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So is Iran and are the special groups still a threat to the outcome, the political outcome in the south?<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Well, I think ‑‑ I think that they are ‑‑ are they a threat to the political outcome?<span style="">&nbsp; </span>That would be ‑‑ I think that ‑‑ again, as I said earlier, a weakened central government, embarrass the U.S. forces, and then expand power and influence.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>How do they expand the power and influence?<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They do that in a multi‑pronged [inaudible], you know, social, economic, political.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>These elections coming up, I certainly feel that they are going to try to influence those elections.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>How they do that, I don't know.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>I mean are they going to try to do it by, you know, an uptick in assassinations against the political leaders to spread intimidating and fear?<span style="">&nbsp; </span>That may be one approach.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They certainly have tried that before.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They may try it again.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>Could they try to wreck the elections somehow to undermine its legitimacy?<span style="">&nbsp; </span>That is possible.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>I don't know what approach they will take, but I do feel that they will try to influence those elections somehow from the political outcome.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>I think that with the HVIs fleeing, you know, the same thing happened in Basra, and they started to leak back in a little bit, but you know, they have been marginalized, and I don't know if they can come back and get to the same level that they were before, and that the elements that are their key leaders may have to regroup a little more and think about exactly what are our objectives now, if we can't weaken the central government, if we can't embarrass the U.S. forces from ‑‑ or the coalition forces from leaving Iraq, then what do we need to do, and to your question, it probably is some kind of an influence on the political elections, but I just don't know how they are going to do that.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And I think that at some point, the HVIs may come back in.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I think the question is are they going to go back to their former position or are they going to take another role and attempt to try to become part of the political apparatus, and so ‑‑ because they could come back and not be a special groups leader anymore and attack.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They could just come back and, you know, merge themselves back into the political or even the religious organizations, the tribal organizations, and then take their role that way.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I am smiling because one of the dangers is, you know, HVI kinetic.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Okay.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>That's what we're looking at, but you got to remember there's surrogate offices all through Iraq, with Iranian presence, and I would argue that there are HVIs that we don't know about that directly influence every day, both the policies, the procedures, everything that is going on within the Iraqi confines, specifically in the south, because another deep down discussion that needs to occur is does Iran want a nationalist south where all the provinces are together.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>I would argue no because if you keep Maysan and Basra separate with the natural gas, with the oil, with the copper, the other items that are there, it gives them more influence to intimidate those provinces to be able to pull off ‑‑ not to pick on Iran totally, but you know, it gives them a little more influence because the stronger that Iraq central government goes back to how they are going to eventually do that, that ‑‑ the hydrocarbon law and the stuff that is coming up they are going to pass is very important because if you are not one of those provinces that are stuck together when they find the new oil, well, you don't get the money stuff, and I know it comes back to money and all that stuff, but that's ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And I would tell you that there are already enemies within Iraq that we don't put on a card or that we don't put on an HVI list that, you know, have been there for years and that are working within that, and I would tell you not all of them went back to Iran.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>There's a couple other countries that they might ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>[Laughter.]<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>There's a caution about them coming back.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>I also believe that, you know, this is something that the Iraqi government is going to have to address.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I mean, you know ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>And they know them.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>COL FLYNN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They know them, as well as we know them.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>In fact, they probably know them better, and so this is ‑‑ you know, if they come back and they, you know, create internal strife, then, you know, they are going to have to address that, and some of those individuals have committed crimes and contributed to killing American soldiers and Iraqi civilians and soldiers.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So there is a degree of collective accountability that has to go on here, and I think it has to happen, you know, with the political leaders and the security force, whether Army and police, and they are going to have to hold these people accountable for their actions, their previous actions at this point.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>They are not doing them now, but ‑‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And you know, I was encouraged at the end there.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>The police chief in the Dhi Qar province, the one that was there did not have a very good relationship with the governor.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>In fact, they were really deeply fractured, and they replaced him, and the new police chief that came in [inaudible] General Samad [ph] was ‑‑ came from Baghdad, and the governor initially didn't want him there, but you know, the guy was impartial.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I mean he was doing his job.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>He was doing it as an Iraqi first, and it was really an encouraging sign to have him come down there and do that because ‑‑ and he started to pull in the ‑‑ you know, the special tactics unit from the police, working with the Army, and he was working with the governor, although the governor initially didn't want him, but just to see that, you know ‑‑ you know, okay, they have got differences, but they are trying to pull themselves together and work together.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>To see a couple of leaders actually do that was really pretty ‑‑ it was encouraging.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>And I have not previously seen that, at least in that particular provinces.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Other provinces were doing it. Muthanna was doing a great job, but in Dhi Qar to see that, that was really good, particularly toward the end because it hadn't been happening before.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>MAJ BROOKE:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>And you have to think about it.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>These are courageous human beings.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I mean we put George Washington on a pedestal, you know, some of our forefathers that fought really an insurgency back then ‑‑ sorry, U.K.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>But I mean it's the same concept, and these guys have a target on their whole ‑‑ their back, their head, everywhere, and they are still moving forward to do this.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>I always say it's a lot like Elliot Ness because during prohibition, everybody wanted to take that guy out because they all wanted to get their drink, but in this case, guys like General Othman, who we didn't talk much about, up at 8th Iraqi Army, he has been around for a long time.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>That guy is a hero, you know.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>General Saad, you know, he's a hero.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>General Samad.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Those guys that are living basically fearless every day because their life could be taken away at any time, you know, go back to Abu Bakar and the January piece.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I mean true heroes.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>To be able to sit with them and discuss ‑‑ and granted, to us it's like 82nd Airborne.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>We have no fear either, but you know, to sit in the same room and be able to have that, it's a very proud moment to be part of that and to see that growth.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>So that's my kind of bite on the courageousness of those individuals and the time we did, very short time.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>I mean it seems long for families.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>I know my wife would hit me, but 14 months seems long.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>But really 14 months is just a drop in the bucket because you got to remember, you know ‑‑ bring up eating soup with a knife ‑‑ you know, counter‑insurgency wasn't one for at least 12 years.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>It takes a lot of time, and the folks that don't want to see it work, they have time on their side, and they will wait it out, and they will wait to see who changes out.<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Hey, well, we're going to lose another battalion, another brigade, and that is going to be very important in the future because it is how do you still maintain that right‑seat driver mode, but not lose visibility of what is going on, so that they can take their country back at the end of the day and run forward.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>DR. KAGAN:<span style="">&nbsp; </span>Well, I thank the two of you and indeed the 1st Brigade of the 82nd for all the courage that you have shown in your service to America, and I am really pleased to have had both of you here today to talk with us and the Institute for the Study of War.<o:p></o:p></span></p>
<p class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 28.8pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Cambria&quot;,&quot;serif&quot;;"><span style="">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>‑ ‑ ‑<o:p></o:p></span></p>
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Kimberly Kagan AEI Panel Presentation on Iraqi Politics

The surge has accomplished all of its major goals and made a strong Iraq possible, but only if the American military commitment continues, said three foreign policy experts recently during a panel appearance at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI).

 

Troop levels must stay constant through the 2009 Iraqi parliamentary elections to address the inevitable friction between competing parties and help convince the Iraqi citizens of the permanence of their achievements, argued the panelists.

 

"We have learned from past experience in Iraq that these elections are not the end of a [political] process, but actually the beginning," said ISW's Kimberly Kagan, explaining that it is not possible to set a date for troop withdrawals based on the outcome of a single election. Iraqis are preparing for provincial elections this fall and then parliamentary elections next year.

 

According to the speakers, Iraq has the potential to be one of the world's largest oil exporting countries, a force for peace between the Shia and Sunni in the region, and the breadbasket of the Middle East.

 

Listen to Part 1 of Kim's panel presentation.

 

Listen to Part 2 of Kim's panel presentation.

 

Download the Transcript of Kim Kagan's panel presentation.

 

Learn more about the panel.

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Transcript: 

<p style="text-align: center;"><span style="color: rgb(51, 102, 255);">PANEL PRESENTATION DR. KIM KAGAN,</span></p>
<p style="text-align: center;">Institute for the Study of War</p>
<p style="text-align: center;">[Transcript produced from digital recording.]</p>
<p style="text-align: center;">Prepared by: MALLOY TRANSCRIPTION SERVICE 7040 31st Street, N.W. Washington, D.C. 20015 (202) 362-6622 - - -</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MODERATOR:</u> I didn't say any real words of introduction about Kim, but I do think it is important to point out we talk a lot about results here, and we talk a lot about strategy. If ever you want to understand exactly what the ingredients were that ended up with the cake that we have now, it is Kim's work that will lead you there.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p>She has written a great deal about it in the standard, but in addition, you can find on her website, which I am hopefully flagging for her, UnderstandingWar.org, a really excellent interactive understanding of a whole variety of operations that you see to get into the guts of just why it is that we are succeeding where we are succeeding on the ground. So, with that short introduction, Kim.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN:</u> Thank you very much, Danielle. Today, I actually would like to talk about something I don't usually talk about, namely Iraqi politics, and it has been a truism in our Washington debate and discussion that although the surge has reduced violence in Iraq, it has not induced political progress and, therefore, it is a failure. I do not think that that truism is true, and I would like to take you through how the surge has affected Iraqi politics, what the Iraqi political situation looks like right now, and where I think it may be headed over the next six to eight months.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p>First, I think we need to go back to 2006 and remember what was causing the logjam within Iraqi politics. We have a very weak prime minister, Prime Minister Maliki, who does not control his appointments to cabinet positions. So, if we think to other parliamentary-style governments, for example, to Britain, we think about a prime minister being able to appoint all of his ministers and, therefore, have them execute the policies that he desires to execute. Prime Minister Maliki could not do this. That is not how the Iraqi constitution functions, and in the face of increasing violence and also in the face of parliamentary opposition, Prime Minister Maliki was extremely weak and not actually able to execute policy.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p>By the end of November 2006, the Sadrist Trend had essentially pulled its parliamentarians out of the Council of Representatives, making it impossible for legislation to pass and creating what was an insuperable roadblock to any legislative progress whatsoever because it was not possible to get a quorum within the Council of Representatives once that group had withdrawn. So, as we really turned into the surge itself, we had the Sadrist Trend, the party of Moqtada al-Sadr essentially thwarting whatever desires of Prime Minister Maliki there were and making it impossible for any legislation to get passed, in addition to creating a violent environment on the ground in Baghdad, and we have to remember that at that time, the Iraqi security forces were not capable of securing the population of Baghdad, and they were challenged by militia groups, by sectarian-minded groups, by al-Qaeda in Iraq, and since Prime Minister Maliki not only did not have control of his security forces, but did not have control of a militia, he had no way of affecting the violence on the ground any more than he did the legislation.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p>I will fast-forward a little bit through 2007 to remind you that it was quite quickly after the surge was announced that Moqtada al-Sadr left Baghdad or Najaf or wherever he likes to hang out for Iran, and it was at that time also that a number of his closest comrades were arrested by special raids in the dark that really made it less possible for him to function within Iraq and created sort of competition among a variety of factions within the Sadrist Trend and its variant militias that really lasted through the summer of 2007. Moqtada al-Sadr announced a cease-fire of his militia groups in January-February 2007 at the beginning of the surge, reiterated that cease-fire again in August of 2007 and then again in February of 2008. But what happened over the course of the summer of 2007 as the power of Sadr really became diminished and as al-Qaeda in Iraq became less able to launch its spectacular attacks and thereby intimidate the government of Iraq was that a faintly working coalition among the leaders of political parties within Iraq began to take shape, and Prime Minister Maliki, along with his Shi'a and Kurdish colleagues, developed a mechanism for discussing legislative issues, even without having a legislative process that was well underway, and these discussions became known as the Three Plus One talks which really involved the three leading figures within Iraqi politics and across parties, talks that begin essentially in August of 2007.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p>So it is really at the end of 2007 and the beginning of 2008, as a result of those talks among party leadership, that we began to see the legislative process in Iraq rekindled and a variety of parliamentarians return, but also a variety of political parties able to work on some of the major benchmark legislation that had been so essential to our Congress' view of what the next political steps were inside Iraq, and therefore, we saw the passage of legislation, such as the Debathification law, the Provincial Powers law, which enabled the Iraqi government to begin to function and to create a certain kind of pattern of reconciliation at the national level that is not really sort of a wonderful Kum Ba Ya moment, but really a series of bureaucratic obstacles overcome that might allow reconciliation in the future.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p>Right now in Iraq, we actually see the fruits of this benchmark legislation really generating a new level of vigorous discussion and indeed competition among political parties. On the one hand, we have the rise of some new political parties, in particular, the Sahwah or the Awakening Party, that is derived from the Sunni tribal sheiks in Anbar who have essentially opposed al-Qaeda within the province and worked side by side with U.S. soldiers and Iraqi security forces in order to defeat al-Qaeda within the provinces. They have formed their own political party, really concentrated in Anbar, but also spread a little bit to the north and east of that, and they are engaged in a competition with the existing Sunni political parties and in particular the IIP, the Iraqi Islamic Party whose leading figure right now is Tariq al-Hashimi, and we are seeing a rivalry between these two parties as they compete for different Sunni political interests.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p>The IIP was a party of exiles. The Sahwah is a party of indigenous Iraqis. The IIP is a party that has been focused on one segment of the Sunni population. The Sahwah is focused on the tribal segment of the population. So we are seeing not only the growth of new political parties within the Sunni movement, but a competition between the old political parties and the new political parties that is likely to characterize Iraqi politics over the next year or two years. In addition, we are seeing competition among Shi'a parties, particularly among Prime Minister Maliki and his Dawa party and the party whom we abbreviate severely right now as ISCI, the &quot;Supreme Council,&quot; as it refers to itself, within Iraq, and they are competing for the votes of Shi'a throughout Baghdad and throughout the south. The rivalry, I think has been sharpened by Prime Minister Maliki's growing strength in light of the operations he has conducted against the militia groups in Baghdad and in Basra, and that has really paved the way for these two parties to dominate the Shi'a vote within the upcoming provincial elections. And the competition is fierce. We can see Prime Minister Maliki bidding for essentially the ability to provide services to people in Sadr City, in Basra, and throughout the south as a way of strengthening his political hand. We also see almost everywhere we go the posters of ISCI and its religious figures competing with Maliki's so-called secular Dawa party. In addition, we have a limited degree of flux and change within the Office of the Martyr Sadr and the Sadrist Trend as their parliamentary leaders essentially split themselves from the militia leaders and really tried to find their way to some sort of safe haven, so that they can continue to participate in national politics, even though the Sadrist organization as a whole has been so gravely troubled and, quite frankly, almost defeated by the recent operations.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p>So we see a little bit of a power struggle within the Sadrist Trend. Those parliamentarians who now exist are facing up to the fact that they really don't have a place to be in a political infrastructure that supports them fully, and so they are influx in a set of interesting debates amongst themselves, generated not least by the fact that the government of Iraq has determined that parties that have militias are not permitted to run in elections and, therefore, really they have caused a degree of separation among these parties. The OMS cannot associate itself as closely with the militias, nor can the Sadrist Trend parliamentarians associate itself with the militias, and we have a competition or struggle within that party. We have a great deal of friction as well generated by the Kurdish parties. I think we saw that quite clearly yesterday, as our good friend, Talabani, decided that he would veto the provincial election's legislation because it did not contain wording that suited him and the interests of the Kurdish regional government. And finally, in addition, we see the proliferation of secular political parties and lots of independents, so that there are now 502 -- yes, that's right -- 502 political parties that will be competing in the upcoming provincial elections.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p>What does this mean, and why does it matter? First and foremost, it tells you that there is a vibrant Iraqi political life, and that there is perhaps not only the political progress that we have seen in the passing of the benchmark legislation, but also a new and vibrant kind of discussion, really quite rambunctious, not neat, completely messy, quite vigorous, and we do not actually know right now what the parameters of Iraqi politics are going to look like this time next year. So, as we talk about Iraqi politics, we have to understand that those politics are influx. The terms of the discussion are now being set, and all of the politicians and the political parties are finding their space in the political spectrum and the way in which they will function and compete with other political parties. So the rhetoric that we hear from Iraq's political parties is different from what we heard before and is unusual to us, the United States, whether we hear it through the newspapers or whether our general officers or State Department folks, our ambassador sees it on the ground and has to wrestle with the fact that suddenly there is a new dynamic. Whereas, last year there were essentially three moving parts in the Iraqi political system, and they didn't really move at all. Now all of a sudden, we have many moving parts, and it is very hard to figure out how to balance their interests with ours and how we the United States should engage in this new highly political discussion within Iraq.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p>The second thing I would tell you is that this political competition is why Iraq's provincial elections that one hopes will be held sometime at the end of this year or the very beginning of next year is so important. On the one hand, the provincial elections are a way to enfranchise those who did not vote in the elections last time, particularly the Sunni population, but they are also a way of resolving some of the differences and the competition among all of these different fractious groups, and also paving the way for the national elections that will take place in 2009. I think we have learned from past experience that our elections in Iraq are not necessarily the end of a political process, but rather the beginning. So, as we head into these provincial elections, we have to make sure that we don't see them as simply the culmination of the surge and the new Iraqi political process, but as the start of whatever Iraqi politics will look like next. That is why I think we have started to hear from some of our commanders on the ground that force levels in Iraq really must stay where they are through Iraq's provincial elections, not simply to secure the elections, but also to mitigate the fact that those elections will generate competition among political parties and possibly a great deal of friction when their outcomes are known because I don't actually think that free and fair elections will necessarily determine one party is the winner in this struggle, but rather set the conditions for provincial elections coming up again in 2012.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p>And so there is a risk that we have in these provincial elections that they will, on the one hand, cause some content among groups that had not been enfranchised before, but also may provoke a violent response from those groups that do not receive what they expect, and therefore, it is very much in our interests, the interest of the United States and the interest of Iraq, to preserve stability through and possibly beyond the provincial elections. I will conclude there and turn this over to Fred. - - -</p>

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ISW Webcast with Maj. Gen. Mike Jones

In 2007, experts questioned whether Iraq’s National Police could act as an effective, non-sectarian force that could maintain security in Iraq’s cities.  The reform of the National Police and Iraq’s Ministry of Interior, which controls the police, has transformed this troubled institution.  These improvements have been, in part, due to the successful leadership of Major General Michael D. Jones.  MG Jones just returned from Iraq where he served as the Director General, Directorate of Interior Affairs, Multi-National Security Command Iraq.  His duties included providing Coalition assistance to the Iraqi Ministry of Interior, whose forces include the police, border forces, National Police, oil protection forces, facilities protection service, emergency response units, and ministerial forces and institutions.

ISW President, Kim Kagan, sits down for a webcast conversation with Maj. Gen. Jones.

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Transcript: 

<h3 style="text-align: center;"><span style="color: rgb(51, 102, 255);">INTERVIEW OF MAJOR GENERAL MICHAEL D. JONES </span></h3>
<h5 style="text-align: center;">CONDUCTED BY DR. KIM KAGAN, Institute for the Study of War</h5>
<h5 style="text-align: center;">[Transcript produced from digital recording.]</h5>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: Hello. This is Kim Kagan with the Institute for the Study of War, and today I have with us General Mike Jones, recently returned as the Commander of the CPATT, Coalition Police Advisory --</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: Training Team.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: -- Training Team, in Iraq, where he spent one year mentoring and growing the Iraqi Police force. I am thrilled to have him with us today. Thank you so much for joining us.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: Thanks, Kim. It's nice to be here with you.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: I really would like to hear from you the story of how the Iraqi Police and how the Ministry of Interior have changed over the one-year period that you served in Iraq, and to do that, I would like to go back and ask you about the conditions that you found when you first took your role as the Commanding General of CPATT. What were the major problems that you faced and that the Iraqi Police faced, the National Police faced, and way back in June, July 2007?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: Well, the first thing is the enforcement. As you recall, post the Samarra bombing, the level of violence in Iraq had increased markedly during that whole year period prior to the time that I arrived. So the level of violence was really extremely high, and of course, police forces by their nature are most vulnerable to that kind of violence. They are really not army-type forces, and so the resulting threats and intimidation of police forces, the casualties they were taking were all big challenges. In addition to that, of course, the Iraqi Ministry of Interior forces had grown markedly over the past couple years, and so all the challenges that go with any institution that goes through rapid growth were present at the ministry, and of course, some of the forces were clearly part of the problem.</p>
<p>The National Police, as you had mentioned, had a history of operating in sectarian ways, or at least portions of the National Police, and obviously, they had to be changed if they were going to contribute in a positive way to making the environment more secure.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: How many National Police were there when you took over CPATT?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: About 25,000 National Police.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: And how rapidly have they grown? What was the original number or the number the year before?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: Well, I think they had probably grown about 8- or 9,000 in the previous year, but the biggest problem with the National Police wasn't necessarily growth. Obviously, they had some of the associated problems with rapid expansion, but the bigger problem was behavior, and that is, in the previous year, they had some units that had operated in a sectarian way and had participated in operations that clearly were not law enforcement, that were clearly pursuant in a sectarian agenda.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: When you arrived, was there a priority mission to reduce the sectarianism and the sectarian behavior of the National Police forces that were engaged?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: Well, when I arrived, they had already begun doing that. Minister Bolani and the Minister of Interior had taken this issue on as a very important one. They had appointed a new commander of the National Police about seven or eight months before I got there and had begun a reform program in order to change the character of the National Police, and so they had already gone through the first couple phases.<br />
The first phase of their reform program was really to change out a lot of the senior leadership in the organization, and they basically cleaned out most of the senior leaders of the National Police, put in new leaders, also some of the forces, and then they had begun the second phase which was a training program in order to take these units, which if you look at their history had never really had any training, that they had been formed up without any kind of institutional training. It was just groups of people that had known each other, many of which had been in the previous army, and they were operating in a fairly undisciplined way. So they took them, sent them to training where one brigade at a time, they went through a training phase to both give them skills, also talk about the role of police and the rule of law, human rights, a whole lot of other issues, in order to try to change their behavior, and then deploy them back into sector where we saw pretty quick improvements in their performance. Before we go on and talk about those improvements, can you discuss the origins of the National Police and what those units had been before they were incorporated into the Iraqi security forces?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: Sure, sure. Well, actually, it goes back to my previous tour when I was there before, and it was really in the fall of 2004 that you saw the emergence of some interesting forces. The first call I got was: &quot;Hey, there are a bunch of people marching down here at the Baghdad Police College that say they're a unit. They're in various states of attire, and some of them have weapons. Most don't, et cetera, and we don't really know what's going on.&quot; So I went down and found them and found that they were a newly created Public Order Battalion. Later, I then ran into another organization called the &quot;Commando Battalion,&quot; and what had happened was the Ministry of Interior back then, in anticipation of the fact that they were going to be responsible for security for the elections that were upcoming in the beginning of 2005, had determined that the normal police would not be adequate for them to really be able to have security for the elections. So they decided they needed some higher end units, and one of which was called &quot;Public Order Battalions.&quot; They created some of these, and the same thing, these Commando Battalions, a little bit more paramilitary-like organizations. When I talked to the leaders of these units at the beginning, it was basically, &quot;Well, they asked me to be a battalion commander. So I called some friends from the old army or other associates, and they called there friends, and so here we are,&quot; and so they basically just formed up and then were assigned missions to go out and start securing sectors and do other operations.</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: When this kind of public order campaign began, if I recall correction, Minister Bolani was not Minister of the Interior.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: Right, right.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: It was Bayan Jabr who is now Minister of Finance.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: Right. Actually, it was before Bayan Jabr even --</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: Really?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: -- in the fall of 2004. Bayan Jabr came in the next year. So it was a significantly different environment. The level of violence was increasing, but clearly not what it became after the Samarra Mosque bombing, but it was still a significant level of violence, especially in Baghdad where these units were formed up and were deployed.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: When those units were engaged in 2005 in securing the elections and likewise in 2006 in securing public order in Baghdad, did they undergo any changes in their organization in that time?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: Well, in 2004, 2005, basically I think the units pretty much stayed with the same organization, and they actually provided a level of security for that first election, which was in fact a major success story on the part of the Iraqi security forces. They helped secure polling places and the movement of people to polling places and so forth. So they actually performed what I think was a beneficial kind of role. I left in spring of 2005. Subsequent to that, we did see changes that happened. In 2006, they were combined into this force called the &quot;National Police&quot; because you had a variety of different kinds of units out there with different names. All of them had different organizations in one way or another in a very loosely controlled organization. So they combined them into this single organization called the &quot;National Police&quot; and got rid of the Public Order Battalion versus the Commando Battalion and other kinds of names that they had and somewhat standardized the kind of units into about 750-man battalions and that kind of thing. However, also during that time, again, post-Samarra bombing, you saw increases in sectarian violence, and that is when some of these units started participating in the sectarian violence, not establishing public order, but contributing to the escalation of the sectarianism.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: Can you describe what were the characteristics of the units of the leaders that engaged in the sectarian violence? Was it actually unit behavior at the division level, at the brigade level, at the battalion level, or was it a problem with individuals within these units?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: I think to some degree, a little bit of both. I mean, you had cases where in their off-duty time, you would have members of these organizations going out and participating in operations sectarian in nature. In some cases, though, you had units that were out operating in a sectarian way. The 2nd Brigade of the 1st National Police Division is the one that was probably the most obvious in terms of their behavior, but there were others also that were out doing operations that were clearly sectarian, whether it was threat and intimidation in order to cause people to move out of their homes or those kinds of things, all the way up to and including violence against others, the Sunni population primarily. So you saw a mix of both, either of which is unacceptable, of course, but the one most concerting was clearly the unit behaviors that we saw.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: As the rebluing program began, the program of reforming the National Police by training the units and also for policing the leaders, the program was underway for six or seven months before you took command at CPATT. What was the initial effect of replacing the leaders in the units? Were the units that had shown particularly clear sectarian programs in 2006 changed dramatically by the leadership change?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: Well, I think it is kind of hard to underestimate the impact of the leadership changes that occurred. If you look at just the numbers, both of the division commanders were replaced. They had nine brigades at that time. All nine brigade commanders were replaced. Of the 28 battalion commanders, they replaced 17 of them. So, if you just looked at it institutionally, you can imagine if the U.S. Army replaced all of utilities division commanders and all its brigade commanders and two-thirds of its battalion commanders, what kind of impact would that have on people understanding that the leadership was serious about change. So I think that is the first thing. The second thing is it let people know that the kinds of behavior that had been going on was clearly unacceptable and that people would be held accountable for the behavior of their units, and so these new leaders came in. Since that time, one of the brigade commanders of one of the brigades that came in and replaced the previous guy has since been fired because he wasn't performing and wasn't measuring up. That wasn't so much sectarianism as it was just the unit not performing well, and several more battalion commanders had been fired since then in order to put in leaders that were more capable. So that has continued to go on where leaders are being held accountable for the performance of their units, which is a healthy thing. It is a very important thing. So I think the impact was huge. In addition to that, over 1,300 individual policemen in those units were also fired, and then in addition to that, a whole lot that were moved to other units. That is kind of an Iraqi method of changing the dynamic in a unit is to take people who have been influenced by poor leaders and, when you bring in new leaders, taking some of those guys and moving them to other units where they kind of get a fresh start and get the opportunity to behave in a different sort of way than what they may have been in their previous unit. So there was a tremendous amount of change. Now, that induces a little bit of turmoil, but part of that was that second phase that we have referred to as &quot;rebluing,&quot; which was taking the whole unit down to Numaniyah, out of their sectors, into a new environment, and going through a fairly robust training program in order to kind of give that unit a fresh start under new leadership.</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: Did those units then return to the sectors where they had been previously, or were they reassigned to different sectors?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: Some did, and some didn't. It was really more a dynamic of in Baghdad, which is where most of the units were located, as you picked up and move a unit out, somebody else had to take over that sector. So, in some cases, based on the dynamics of units coming and going and sometimes army units filling that space, sometimes other National Police units, some units return back to at least a similar if not the same sector, and others went to a completely new place.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: What is the training program that the National Police went through at Numaniyah? What did they learn that they hadn't learned before?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: It was a combination of several things. First of all, they went down and they got basic skills, how to shoot their weapons properly, just basic things that normally anybody would go through as part of their basic training before coming into a force. So they did that part of it, also a lot of policing kinds of things, things related to the rule of law, human rights, how do you do an arrest, just basic fundamental things that are associated with police operations, and then they did their first-ever collective training where they operated as units, which both has the effect of bonding the unit together, causing there to be more trust, more reliability amongst each other, and also giving them collective skills to be able to go out and do operations together in a fairly disciplined way.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: Who actually made the decision to replace the leadership within the National Police? Was that your decision, or was that Minister Bolani's decision?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: That was clearly Minister Bolani's decision, and in terms of specifically who was replaced, it was General Hussein who was the new commander of the National Police. Hussein al-Awadi definitely made a lot of the recommendations to the minister about who should be removed, and he based that judgment on many things, some of which in that first assessment phase was survey information where teams went out to each unit, inspected those units, surveyed the units, and these were both coalition teams and Iraqi teams operating independently who then got together and sort of put their results together to see did we see the same sorts of things. Surprisingly, they were very similar results, regardless of which team looked at that unit.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: Which team, you mean Iraqi or American?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: Iraqi or coalition. Both kind of came to the same conclusions in terms of which units had the weakest leadership and which units had the weakest performance.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: What motivated Minister Bolani to take these actions?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: I don't really know. I haven't really talked about his motivations on this particular aspect too much, but it fits in with this overall effort at ministerial reform that he has been pursuing since he took over responsibility for the Ministry of Interior.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: When we say ministerial reform, I can think of many things that come to mind. What are the priorities for ministerial reform within the Ministry of Interior?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: Well, I think the first priority is to create what in my words I call a &quot;culture of accountability.&quot; If you look at the history of the Ministry of Interior, unlike the Ministry of Defense which basically when the coalition came in under CPA authority sort of wiped out the Ministry of Defense and we sort of built it over again, the Ministry of Interior and the other ministries are sort of left over from the old regime. They weren't kind of the &quot;slate wiped clean and started over.&quot; So they started with the bureaucratic culture from the days of the regime. That bureaucratic culture is one where people are not held accountable. It was designed for a regime protection, not for performance. It was designed where the leaders in the Minister of Interior and the other ministries were not accountable for the rule of law. They were sort of exempt from it. So part of what the minister wanted to do was to change his culture to one where, number one, people are accountable for performance and, number two, where they are accountable for the rule of law, that they not only enforce the law, but they are accountable themselves for the rule of law. So I think that is one of those big areas of reform that he wanted to do. The second biggest area was to help the Ministry of Interior forces adjust to their role in this new environment, this new democratic society. Previously in the days of the regime, Interior forces were not the primary forces responsible for interior security of the country. That was primarily army forces, and so in this new constitution, this democratic form of government, the military's role is to defend the country from external threats, and Interior's role is to be in charge of the interior security of the country. So they have to adapt their organization and their culture to become responsible for that, and that includes changing roles and missions of their forces and changing the forces themselves to be focused on enforcing the rule of law equally and universally.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: That seems to me a very difficult task for a new or growing force in a counter-insurgency environment, especially because the Iraqi army right now is engaged in some population security measures. How did the minister and how did the police try to resolve the frictions between what their intended mission was and is and what was actually going on, on the ground as they all engaged in the counter-insurgency fight?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: Well, first of all, it is a monumental challenge. This is the kind of challenge that would be difficult for any institution to go through, especially one that is as large and growing as rapidly as the Minister of Interior, and to do it while in the middle of this level of violence in this insurgency that is going on is a huge challenge. And it has caused me to respect the way that the minister and the ministry has gone about it in a big way.<br />
I think that the minister's approach was to kind of look at what were the most important things to get a handle on first and then to kind of work simultaneously in all the critical areas to try to gain some momentum. Obviously, the National Police reform was an important part of that. The institution of an internal investigative capability called &quot;Internal Affairs&quot; was another very important part of that, and the empowering of that organization to investigate people inside the ministry, very, very important if you are going to get to this culture of accountability. The implementation of a legal code. In the military, we have this Uniform Code of Military Justice that regulates our internal judicial system. Prior to this year, the Iraqis didn't have that for interior forces, and so basically, you had the normal court system was the only way to try to hold somebody accountable which, as you know, that court system is just barely developing and is really not very robust. So the incorporation of their legal code, setting up their court system, and beginning to try people is a very important part of this ministerial reform. Then the combination of the changing of leadership and the professionalization of leadership is another very important part that the minister has I think done a pretty good job at trying to move people who were not performing well either out of the force or into positions where they were better suited and to replace them with more capable leaders and doing that in an environment that has all kinds of issues in terms of how you move people around. There are tribal issues and political issues and all kinds of other dynamics at work that we tend to ignore because in military forces, you don't see much of that. Interestingly, in police forces, even in our own country, there are county sheriffs who are elected officials, that are affiliated with political parties and all that kind of stuff, and so in Iraq, it is the same thing Local police tend to be influenced by political leadership, tribal ties, all kinds of other things that make this whole thing a lot more complicated.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: You had mentioned local police, and of course, the National Police in Iraq is only one component of the police force. Can you explain what the other component of the police force is, how the Iraqi Police differs from the National Police, and how it functions?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: Right. Well, the Iraqi Police Service is one of the components of the Ministry of Interior, besides the National Police. They have a lot of other forces. They have the border forces and ports of entry forces. They have just assumed control of the oil police and so forth. So there are a lot of different kinds of forces in interior forces. The biggest component is this Iraqi Police Service, and it has a couple major types of police. First of all, it has what are called &quot;Station Police,&quot; and these are really the majority. And these are the police that you see out in the normal police stations. Then they have the Patrol Police which are intended to be mobile vehicle-mounted patrols out looking around in an area. They have Traffic Police, you know, the guys in the white shirts and blue pants that are out there directing traffic, and then in some places, you have Highway Patrol. In Baghdad, you have a River Patrol, kind of a rivering police force that monitors the river. So you have a variety of other kind of small organizations, but it is really quite bit. It is 270,000 policemen today. The name that they are referred to for the basic policemen are called &quot;Sherta,&quot; and then they have police officers who are graduates of the Baghdad Police Academy or former military officers who have become police officers.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: Does the Minister of Interior directly control the Iraqi Police, as well as the National Police?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: Not really. Constitutionally, the way this works is that the provincial council is the one that elects whoever the provincial director of police is going to be, but like in all things in Iraq, it is not quite that simple. The Minister of Interior normally receives a list of nominees of who they would like or who they think are the best candidates to be the provincial director of police. The Minister of Interior has the authority to take any candidate that he thinks is not suited off the list or add other candidates on the list that he thinks are well suited for the job. Then it goes back to the provincial council and is supposedly voted on by the provincial council. Now, in reality, what I saw is there is a lot more give-and-take and discussion between the provincial council and the Minister of Interior as they try to figure out who is the best person in order to be that provincial director of police, and then, of course, in Baghdad, it is a little bit different. The police chief in Baghdad is not the provincial director of police. He is just the chief of the Station Police, and he is elected by the council, but then the patrol chief is appointed by the Minister of Interior and is not subordinate to the police chief. He is a separate entity, and he works directly for the national level, unlike the Patrol Police in other provinces, and so it is a little different for Baghdad because it is the capital city, it is the most populous city and so forth. So it is a little bit different, but it is really a shared responsibility and very dynamic in terms of how they choose leaders.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: Since the various provincial councils in early 2007 were in various stages of being effective or ineffective, how did that change the way the provincial directors of police were able to use their police forces and control their police forces in their provinces? Could you give us even a few examples of the variety of provincial directors and the variety of the forces on the ground?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: Well, I think you really saw the full spectrum of differences. In the case of al-Anbar, for instance, really you had no effective police force. In early 2007, you couldn't get anybody to join the police force. The provincial council wasn't interested in anything that was associated with national control forces or anything else. So you really had no effective police force out there at the beginning of 2007. Now, that rapidly changed as the dynamic in al-Anbar changed, and Sunni leadership took their roles very seriously in terms of governance and the importance of their relationship with the national government. You saw that change, and during the course of 2007, you saw the police forces in al-Anbar rapidly expand, and that, along with the improving security situation, also changed the role that the police were able to fulfill there. In other provinces, for instance in Diyala or places like that where you still had very high levels of violence, where police forces really have a very hard time operating or being effective, you didn't see that kinds of growth of the police force in terms of either size or the majority of the force or the role that they were playing. In Baghdad in 2007, you saw kind of in between those two, and that is continued growth of the police force, increased effectiveness, some controversy with the city council and dissatisfaction with the police chief, but managing to come to a suitable arrangement for him to continue to say on and do his job and that kind of business. So it just varied from province to province based on a variety of factors, not the last of which was violence, and another part was the seriousness of which the provincial councils could take on doing their duties.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: As the violence went down in some of the provinces, let us say just north, just south of Baghdad, were you able to introduce more police forces and more prepared police forces than you were able to do while the violence levels were high?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: I think overall, police forces in the country grew in general. So it wasn't necessarily associated purely with the level of violence. The place where it was most marked was clearly in al-Anbar. Whether or not there was any cause or effect there, I don't know. I think a part of it was because the decision was made politically by the leadership in al-Anbar that they were going to associate themselves with the government and they were going to participate in the political process, and therefore, they made it okay to be able to join the police force. So that is why you saw that big change in that dynamic. In other places, you saw the increase of the police forces. Even in places where there were high levels of violence like Baghdad, you saw the police force continue to grow. In areas where the violence was less, as you saw the effects of increased security operations, the change you saw was really the role that police were playing in terms of their visibility out on the street, their ability to gather information about what was going on, in some cases participating in operations and that kind of thing. So you sort of saw all of that in a variety of places around the country.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: Could you give me a sense of maybe an anecdote about how the various reforms of the National Police and of the Iraqi Police, did that generate an effect on the ground? And by the effect, I mean two things. One, did it actually reduce the sectarian behavior units, and two, did it actually contribute to security in a particular area? Could you take a district of Baghdad perhaps and talk about that?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: I think in Baghdad, you could see very clearly the -- now, I wouldn't attribute it at all to the National Police. I mean, it's a variety of factors. The National Police were an important part. Coalition forces were an important part. The Iraqi army was an important part. So they are all part of this equation. But a little less than half of Baghdad was the sector responsibility of the National Police. So the Iraqi had, I would guess about 55, 60 percent of the sectors in Baghdad. The National Police had the other portion. A year ago, a good day in Baghdad was 50 attacks, or if you broke 50, that was a pretty good day, in the forties. Today, as I was leaving the last week, the numbers of attacks in Baghdad were down to two, three, a very, very small number that most people would not have imagined in the environment we were in last year. So a portion of that credit has to go to the National Police. That clearly in those sectors that they were in, you saw marked decreases in violence. You saw decreases in sectarianism. You saw decreases in civilian deaths, murders, all those kinds of things that were associated with the violence that we were seeing last year. So a part of the credit has to go to them. When you look at -- the operation in Basra is an example. A pretty surprising performance by the National Police, the first that I found most amazing was their deployment down there, which was done with great secrecy and very little notice, and within 48 hours, they had a brigade's worth of National Police deployed down to Basra and immediately started going into operations in which they performed very well.</p>
<p>The last operation that they did up in Mosul, the National Police went to Mosul, again, very short notice, great secrecy, moved very, very quickly, in a couple days had their forces on the ground and operating up in Mosul and had such a huge impact on the population. When they got to the end of that phase where they then redeployed, the local people were unhappy with the fact that the National Police were leaving because they were so placed with their performance, in fact, had a demonstration to protest the fact the National Police were leaving, which if I had told you that a year ago, nobody would have believed that. Again, this is a predominantly Sunni area that these National Police were operating in. So it changed that dynamic quite a bit. You see lots of examples. I wouldn't oversell the direct relationship between levels of violence and that National Police unit because there are so many complex factors, but at the same time, I would tell you, you can't discount the fact that these things are occurring in sectors where the National Police are responsible.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: Do the operations in Mosul and Basra portend the National Police that will deploy largely out of Baghdad in the future?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: Clearly, the last phase. This is really a four-phase kind of reform effort that the ministry is doing. The third phase is using the Italian Carabinieri to do some training to raise the level of professionalism of the police, but the last phase is to geographically disperse the National Police, so that they are spread around the country, and the intent is that as you achieve sustainable security, that the National Police would be primarily garrisoned and then respond to crisis as necessary. So everything from an upswing in organized crime in a place that gets out of control that the local police are not able to deal with, to natural disaster, all kinds of issues where you would need additional police forces, that is kind of the long-term vision and the last phase that Minister Bolani describes in the ultimate disposition of these police forces. So it is an example. They had to deploy from Baghdad to go up to Mosul, but as a result of that operation, one of the things they are doing right now is they are training a battalion to be stationed in Mosul of National Police that will be permanently located there.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: What are the other visions that Minister Bolani has and also General Hussein has for the future of the National Police Force?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: Their ultimate view is that the National Police will be very similar to a Carabinieri-like organization, and that is that they will be equipped and trained to be able to do paramilitary operations, not quite on the level that the military can do, but very high-end operations in terms of being in high-threat environments, very dangerous environments, and very sophisticated paramilitary kinds of operations, and that includes equipping with better mobility in terms of vehicles. It includes a vision for aviation capability in order to provide reconnaissance for those kinds of forces, and it includes also being trained in everything down to counter-drug operations, which they anticipate, along with organized crime, would be a big mission for them in the future, down to being able to do local policing when necessary. For instance, if you have a local police force that becomes tremendously corrupt and needs to be replaced, their vision is the National Police unit could go in, establish normal law and order operations in a community, while they then regenerate a local police force in order to become responsible for normal law and order operations. So all of that is in their vision, which obviously is going to take a number of years to be able to do, but it is very interesting that they have such a well-defined vision for where they want to go.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: What role do coalition forces play in the functioning and performance of Iraqi Police units and National Police units?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: Well, we have a lot of roles. First of all, the organization that I led is responsible for supporting in a variety of ways, although it is less today than it has been in the past, materiel support of trying to get them the right equipment and ammunition, the kinds of things that they need to be able to operate. Although that is a decreasing responsibility we have, it still there. We also help in institutional training in terms of police advisors who are out there in their institutions, their training academies and so forth, where we provide advice for the faculty, everything from curriculum development to training Iraqi trainers to be able to give good instruction. And then there is the part with the forces on the ground, which we call the organizations that do that &quot;transition teams.&quot; These are a variety of kinds. You have police transition teams that go out that work with provincial directors of police and their headquarters, the district commanders and their headquarters, and police stations and their leadership in order to help develop that normal policing capacity. You have National Police transition teams that aren't embedded in the National Police units. So they are there with them for training, and when they go out on operations, they are also with them in order to provide connectivity into what we call the &quot;combat enablers,&quot; the things like fire support and aviation support and that kind of thing. You have border transition teams that are out with the Border Forces, and then you have port of entry transition teams that are assisting at the ports of entry in order to provide training and assistance. So we do a variety of things, and then the biggest transition team that we have is with the actual ministry itself. That is designed to provide all kinds of assistance in developing ministerial capacity, everything from how do you properly account for and distribute equipment, how do you do finances to maintain accountability of the money, to budget properly, strategic planning, to develop their annual plans and relate the budget to that, to internal affairs, the inspector general, the whole gamut of types of functions that the ministry does as an institution.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: One of the changes in 2007 that was most noticeable on the ground was the partnering of U.S. units, combat units with the Iraqi army. Yet, the police have not had the opportunity to partner with, say, U.S. police units because there aren't any in country for that kind of partnership. How effective are the transition teams as a method of professionalizing the National Police and the Iraqi Police?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: I think the idea of partnering, because you don't have exactly the same kind of capabilities, is a little bit more challenging, but some units have done it actually quite well. Multi-National Force-West, I think did a superb job of partnering with police by the creation of police transition teams from their military forces. We helped by providing international police advisors, which are civilian police professionals that we embed with those teams that go out that work with Iraqi police stations and leaders and so forth, and so in those kinds of cases, I think that we have seen good progress. You have seen the same thing in Baghdad and up north in Multi-National Division-North and so forth. So I think we have seen a lot of success. It is different because the military forces don't perfectly line up with the policing function, but one of the things that made it effective this last year is the fact that police were really doing in many places counter-insurgency policing type functions which are different from normal law and order kinds of policing functions. So, in those cases where police were doing things like checkpoints, searches, and that kind of business, those operations are things that the military does have a lot of experience doing, that they can share, and they can work together. In the normal law and order functions, not so much, and therefore, the partnership isn't nearly as close. So I think that has been a challenge. The other thing is just flat out the size of the police force. Again, 460,000 police or so of various types in the country, when you look at the amount of forces you can dedicate to do that kind of partnering, there are less than 200,000 military forces. So, obviously, if you are dealing with a smaller force, partnering works better than this very large and diverse force, but I think the coalition forces overall have done a pretty good job of adapting to try to establish those relationships and to be able to operate together. The other interesting dynamic that has happened is not just the coalition partnering with Iraqi police. It is the Iraqi police partnering with the Iraqi army, which has been a very interesting development, to say the least.</p>
<p>When I was on my first tour in 2004, it was not normal to have Iraqi police and Iraqi army do anything together. In fact, there was tremendous animosity between those forces. Now, all those frictions aren't gone today, but what we have seen is because of joint security stations where you have Iraqi police, Iraqi army, and coalition forces all operating together out of a single place, doing joint operations and that kind of business, the level of cooperation has increased markedly. I went down to Basra, and part of the business of the Basra operations is they replaced the director of police with a new officer, and so I was talking to him. He was on his second day on the job, and we were having this discussion. I thought that I was going to propose something to him that would be a little unusual, but maybe I could edge him in that direction. I said, &quot;You know, in Baghdad, we had this very successful joint effort where we had these joint security stations that had both Baghdad police, Iraqi army, coalition forces together, and that it really seemed to work out well, and that is something you might want to consider,&quot; and he said, &quot;Well, yeah, that's a really good idea.&quot; I talked to the army commander about that yesterday, which was his first day on the job, and we have agreed we are going to establish joint security station, and the other thing we are going to do is we are going to eliminate all checkpoints that are individual checkpoints, that every checkpoint in the city is going to be a joint checkpoint with both army and police there because we are going to end this animosity back and forth saying, &quot;Hey, my checkpoint was doing his job, but that other guy's checkpoint wasn't doing his job,&quot; and that was what the problem was. So he was already at the far head of me in terms of trying to cooperate with the army. So I think all of that has combined together to really change the dynamic of how the police forces are functioning.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: How important will the coalition be to the development of the police forces over the next year, two years, three years? Is that coalition presence still necessary given the level of performance that we have seen with the National Police and the Iraqi Police?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: I think probably yes. The reason is because, again, it goes back to what we said before about how monumental a challenge this is. The first thing we should keep in mind is that although the security and situation has improved markedly -- and a part of that credit goes to a variety of other things, political, progress, the capability of the Iraqi security forces improving, et cetera, et cetera, but we shouldn't forget that 148,000 troops are there as part of this whole situation, and obviously, that has to have a security effect. Likewise, we shouldn't overestimate the capability of the forces or the challenge of continuing to develop them or the determination of a lot of people to not let this be successful. So it is still a struggle that is going on, although the situation has improved tremendously. It is still a struggle, and the enemies to this idea of having a democratic regime in place in this country, they are still going to oppose it very strongly in my view. So I think the struggle will continue while these forces continue to mature. The second part is the amount of institutional change that we are talking about, changing the institutions of the security forces from ones that were designed to exist in a dictatorial regime to ones that support democratic form of government. That change is immense. The change inside the Ministry of Interior to this culture of accountability is a huge thing that is going to take a long time to achieve. Other things are things like just something as simple as the automation of systems. While these forces have grown, one of the challenges is not just organizational and design, but they have all manual systems that work just fine when there were 60,000 Iraqi police service guys before we came, but when yo have 270,000, these manual systems just don't work. And sometimes we think that something as simple as automation should be a matter of, well, look, we will just give them computers and do some training, and we will be done with it, and we forget the fact that our own organizations, it took us a long time to automate. In fact, we still have systems that aren't automated even in what you could arguably say is the most technologically advanced society on the earth. So all of these things are going to take some time, and because it is all new, it is very difficult for the Iraqis to do it on their own. They don't have any experience about what should police forces do in a democratic society. What should police forces do during an election? Are there limits on what political participation police forces ought to have? They just have no experience at it. So they are going to have to learn their way through this, and with some continued assistance, the likelihood of being successful increases, and left on their own, they might figure it out, but the odds and the amount of time that it will take are just different than if they have continued assistance, I think.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: The provincial elections are, of course, one of the hallmark events of 2008 or possibly January 2009.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: Right.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: To what extent do you think that the Iraqi police forces generally, both the National Police and the Iraqi Police, are expecting to take responsibility for securing the elections, particularly within cities, and to what extent are they involved in protecting parties or political interests during those elections?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: Well, they are very clearly taking their responsibility seriously. The leader of the national effort to secure the elections is Deputy Minister Ayden who is the Deputy Minister for Forces for the Ministry of Interior. He clearly is in the lead. The army is in a supporting role for the elections. They have already issued their plans to the provincial directors of police. They know how they are going to secure the polling stations and so forth, and so they are doing the work to prepare for that. They are already in the voter registration phase, and the police are playing an active role in helping to secure the polling sites. In fact, just before I left, we had the transition of a province to provincial Iraqi control, and one of the problems was that the police didn't cover down on some of the polling stations because they had this big security challenge of making sure that the ceremony for the provincial transition responsibility was secure, and so they ended up with a registration station not being secured that day by the police. So that got reported and caused them to make some corrections the next day. So they are really taking the responsibility seriously. They have experience doing this. Sometimes I have to remind my friends that the Iraqis have gotten a go at the business of securing elections now, several times in the past. It is always a challenge. It is a monumental effort, but the police are I think taking their responsibility seriously. They are performing well so far. They have very good plans for how they are going to secure the election on election day, and I think they are going to be successful.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: Will the coalition play a role in helping the police make the transition from a counter-insurgency force to a rule-of-law force? Will the coalition participate in teaching forensics skills, for example, to the police and integrating that process into the legal process within Iraq?</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: We are very active in doing all those things. To start with, in terms of the transition to the rule of law, the interesting thing that happened about four months ago was we got a call from Multi-National Force-West that said, &quot;Well, here in Ramadi, in Fallujah, our police departments are pretty well skilled on their counter-insurgency tasks, but they really don't know much about enforcing the law. So we need to have some help in terms of training to do that.&quot; So we worked in partnership with the Ministry of Interior to develop a mobile training team and developed some training aids that we could hand out to Iraqi police and went out and conducted training on the basics of what does the law say and what is your role in enforcing the rule of law, and some of it was very, very simplistic, how do you get an arrest warrant, how do you get a search warrant, what is the mechanic that you go through in order to do these basic legal functions. So we went out there with the Iraqi partners, and we did some training for those forces up in Kirkuk where there are no longer any military forces in the city, the same sort of thing.<br />
So it won't be one day everything changes, but kind of spot by spot, you will see some of these changes I think. So, as this demand grows for learning about those things, obviously we are helping. Part of our help is in helping Iraqis become trained, so they can do this without us. So that is why it is a joint effort at this stage. As time goes on, we anticipate it will be an Iraqi effort to go out and do those kinds of things. In addition, we are working with them on institutional training, and that is, right now they go to training to become an officer at the Baghdad Police College, and that is the last training they ever have. So we are helping them develop more advanced training courses for more senior folks, people at the captain level, at the colonel level and so forth in order to professionalize their force in these rule-of-law issues. So we will see this coming year, those will be implemented, and I think you will see significant changes there. In terms of forensics, we are actively helping in partnership with some other people. The UK CIFPOL [ph] are our primary partners in doing that, but developing the forensics capability is part of the equation. The other part is in educating the judiciary in order for judges to understand what kind of forensics evidence is there, how reliable is it, and why should I use this in a court of law. Interestingly, the tradition in Iraq, like in a lot of the countries in the region, is that they have a confessional-based judicial system, and that is, in court there are only a couple of things that sort of count. One is direct eyewitness accounts of a crime, and the other is the confession of the criminal, and those two things drive this confessional-based system which is, in my mind, unhealthy in any society, but especially in democratic society. The reason it is unhealthy is because people go to great lengths to include all kinds of bad behavior in order to get a confession. So, if you are going to take that off the table as being a primary motivator at the abuse of human rights, then you have to have some other method to take people to court and to prove their guilt. So this business of forensics evidence being used in court is extremely important if you are going to graduate to an evidentiary-based judicial system that promotes human rights and tries to make sure that people are treated fairly by their police forces.</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: You have answered so many of my questions. I wanted to ask you whether there are other comments or remarks that you would like to make about the time that you spent with CPATT.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: Well, just I have been really honored to serve with the men and women of CPATT. It is a very interesting organization. It is a coalition organization. So we have folks from different countries, military, civilian, contractors, all kinds of people who work together, and then we do it in partnership with a lot of other people, international organizations like the United Kingdom DIFID organization, the EU JUSLEX [ph], I mean all kinds of people that are participating in trying to make the interior forces effective and establish the rule of law in a stable, secure environment in Iraq. So it is a real honor to work with them. It was an honor to be there during this period of huge change where clearly we had gone through an extreme escalation of violence, and it changes not only in the amount of violence, but the type of violence, where sectarian violence was becoming so dominant in the country, bringing it to really what I think was on the brink of a civil war, and then during the time that I was there to watch that change, to where we have a situation today where clearly levels of violence are much higher than what we would want because we want there to be no violence, but it has changed to a degree that I think most people would find were not imaginable a year ago. If you talked to people back then about, well, what do you think we can really achieve with the increase in forces and the change in the strategy and all the other kinds of things that were going on last year and somebody said I think we can have a 50-percent reduction of violence, most people would say, well, that is pretty optimistic. And to have seen no matter how you count it as being something that far exceeds that, 80 percent or something, it is monumental change, so the levels of violence, but also the changing and the maturing of institutions. You have seen a new increased confidence by the Iraqis. You have seen that reflected in the political dynamics that are going on, and you see it in the operations of their security forces.</p>
<p>The Basra operation, which frankly was a surprise to many of us, the fact that they did it so rapidly and achieved the results that they did in such a short time, where in Basra today it is a completely different city than what it was just a few months ago, and the same thing in Mosul and Amara and Baghdad, no one would have imagined the Iraqis going into Sadr City and changing the dynamic completely there just in a matter of months. So all of those kinds of changes that have occurred have truly been monumental, but the other thing is we should always caution ourselves that we shouldn't get carried away by the euphoria that goes with achieving remarkable things, and that is, it is still going to be a very difficult struggle for some time to come. Some of that struggle is based on the fact that this country has been traumatized not only by the years of the regime, but by the violence over the last several years, and then on top of that, you have some neighboring countries who are not thrilled with seeing a modern, prosperous, democratic society in the heart of the region there, and so they are going to do things that try to oppose progress. So it is going to continue to be a little bit of a challenge and a difficult struggle, but I think that if you look at it, there is good cause for optimism, as long as we temper it with keeping in mind that these kinds of environments, especially in this region, are just challenging places.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>DR. KAGAN</u>: General Mike Jones, thank you so much for joining the Institute for the Study of War today to talk about your experience, and thank you most of all for all that you have done at CPATT over the past year. Thank you for everything.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p><u>MG JONES</u>: Kim, thanks very much. It is a pleasure to be with you.</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p>&nbsp;</p>
<p style="text-align: center;">Prepared by: MALLOY TRANSCRIPTION SERVICE 7040 31st Street, N.W. Washington, D.C. 20015 (202) 362-6622</p>

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