Archive for June 3rd, 2008

Michael Yon, the former green beret turned independent war correspondent, makes this prediction based upon his experience in Iraq and the evidence that continuing and increasing operations of the Iraq government and army as well as our own forces are rapidly turning the tide against the enemy.

His book, Moment of Truth in Iraq, paves the way for this view by laying out his experiences while embedded with our troops over the past several years.  Drawing upon that background and viewing the current progress he states:

Now the truth is that Iraq is showing real progress on many fronts:  Al Qaeda is being defeated and violence is down and continuing to decrease.  As a result, the militias have lost their reason for existence and are getting beaten back or co-opted.  Shia, Sunni and Kurds are coming together — although with various stresses — under the national government.  If progress continues at this rate, it is very possible that before 2008 is out, we can finally say “the war has ended.”

Read the whole thing here.

Let’s not get too cocky just yet, but if Al Qaeda and their allies who want to destabilize Iraq are unable to mount any major offensives before the U.S. election in November then the odds are that they are done.

I’m hoping and praying that Michael is correct, but I long ago quit counting my chickens before they hatch.

Troop Scoop 6/3/2008

Troop Scoop

Posted: 03 Jun 2008 11:23 AM CDT

Dear Interested Readers,
Many successful ops, and key criminals caught; Op Charge of the Knights makes Basra safer; Iraqi Army and Coalition Forces make the city of Bukais safer; the Jamilla Market in Sadr City thriving; and IA and Iraqi NP combine efforts to make Basra safer.  Large weapons caches seized.

Multi-National Corps – Iraq
Public Affairs Office, Camp Victory
APO AE 09342

June 3, 2008

MND-B Soldiers capture key criminal

BAGHDAD – Soldiers from 14th Inf Regt, 25th ID, captured the #2 key criminal of the 2nd Stryker BCT, during ops in the Tarmiyahv area.
The criminal is the suspected head of an IED manufacturing and emplacing cell that operated near Taji and is responsible for the deaths of numerous Iraqi civilians and members of the Iraqi SF.  He is also linked to the bombing destruction of the Taji Bridge over the Grand Canal that killed several and wounded more Iraqi civilians.


Iraqi SF lead Operation Charge of the Knights in Abu Al Khasib

BASRA – Op Charge of the Knights, lead by IA Soldiers and Iraqi NP continued searching and clearing ops in Abu Al Khasib of Basra, May 31.
The National IP detained a suspect and discovered a cache of 52 AK-47 assault rifles and a sub-machine gun.
CF from the U.S. Marine Corps and UK MiTTs remain with the IA in a supporting role to enable assets, if necessary.
The op, which began March 25 in Basra, continues to bring the surrounding area to normalcy with infrastructure support missions focusing on canal clearing ops, substation repair and construction, and road repairs.


Commanders from the IA and the Iraqi NP discuss ongoing ops. The 2 services combined efforts in the latest phase to clear criminal elements from the areas around the city of Basra.


Iraqi Army, Coalition forces conduct clearing operation

TIKRIT – Btry C, Fires Sqdrn, 2nd Stryker Cav Regt, along with Iraqi Soldiers took part in a clearing op outside of COP Zaganiyah in the densely packed palm groves, May 28.
IA Soldiers, along with members of the SoI from 3 different Iraqi towns took part in the palm grove clearing op, said Capt. Charles Knoll, Btry C. “The city of Bukais used to be an AQI stronghold in northern Iraq,” said 1st Sgt. Richard Perez.  “The AQI were using their position to terrorize and intimidate the innocent people who lived in the city,” said Perez.
IA, SOI and CF were able to push the AQI presence out of the city, said Knoll. The AQI took up sanctuary in the palm groves that surround the city. The thick foliage provided an ideal location for the AQI to hide weapons caches and conduct secret ops, according to Perez.
“The Iraqis are taking the lead on this op,” said Knoll. They are going to be the tip of the spear on this op. The American forces are here in a purely supportive role.”
Two plts from the Fires Bde were stationed in blocking positions around the palm groves, isolating the objective, as the Iraqi forces swept through May 28, said Staff Sgt. Ronis Gutierrez, plt sgt.
In the course of the op, 3 AQI were killed, said Gutierrez. More than 46 mortars were found in various weapons caches throughout the palm grove.
“The Iraqis really took the fight to the AQI here today,” said Knoll. “The IA is beginning to develop their own plans and conduct their own missions independent of CF.”  According to the unit, it is a good indicator of their willingness to take on the broader responsibility of providing security for their own people.
“The IA Soldiers are very professional, and they are very eager to take their country back from the AQI and other insurgent groups,” said Perez.


An IA Soldier unloads and collects mortar rounds.


Iraqi children play as Iraqi citizens pass freely outside of their homes near the palm groves. This is a sign that a basic level of normalcy is reappearing.


Iraqi Security Forces detain 49 suspects in Hit

HIT – Iraqi SF conducted joint raids in the vicinity of Hit today detaining 49 suspects for possible connections with a deadly suicide VBIED attack near the city’s govt complex Saturday evening.
Elements of the 7th IA Div, Hit IP and Provincial SF planned and executed the joint raids, which resulted in the roundup of suspects for questioning at an IP HQ in Hit.


MND-B Soldiers detain suspected criminal

FOB FALCON –  “Raiders” Soldiers from Co C, 2nd Bn, 4th Inf Regt attached to 1st BCT, 4th ID detained a suspected criminal in the Rashid district of southern Baghdad, May 31.  He is allegedly connected with numerous murders of Iraqi citizens in 2007, weapons smuggling and other criminal activity.
“During the last 45-days, Raider Soldiers detained more than 200 criminals and seized over 100 weapons and munitions caches to reduce criminal activity in the Rashid district,” said Maj. Dave Olson, 1st BCT Spokesman.


Iraqi, MND-B Soldiers detain multiple criminal suspects, discover large cache

BAGHDAD –  May 31, at approx. 1 p.m., Soldiers from 2nd Bn 4th Inf Regt, 1st BCT, 4th ID detained a man in West Rashid who is suspected of being associated with several criminal groups.  The suspected criminal is an alleged weapons smuggler, facilitator and IED maker.
IA Soldiers with support from Soldiers of the 2nd BCT, 101st Abn Div arrested 2 men suspected for their criminal activity in the Al-Mansour district at approx. 1:20 p.m.
At approx. 1:30 p.m., Soldiers from HHC, 1st Bn, 14th Inf Regt, 2nd Stryker BCT, 25th ID detained 2 alleged AQI members northwest of Baghdad.
Another suspect was detained in the Adamiyah district by Soldiers from the 108th MP Co, 18th MP Bde.  The suspected criminal is alleged to be involved in EFP attacks on CF.
At approx. 7 p.m., Soldiers from 7th Sqdrn, 10th Cav Regt, 1st BCT, 4th ID, uncovered a cache during a
weapons search op in the East Rashid District of Baghdad, consisting of 4 anti-tank grenades, 3 RPGs, 200 7.62 mm rounds, 2 107 mm rockets, a claymore mine, 13 86 mm mortars, 5 60 mm mortars and 2 57 mm surface-to-air rockets.


ISOF capture suspected Special Groups criminal in Baghdad

BAGHDAD –  May 31, the ISOF conducted an op to capture an individual suspected of multiple indirect-fire attacks on a CF base in Abu Tshir, and of displacing Iraqi families from their homes. He also reportedly acts as a sniper for his group.
One additional suspect was detained.


MNC-I CG visits Jamilla Market in Sadr City


Lt. Gen. Lloyd J. Austin III, comm. gen., MNC, talks with a local shop owner at the Jamilla Market in Sadr City May 28. When Austin visited Sadr City 3 weeks ago, the markets were empty. Now, business is thriving and the shop owners’ biggest concern is not security, but electricity.


Lt. Gen. Lloyd J. Austin III looks at weapons confiscated in Sadr City.


Lt. Gen. Lloyd J. Austin III, talks with Lt. Col. Michael F. Pappal, cmdr., 1st CAB, 68th Armor, 2nd BCT, 4th ID (center) and Col. John H. Hort, cmdr, 2nd BCT, 4th ID, (right).


The Suffolk Detachment of the Marine Corps League will hold their 3rd Annual 5K Run/Walk to benefit Long Island Wounded Warrior programs.

Who: Suffolk Detachment Marine Corps League
What: 9-11 Run/Walk
Where: Blydenburgh Suffolk County Park, Veterans Memorial Highway, Hauppauge, NY

When: Saturday, September 6, 2008, 9am
Registration: Preregistration online at

  • Preregistration – $15/Ages 20 and up,  $10/Ages 19 and below.
  • Day of Race – $25/Ages 20 and up,  $25/Ages 19 and below.

Make checks payable to:  Marine Corps League
Mail to:  Marine Corps League 30 Fresh Pond Road, Fort Salonga, N.Y. 11768
Contact Email:

All pre-registered runners and walkers by August 31, 2008, will receive either:

  • Quality Marine Corps Iwo Jima Memorial over the World Trade Center (new color) T-shirt
  • Marine Corps PFT shirt

Late registrations (after August 31st) and day of the run registration may receive shirts while supplies last.

Race Awards :  (All race awards will be mailed to the winners)

Top Three Male & Top Three Female Overall
Top Three Masters Male & Top Three Masters Female
Top Male & Female in each of the Following Divisions
12 & Under, 13 to 14, 15 to 16, 17 to 18, 19 to 20, 21 to 24, 25 to 29,
30 to 34, 35 to 39, 40 to 44, 45 to 49, 50 to 54, 55 to 59, 60 to 64,
65 to 69, 70 to 74, 75 to 79, 80 to 84 & Over 85

Raffle Prizes:

  • One winner $200,
  • Two winners $100.00,
  • Four winners will each receive four take home gourmet Marine Corps meals just like your Marines are eating in Iraq.


Waiver: In consideration of the acceptance of my entry. I, the undersigned do hereby waive and release and for ever discharge and all rights and claims for damages which I may hereafter accrue to me while traveling to and from or participating in the Marine Corps 911 Run/Walk, against the Marine Corps League, County of Suffolk and their respective police and emergency agencies, agents, representatives or successors along with any sponsors supports and volunteers of said event, as a result of my participation in said Marine Corps 911 Run/Walk. I hereby attest and verify that I have full knowledge of the risks involved in participating in this event and I’m physically fit and sufficiently trained to participate. The application warrants that a licensed medical doctor has verified my physical condition.

I have read the above statement, I understand and my signature below confirms its full acceptance.

Name____________________________________ Address________________________________

Town_________________________ State_____________ Zip___________

Age (as of 09 September 07__________ Sex: Female_____ Male______ Shirt size ___________

Signature___________________ Date:_____________e-mail address________________________

On line registration:

Join Rolling Thunder NY 5 and veterans from the Stratton V.A. Hospital for a night at the ballgame!
The Valley Cats v. The Oneonta Tigers.
Meet up at the Veteran’s Hospital at 4pm for the ride to “Big Joe” the Joseph Bruno stadium on the campus of Hudson Valley Community College in Troy, NY.
Contact Suzi or Ron at the numbers below for information on discounted ticket prices for attendees.

What: Vet Night at the Joe
Where: Albany/Troy

When: Sunday, June 22, 2008, 4pm to ??
Tickets: Veterans who show their ID and enter with Rolling Thunder go for FREE!  All Others will have a discounted group rate (still awaiting details).

  • Suzi 518-788-1067
  • Ron 518-542-9834

Refreshment Prices:

  • Slice of pizza and a drink $3.50
  • Hotdog, Chips and a drink $4.50
  • Hamburger, Chips and a drink $5.50