We Don’t Commute to Work Anymore
I just finished participating in a bloggers’ roundtable with Major General Rick Lynch, Commanding General Multi-National Division – Center. Key phrase from General Lynch for me:
We don’t commute to work anymore.
In his AO we have established 53 patrol bases, taking and holding ground. From May, attacks on our troops in the region have gone from 25 per day to 5 per day, with only one generally being effective. Civilian losses have dropped by 75%
The current op, Marne Thunderbolt, is targeting the southern part of the area named Arab Jabour. The north is much more secured but the south is lacking in police and military presence, and is an AQ sanctuary.
In MND-C there are about 31,000 CLC’s, concerned local citizens, manning about 1,400 checkpoints. They are proving effective on their own, having killed or captured 500 terrorists so far.
The CLC’s are a way of “thickening the lines”. General Lynch’s people pay each CLC about $300 a month, 75% of the base pay of an Iraqi police officer. The money is funneled through the local shiek, who has funding to purchase supplies. In MND-C, the United States does not provide ammo or weapons to the CLC’s. We do provide uniforms, communications equipment, vehicles, etc. We also work with them on the checkpoint construction and positioning.
Lynch currently has only one Iraqi Army battalion in Arab Jabour, and would like an additional seven. He has received promises from the Iraqi military that more support will be forthcoming.
There are two police brigades in his AO. The one in the north is very effective. The one stationed out of Salman Pak is less so. It is a Shia force stationed in a Sunni community. General Lynch hopes to improve on that situation.
Much of his time is spent, not on combat planning, but on economic ops. The biggest need in the region is jobs. Lynch has seven projects that he is focusing on. His analogy was the “starfish principle”, the old story of the youngster tossing starfish back into the sea one at a time. It may not affect the mass of starfish but it affects the one that is saved. He has “seven starfish”.
Entire interview with all blogger questions [PDF file]
Table of contents for Bloggers' Roundtable
- We Don’t Commute to Work Anymore
- Terror Investors Might Want to Look Elsewhere
- I Hear It’s Safe
- In Our Area the Taliban Are Paying More a Month
- Iraqi Police Progress
- Sept. 11 Conspirators Going to Trial
- Continued Courage and Committment
- The Year of Opportunity – 2008
- Competent, Capable, Effective Leadership
- Afghan Army Acts: Decisive, Overwhelming
- Iraqi Military Medical Services
- Dallas Reporting: Aid Mission to Georgia
- Military Integration Into NIMS
- Status Report From the Afghan South
- Status Report From the Afghan East
- Fourth Fleet Is About Partnerships
- Iraqi Police Primer
- Sons of Iraq Status Update
- Army Apologizes
- We Are Here!
- Yar! There Be Pirates!
- Cobra Gold 2009
- Our Best: Sergeant First Class Helen Gillespie
- Africa Partnership Station Comes to E Africa
- Building the Rule of Law in Afghanistan
- Sons of Iraq and the Iraqi Budget
- Air Force Combat Camera – Focus on the Fight
- Afghan Update for July 22, 2009
- The Army Goal: 1.5 Gigawatts of Renewable Energy
- Withdrawing from Iraq – some perspective
- Iraqi security update April 22 2010
- 2012 Federal Budget for Defense
- Pacific Command and the Pacific
- Air Force high flyers mark 100th anniversary
This entry was posted on Monday, January 14th, 2008 at 10:51 am and is filed under War on Terror, Iraq, Original writing, Original writing, Reporting, War on Terror. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.