Back to Iraq Journal Entry # 6 - Kate Norley

Posted: Aug 13, 2008 12:27 PM

While security continues to be a focus of priority across Iraq, a substantial shift has occurred in the agenda of doing so. Whereas coalition forces were subject to swinging from modes of both attack, and defense, part in effort to better counter the strategic styles of terrorist warfare, we now operate with greater depth. 2nd Platoon showed me just that as the sun rose this morning. Armed with intelligence gathered from locals, and our own intuitions of notable area suspects, we patrolled through Bennezaid seeking out men of ‘military age.’ Not surprisingly, there were none to be found, so onward we went with raiding several homes. I am proud to say that not only was I too, able to lend a sharp eye in uncovering contraband (a hidden letter from Al Qaida to be specific), but how adept those I embed with are! These professionals know the drill. They know what should be where and why. They know both from past experiences, and also from the tips of surrounding Iraqis no longer willing to jeopardize themselves in account of their neighbors.  These established relationships prove to be fundamental in winning the war. After uncovering fake ID’s, hidden pistols and AK-47’s, potential detonators for IED’S as well as wired battery packs ready to be packed with C4 explosive material, we packed up and headed home. This may not have been a big hit on a large cache, but it’s shakedowns like these that continue to quietly remove the weapons and their owners from the street. Just another typical day on the job…

Making it happen,