Saturday, May 12, 2007

Good News from Iraq: 12 May 2007

From The Fourth Rail, Anbar Rising.

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Ramadi, AO Denver on the rise

The political and security developments have had a dramatic impact on the situation in Anbar. The success in Ramadi, which used to be the most deadly city in Iraq, has been well documented. Attacks, which averaged 25 a day last summer, and spiked to as much as 50 a day according to a U.S. military intelligence source, have been reduced to 4 per day. In AO Denver, the expanse of Anbar from Hit westward to Husaybah on the border, the entire region is averaging 5 attacks per day. “The quality of these attacks are generally poor,” said Colonel Koenig.

The U.S. and Iraqi militaries are finding more IEDs that are being detonated against their forces. While weapons caches are being discovered, the security forces are finding few new caches, indicating the insurgency doesn't have the time or capacity to restock or create new ones.

Haditha, once one of the most violent towns in the Euphrates River Valley, is essentially quiet. The Souks are now open in Ramadi. The markets in Hit and Husaybah, which sits directly on the Syrian border and once was declared an Islamic State by al Qaeda, are thriving. "I am tempted to take off my vest & walk around," the open market of Hit and Husaybah, said Col [John A.] Koenig, Koenig [(USMC), the head of the II Marine Expeditionary Force G-5 (Governance and Economics)]. The government in Husaybah has been so effective that the CMOC [Civil Military Operations Center], which provided services to the civilians, has been closed. "We can sit on the roof in Ramadi and watch the sunset without fear of snipers," said Major Jeffery Pool, the lead Public Affairs Officer for Multinational Forces West.

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