Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Good News from Iraq: 11 Dec 2007

From MNF-I, Concerned Local Citizen’s tip leads Coalition Forces to IED cache.

BAGHDAD – A tip from a member of the Jamia Concerned Local Citizens’ security force led Coalition Forces to a cache of munitions, improvised explosive devices and IED-making materials in the Jamia neighborhood of Baghdad Dec. 5.

The member of the CLC noticed an unusual blanket covering possible weapons in the driveway of a home the day prior while playing soccer, and gave this information to Coalition Forces at Joint Security Station Bonzai.

Responding to the information, Soldiers from Company B, 1st Battalion, 64th Armor Regiment followed the CLC to the location, where they found anti-tank mines, mortar and artillery rounds, explosive materials, IED-initiating systems, and two complete IEDs ready for emplacement. This was the first large cache found in the neighborhood in the past several weeks.

The tip from the CLC is the first of its kind from the security force that began operations less than two weeks ago.

“Without this concerned citizen coming forward and giving us the information about suspicious activity in his neighborhood, we might not have located this cache before its contents were used to attack Coalition or Iraqi Forces,” said 1st Lt. Mike Kelly, a platoon leader for Company B, 1-64th AR.

The Jamia CLC security force is in the early stages of its formation, and is currently undergoing on-the-job training with Co. B, and the 3rd Battalion, 5th Brigade, 6th Iraqi Army Division.

Once the force is certified by Iraqi Army leadership as trained, they will begin conducting 24-hour joint operations with the Iraqi Army at traffic control points throughout the Jamia neighborhood.

“We expect more tips like this to come in from CLCs once they begin full-time operations,” Kelly said. “That should lead to a significant increase in the security of the neighborhood.”