Sunday, December 30, 2007

Good News from Iraq: 30 Dec 2007

From MNF-I, Iraqi Military Academy Graduates 229 New Officers, 44 Pilot Candidates.

RUSTAMIYAH — The Iraqi Military Academy at Rustamiyah graduated 229 newly commissioned officers for the Iraqi Army and Iraqi Air Force, Dec. 29.

This class is the second group to attend the one year instruction, which is broken into three blocks: junior, intermediate and senior. Each block lasts approximately 15 weeks. The first block introduces the cadets to basic officer training and teaches them to work as a team. The next 15 weeks are spent learning academics and history. The final 15 week block of instruction is based around exercises and exams.

“I’m very proud of all of them,” said U.S. Air Force Capt. Ryan Vetter, an instructor at the academy and a member of the Coalition Air Force Transition Team. “They came in very excited and energized with actually being given the opportunity to learn.”

Out of the 229 graduates, 44 have been selected as pilot candidates and are slotted to go into the Iraqi Air Force. These pilot candidates will return to the academy for English language training before being sent to Kirkuk Air Base for flight school.