Friday, February 22, 2008

Good News from Iraq: 22 Feb 2008

From MNF-I, Sons of Iraq tip lead to weapons cache in Jabr al Ansari.

FORWARD OPERATING BASE HAMMER, Iraq – Acting on information provided by the Sons of Iraq, soldiers assigned to Troop C, 3rd Squadron, 1st Cavalry Regiment, confiscated a weapons cache in Jabr al Ansari, a small village southeast of Baghdad, Feb. 19.

The cache contained 21 122mm Russian projectiles and three 130mm Russian projectiles. The munitions were buried approximately three feet deep in a suspect’s backyardt. The suspect was detained and brought back to Combat Outpost Cashe for questioning.

“Every time the Sons of Iraq bring in or lead us to ordnance, it saves the lives of innocent Iraqis, as well as the lives of Iraqi and Coalition forces,” said Command Sgt. Maj. Dan Huell, from Miami, command sergeant major of 3-1st Cav. Regt. “This act signifies that most Iraqis have rejected violence and are on the side of peace.”

Lt. Col. John Kolasheski, from Louden, Tenn., commander of 3-1 Cav. Regt., believes his troops’ effectiveness operating in the Jisr Diyala area is due to the rapport developed with their Iraqi neighbors.

“This cache find serves as another example of how our soldiers are winning the trust and confidence of the population,” Kolasheski said. “By denying terrorists the use of these dangerous munitions, we collectively make Jisr Diyala and the surrounding areas a safer place for the people of the region. The Sons of Iraq continue to show their effectiveness in thickening our lines.”

The SOI have played a significant role in most of 3-1 Cav. Regt.’s recent cache finds by providing information.

“The Sons of Iraq continue to demonstrate the effectiveness of local security by decreasing accelerants and extremist activities in our area of operations,” said 1st Lt. Jamel Reese, a platoon leader in Headquarters Troop, 3-1 Cav. Regt.

The cache was destroyed by the 789th Ordnance Company, from Ft. Benning, Ga., currently attached to the 3rd Heavy Brigade Combat Team.

The 3-1 Cav. Regt. is assigned to the 3rd HBCT, 3rd Infantry Division, from Fort Benning, Ga., and has been deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom since March.