Saturday, June 21, 2008

Good News from Iraq: 21 Jun 2008

From MNF-I, Civil Affairs Teams, U.S. Marines Improve Fallujah Infrastructure.

FALLUJAH — 3rd Battalion, 6th Marines, augmented by Civil Affairs teams, are continuously working with Fallujah City Council members, local tribal leaders and local citizens to carry out projects in an effort to improve the city’s infrastructure.

Civil Affairs and Army Corps of Engineers leaders met with the city council’s director generals recently, to talk about projects that will provide key services throughout the city, such as improving the water distribution systems.

The city is now in the planning stages of establishing a new water distribution network. 3rd Battalion, 6th Marines recently approved a project to purchase needed parts for a water treatment facility, which will service the majority of Fallujah. Right now, the facilities have inoperable pumps and other parts that are in a state of disrepair. The installation of new pumps and filters at the Azerghia water treatment facility will bring the facility back to its previous prewar output capacity.

“The initiative to solve all water problems for Fallujah lies in the pipe network,” said Chief Warrant Officer 2 Shane Duhe, Civil Affairs Team 5 team leader. “When the pipe network works properly, the water treatment plants already established along the Euphrates River will certainly be able to support all of the city’s needs.”

Embedded Provincial Reconstruction Teams introduced reverse-engineering concepts to the directors that are currently being developed. Reverse engineering concepts that the Army Corps of Engineers use will spare the expense of rebuilding existing facilities, thus saving money and labor time.

Another high priority on the Fallujah City Council’s list is the Telecommunications Headquarters in the city. Up to 45,000 citizens will benefit from having land line telephone service at their disposal.

“Over the past five years, many services have been degraded,” Duhe said. “Phone services are important to all citizens in Fallujah because they need to be able to call emergency services and police hotlines. This has a direct impact on local security.”

Civil Affairs teams continue to work on projects to facilitate the reconstruction of basic needs such as water, sewage and electricity. Their mission is to assist in transition by working with the local Iraqi government to build strong infrastructure for Fallujah.