Wednesday, August 31, 2005


Behind The Press Veil In Iraq

Everytime I read about what is happening in Iraq from people there, instead of reporters in hotels in Bahgdad, sounds like things are going just fine. Two great reports in the last few days. One from Dadmanly and one from Major K, both about the development of the Iraqi Army. Dadmanly even manages to inject a little humor
The CG said they were learning mutual respect as well. When the Americans first came, Officers and superiors, if someone stepped in the room, might yell at them harshly. They see the American Officers and Enlisted treat each other without yelling, or rudeness. The CG identified this change as an example of learning democracy. The General said he still can?t accept that he should consider a Command Sergeant Major the equal of Officers, and our CSM assured him that whoever told him he needed to was not telling him the truth. (Some of us weren?t so sure how he meant that.)
Major K points out that the training process requires patience
There are plenty of bugs to be worked out, but they are doing better than when we started two days ago. We had a visit yesterday from a British Lieutenant Colonel who was getting ready to do the same thing with the Iraqi 10th Division south of here. There are many disadvantages and frustrations in being the first ones to do this for the first division. I hope he will benefit from our errors and snafus. "Rome was not built in a day..."
All sounds good to me -- I've never trained an army, but I have trained people in dictatorial countries how to do business, it's never easy but it's always rewarding, and in the end, American's success at almost everything is the only motivator you really need to train them. In the end, they want what we have so they'll do what it takes.


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