• This is a political forum that is non-biased/non-partisan and treats every person's position on topics equally. This debate forum is not aligned to any political party. In today's politics, many ideas are split between and even within all the political parties. Often we find ourselves agreeing on one platform but some topics break our mold. We are here to discuss them in a civil political debate. If this is your first visit to our political forums, be sure to check out the RULES. Registering for debate politics is necessary before posting. Register today to participate - it's free!
  • Welcome to our archives. No new posts are allowed here.

Progress in Fallujah

oldreliable67

DP Veteran
Joined
Oct 3, 2005
Messages
4,641
Reaction score
1,102
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Undisclosed
Very few are unaware of the battles that have taken place in Fallujah. The torture rooms, weapons caches and bomb factories found there attested to its reputation as an extremist/AQI stronghold. Controversy surrounded both the first and second battles of Fallujah: among other themes, critics accused the US of war crimes and brutality, while supporters pointed to the efforts at avoiding civilian casualties and incontrovertible evidence of the heavy presence of AQI. But we don't hear nearly as much about Fallujah today; the MSM mentions Fallujah rarely, as compared to a year or so ago. Why is that?

One reason might be the success of the joint US/IA/IP operations there. The following excerpt from a Captain's Journal interview with a Marine LTC in Fallujah provides some insight:

TCJ: It appears that the transition to nonkinetic operations was fairly stark. Press reports about combat operations stopped and press reports about construction of police precincts started. In a professional military academic climate that claims that standard counterinsurgency takes ten to twelve years, how did the Marines of 2/6 manage to pull this off?

Lt. Col. Mullen: We got the citizens of the city involved in providing their own security through the neighborhood watch system. We pay them a pittance of $50 a month (only a part time job as an extra set of eyeballs for the police - they are not police) and we authorize them to carry a weapon if they have one for their own protection. As I said above, the result has been a 300% decrease in enemy attacks. We also give the people a serious reason to stay on this side of the fence - we call it the “What’s in it for me?” program. We have a heavy civil affairs emphasis that is changing the face of Fallujah. In addition to the essential infrastructure improvements noted above, we are hiring them to pick up rubble and garbage, to paint cement barriers and school walls with murals (negates graffiti) and we are putting them to work in every way we can think of so they can put food on the table for their families. Progress has been astounding and whenever we measure atmospherics (several times a week) all indications are that we are having a tremendous amount of success. We have tied all of this to the improvements in the security situation and we tell them that if they want it to continue, then the enemy has the be driven out completely and kept out. They understand and are providing a great deal more tips than they used to. The enemy has not been able to do much of anything of late and we just passed the three month mark without having a single casualty from this battalion as a result of enemy action. That is unheard of in Fallujah.
[emphasis added]

Take special note of the comment, "We also give the people a serious reason to stay on this side of the fence - we call it the “What’s in it for me?” program." For certain, it ain't over, and there will be periods of doubt and events suggesting uncertainty about the future. Nonetheless, in the overall scheme of these things, successful counter-insurgency campaigns build success from the ground up, just like these Marines are doing.
 

Billo_Really

Banned
DP Veteran
Joined
Jul 6, 2005
Messages
18,930
Reaction score
1,040
Location
HBCA
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Very Liberal
Originally posted by oldreliable67:
Very few are unaware of the battles that have taken place in Fallujah. The torture rooms, weapons caches and bomb factories found there attested to its reputation as an extremist/AQI stronghold. Controversy surrounded both the first and second battles of Fallujah: among other themes, critics accused the US of war crimes and brutality, while supporters pointed to the efforts at avoiding civilian casualties and incontrovertible evidence of the heavy presence of AQI. But we don't hear nearly as much about Fallujah today; the MSM mentions Fallujah rarely, as compared to a year or so ago. Why is that?

One reason might be the success of the joint US/IA/IP operations there. The following excerpt from a Captain's Journal interview with a Marine LTC in Fallujah provides some insight:
Don't ya hate it when you think you got a good subject for a thread and nobody cares to post on it? I started a thread about the good things going on in Iraq and only 16 people cared to comment. It's like people only want to hear the bad. I know it's difficult to find a lot of positive stories going on (when you compare it to all the negative ones), but they do exist. Although we disagree on the percentage of good to bad, I think we both know it's not all one or the other.

Therefore, I will take a break from my more known position regarding Iraq, and attempt to keep my posts more in concert with the theme of the thread. However, if I do stray and fall back on my usual diatribe, it will be because TOT showed up and made me do it, thus, absolving me of any responsibility for my posts.

The following is an example of us trying to get the community around Fallujah involved in the political process of running the city.
Special DoD Briefing with COL Simcock on Ongoing Security Operations In Western Iraq from the Pentagon Briefing Room, Arlington Va.

The second thing I'd like to talk about, and that's the governance aspect of what we're doing over here in AO Raleigh. AO Raleigh is obviously dominated by the city of Fallujah. And Fallujah is a city that three years ago during Al-Fajr Operation was almost destroyed. Anyone that was in Camp Fallujah at that time was either -- in the city of Fallujah at that time was either killed or captured. So Fallujah started from scratch.

Now, we're three years down the road, and the change is phenomenal. Fallujah is now a city of over almost 400,000 people. It is a city that is in Iraqi battlespace. It is controlled and run by the Iraqi 2nd Brigade. The 2nd Brigade commander is a Shi'a. He has a brigade that is a mixture of Kurds, Sunni and Shi'a. That brigade commander works shoulder to shoulder with a Sunni city chief of police. They work together to provide security to a duly elected mayor. That mayor is supported by a city council of 20 members. And Fallujah today is an operating city that is both economically strong and a flourishing city. That's not to say that it doesn't still have a lot of problems that we have to deal with, but comparatively of where it is today and where it was three years ago, it's a night-and- day difference.

The third thing I'd like to talk to you about is the tribal engagement piece. In AO Raleigh, we have four major tribes that surround the city of Fallujah, and we've made strong efforts to engage with the tribal leadership, because that's the way that Iraqis in AO Raleigh have governed themselves for thousands of years. We've made great strides in this area.
I found this part of the article you linked to be very enlightening...

TCJ: How badly has the lack of political reconciliation harmed the efforts to pacify the Anbar Province and in particular Fallujah? It seems that there is still much animosity between Fallujah and Baghdad.

Lt. Col. Mullen: I cannot comment too much on the political situation in Baghdad, but the people here do not like the Iraqi Government and blame them for all the shortcomings in fuel, food and essential services. I will say also though that things are rarely as bad as the Iraqi’s make them out to be. They are prone to serious over exaggeration and always want to blame someone else. It is never their fault. For example, fuel arrives in the city, but to make extra money, the truck drivers sell it to “free enterprise” folks that then sell it curbside from plastic jugs - it is known as black market fuel where we come from. They charge much more than normal and keep the fuel from getting to the gas stations and city government in enough amounts to keep them open and operating. They also tap into electrical and water lines illegally to get better service, all of which seriously degrades the overall service provided. The city government is working on these things, but they all contribute to the problems Fallujah is having, and the Fallujans blame it all on the “Iranians” who make up the current government. In the general opinion here, only Sunni can run a country properly, as they have until the past few years. You also have a hard time convincing them that they are a minority. The things they come up with really are amazing at times. It is only a semi-literate society though so word of mouth, despite how illogical or ridiculous the rumor, has a big impact - especially if it is along the lines of what they want to believe.
Like I said, no guarantees. But I like the premise of the thread.
 

YamoMabus

Member
Joined
Sep 3, 2007
Messages
135
Reaction score
3
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Conservative
Fallujah is a microcosm for what will occur in iraq if Americans stop whining so much for 2 seconds and give this war enough time. 4,000 American deaths in 5 years is a joke, more people died the in Philipino insurrection, anyone heard of it? Didn't think so. The debate over the war in Iraq is realists vs liberals who don't understand that politics is war. When your the super power you kick *** and take names, get used to it because this is just the beginning. I'm glad to see some people taking into account what we are accomplishing, not just a bunch of highlights of carbombs and sectarian violence.
 

Billo_Really

Banned
DP Veteran
Joined
Jul 6, 2005
Messages
18,930
Reaction score
1,040
Location
HBCA
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Very Liberal
See guys, it's a little tough when I see a post like that, I can't get my fun in!

Yamo,

Say that on another thread and you're dog-s.h.i.t!

But on this one, I'll pass....

...for now!
 

WI Crippler

DP Veteran
Joined
Oct 10, 2006
Messages
15,427
Reaction score
9,577
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Centrist
Its good to see a post regarding the positives that are happening, and a basic outline of effective counter-insurgency tactics taking shape. Not only is it important to the people of Fallujah and Iraq, but it is important for future military operations around the world, since insurgency styled ops is probably going to be what we will be combating for a while down the road. Developing these tactics in the heat of battle not only protects civilian life, but the lessons learned can also save the lives of troops in the future.

And a big thumbs up to Billo, for restraining himself....... so far :mrgreen:
 

YamoMabus

Member
Joined
Sep 3, 2007
Messages
135
Reaction score
3
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Conservative
Name the time and the place!! :shock: IM NOT SCARED I SWEAR!!
 

Lerxst

U mad bro?
DP Veteran
Joined
Apr 28, 2007
Messages
17,108
Reaction score
5,786
Location
Nationwide...
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Slightly Liberal
Very good article and thanks for posting this. The changing COIN strategy is apparently working in some of the worst places. Success does breed success.

Oh and good job with your discipline here Billo. :2razz:
 

Billo_Really

Banned
DP Veteran
Joined
Jul 6, 2005
Messages
18,930
Reaction score
1,040
Location
HBCA
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Very Liberal
Originally posted by YamoMabus
Name the time and the place!! IM NOT SCARED I SWEAR!!
Go to the...
Reflections On The Ontological Argument of St. Anselm
...thread and hi-jack it!

I'll be over shortly there-after with my opening salvo's...

It'll be fun!
 

Lerxst

U mad bro?
DP Veteran
Joined
Apr 28, 2007
Messages
17,108
Reaction score
5,786
Location
Nationwide...
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Slightly Liberal
Go to the......thread and hi-jack it!

I'll be over shortly there-after with my opening salvo's...

It'll be fun!

One thing is for true....Billo backs down from no man.

:mrgreen:
 

Billo_Really

Banned
DP Veteran
Joined
Jul 6, 2005
Messages
18,930
Reaction score
1,040
Location
HBCA
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Very Liberal
Originally posted by Jeff Merriman:
One thing is for true....Billo backs down from no man.
Don't kiss my a.s.s!

I hate people who stroke me.

I'm getting distracted and losing my focus. As a result, I'm not keeping my promises. I got to get back into my game face (or thread face, in this case).

Okay, here we go...
Iraqi Police making slow, steady progress in Fallujah
August 10th, 2007 by Double Tap


INDCJournal has a riveting video illustrating a typical day in an Iraqi police station in Fallujah. If you think it’s chaotic and dangerous, remember, this is Fallujah. Several years ago, that town was completely dominated by the insurgents and jihadis. The Iraqi Police are making progress, and we’re slowly weaning them off the U.S. military teat.
 

Lerxst

U mad bro?
DP Veteran
Joined
Apr 28, 2007
Messages
17,108
Reaction score
5,786
Location
Nationwide...
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Slightly Liberal
Don't kiss my a.s.s!

I hate people who stroke me.

I'm getting distracted and losing my focus. As a result, I'm not keeping my promises. I got to get back into my game face (or thread face, in this case).

Okay, here we go...

:lol: :lol: :lol:
 
Top Bottom