Marines ‘new’ Iraq Mission

The Iraqi army had a bit of a triumph in Ramadi. Its very obvious that the Marines have been pivotal in transforming the Iraqi Army. Below here we have pro-government forces as they celebrate retaking their region.635908021939335488-MAR-ramadi-retake-1Marines have been deploying to Iraq for over 16 months. They’ve done so quietly though, helping in the fight against ISIS militants. Been over a decade thus far… Towards the end of 2015, Iraqi army hoisted its flag in the city of Ramadi. This was done in order to declare  victory.

McDonough and his team helped the Iraqis plan their operations. They shared critical intelligence about the enemy and used that information to coordinate airstrikes. “It was about understanding the battle space, locating bad guys and then bringing in coalition aircraft on them,” he said. McDonough said he found working with the Iraqis motivating.

635906078930460755-MAR-Iraq-mission-LF-4There are plenty of Iraqi generals that have been in the fight for 20 plus years. Some have battled against Iran in the 1980’s. Many had been displaced three or four times, some were fired 5 or 6 times. They also fought with limited resources in places they grew up. McDonough said he would watch 19 year old soldiers eagerly head into the fight with limited weapons training. No flak jackets, helmets and limited rounds.”To see and be surrounded by people like that is pretty inspiring. We fight and even break bread with these guys.


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