Tuesday, August 26, 2008

The Ugly Duckling

The Iraqi military has come a long way. It's soliders have picked up a lot of American-isms though.

I was watching some British news coverage this morning showing a 16-year old female suicide bomber that for one reason or another did not detonate herself. The footage was riveting and depicted two lightly armored Iraqi police officers striping the vest and clothes off the girl as she was still standing in the street. What caught my eye was the other 4-5 Iraqi police standing within 2-3 meters of the girl apparently watching and trying to act useful. What's to say that, as in many cases, she is not remotely detonated, killing the lot of them?

The Iraq police force is supposed to have undergone extensive training by the Coalition but instances like this make me wonder just how effective that training has been. I see Iraqi Police on a daily basis and I've yet to be impressed by anything that they've done. To me, an uninformed observer, they appear to be little more than disheveled thugs with guns who motor about the city with lights and sirens, firing their weapons into the air to force people to move out of their way. I see very little signs of a highly trained, professional, and disciplined force, one which is going to be necessary to assume the role of this county's primary security provider.

Progress is evident on all fronts, from education to infrastructure; the Iraqi Army looks to be a well-trained and equipped force; it's only the police that appear to be lagging far behind. It's too bad because the Police are Iraq's most visible public entity, one which could benefit the most from having its ducks well in order.


David M said...

The Thunder Run has linked to this post in the blog post From the Front: 08/26/2008 News and Personal dispatches from the front and the home front.

Anonymous said...

I was wondering if you could be more specific in your observation of the progress in Iraq. Are the hospitals staffed and is there ample medicine available? How about electricity and water? Is the sewage system functioning and how about the overall infrastructure?
Also what is the word on the Status of Forces agreement. The word is that there is a big disagreement between Maliki and the US in regard a set pullout date?
And are more people out on the streets everywhere or is it just in the already ethnically cleaned neighborhoods.
And if you were an investor, would you say the American taxpayer was getting a good return on their investment for all we have spent on training those policemen?
Inquiring minds want to know...