Good News from the Front Lines

With all the negative reporting by the MSM regarding Iraq and Afghanistan, we hope to counterbalance it with good news that’s being missed or underreported. Occasionally, we’ll update you with interesting information from Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom, like the following:

* The Iraqi Army stepped up to the plate last week and began to flex their muscle. While operating a cordon-and-search operation in the Ninevah province, Iraqi soldiers detained 28 suspected insurgents. They also seized weapons and insurgent propaganda. A similar operation in Ayn Zalah netted the Iraqi Army five suspects, three of which were listed on the Iraqi army’s “most wanted” list.

* It wasn’t the stork delivering a baby in Afghanistan last week. It was a Black Hawk helicopter that helped to deliver a newborn on Saturday. Technically, the US Army Medic team aboard the Black Hawk delivered the baby girl while in flight to a medical facility. The mother, the 40-year-old wife of a village elder, had been in labor for 18 hours. Concerned, the village midwife notified a nearby U.S. military medical sergeant of her serious complications. Mother and child are reportedly doing well.

* Violent conflicts between coalition forces and enemy fighters have significantly declined in Afghanistan. Additionally, the number of areas deemed insecure has also “dramatically” decreased, according to Army Maj. Gen. Eric T. Olson, commander of Combined Joint Task Force 76. Maj. Gen. Olson reported these developments at a news conference in Kabul last week. He added that the secure environment has allowed international organizations to move around the country more freely and that reconstruction efforts can be completed at a faster pace.

* Between 142,000 and 145,000 Iraqi troops have been trained and equipped. Of these, approximately 50,000 of the soldiers are considered “elite” troops and currently “fight directly” against the insurgents, according to Lt. Gen. David Patreus in overall command of training Iraqi security forces. In a major move towards Iraqi independence which would allow the US troops to return home, Iraqis have begun to train their own soldiers. Iraqi officers feel confident they will eventually have the resources and trained troops to maintain their country’s security.

* In a related story, 2,900 Iraqi soldiers graduated just yesterday. All these men had prior military training and were part of the Direct Recruit Replacements program. Essentially, they were on a fast-track, three week training program. They will be deployed throughout Iraq wherever they are needed.

If you are a soldier or family member and have any stories to submit to “Good News from the Front Lines,” please send and e-mail to Surfside@onebigdog.net or to Bigdog@onebigdog.net.



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