BALAD, Iraq - A typical U.S. Army unit utilizes a concept that many successful organizations employ: teamwork. The teamwork concept came into play during a five-day mission conducted by the 5th Battalion, 82nd Field Artillery Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat, 1st Cavalry Division here Sept. 12.

The mission, referred to by the unit as Operation Chipper Jones, consisted of house-to-house searches and a series of raids to seek out and arrest criminals and illegal weapons in northern Baghdad near Joint Base Balad.

"Chipper Jones was a simple, yet very effective mission," said Pfc. Isaac Husky, of Morristown, Tenn. "It gave us the chance to spend more time with the locals and establish a better perspective with the Iraqi people."

The time spent with locals reaped major benefits for Husky and the 5th Bn., 82nd FA Regt. Soldiers when a local farmer escorted the unit directly to a sizable weapons cache in a village near Baghdad.

"He was upset about insurgents damaging his crops when conducting hasty mortar attacks directed at the U.S. base (Balad)," explained Husky.

Along with finding illegal weapons, the Long Knife Solders completed mounted and dismounted patrols in areas where, historically, there were many incidences of indirect fire and insurgent activity.

JB Balad has earned the nickname "Mortaritaville" due to the amount mortar fire it receives. But thanks to a recent surge of additional Soldiers in Baghdad and the surrounding areas, the indirect fire has steadily decreased.

Operations such as Chipper Jones have quelled the violence in northern Baghdad, and most of the Iraqis express a greater sense of security with the increased presence of U.S. Soldiers.

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16