5,000th M1114 HMMWV transferred to Iraqi forces
June 30, 2009
- The 5,000th 1114 HMMWV was transferred to the Iraqi inventory at Taji
- A total of 8,500 vehicles are scheduled to be transferred by the end of 2009
TAJI, Iraq - Marking a milestone en route to handing over security responsibility to Iraqi forces, the 5,000th M1114 HMMWV was transferred to their inventory during a late-spring ceremony at Taji National Maintenance Depot, Iraq.
The M1114 Transfer Program employs more than 500 Iraqis from across the country. The program aims to boost the capabilities of Iraqi security forces, while also building logistics capability.
This program, in which Army Sustainment Command and its 402nd Army Field Support Brigade play a key role, is a highly visible example of cooperation and partnership between the U.S. and Iraq governments.
The two-year program refurbishes M1114s to the "Inspect and Repair Only as Necessary" standards. The IROAN process comprises three phases, culminating in painting the vehicles in the Iraq Army and Ministry of Interior color schemes.
The first refurbished M1114 was transferred March 12, 2008, with a total of 8,500 vehicles scheduled to be transferred by the end of 2009. Trained and mentored by Americans and Coalition partners, some 500 Iraqi civilian workers are churning out refurbished vehicles at the rate of 400 per month.
"The biggest success of the program was the way that the Iraqis can take the cast-off parts and convert them to a viable, working vehicle ready to perform its mission," said Elaine Bitsche, administrative contracting officer with the Defense Contract Management Agency.
"It's amazing how the Iraqi people are dedicated to this program. They take pride in their work and their dedication is outstanding," Bitsche added.
Iraq Army Director of Electrical and Mechanical Engineering, Staff Maj. Gen. Muniem, and British Army Brig. Mark Lacey, deputy commanding general, Multi-National Security Transition Command - Iraq, were the keynote speakers at the April 22 ceremony, congratulating all those who worked on the project.
Lacey welcomed the guests and workers, saying he has seen huge improvements in the security capabilities of the Iraqi security forces and that the up-armored HMMWV is a significant step in that progress.
Muniem welcomed the addition of the M1114 HMMWVs as a maneuver, fire and support vehicle that he said will increase the capabilities of Iraqi soldiers securing the provinces.
Marking the cooperative effort, Lacey and Muniem presented certificates to key workers and advisers.
The final transfer was performed when an Iraq Army and a National Police HMMWV, each adorned in ceremonial decorations, pulled forward. Two American servicemembers stepped out and handed the keys over to Iraq Ministry of Defense and Ministry of Interior representatives.