AL TIB, Iraq (Nov. 9, 2010) -- Just a stone's throw away from the Iranian border, United States Soldiers spent their final day at Joint Security Station Al Tib before pressing forward with their next mission.

After nearly two-and-a-half years of operations at the border, the U. S. officially transferred Al Tib, also known as Chalat, and all its properties to the Government of Iraq Oct. 28, enabling the Iraqi Security Forces to continue border protection for the Iraqi people.

Maj. Christopher Adams, a native of Dayton, Ohio, and an advisor for the 2nd Commando and Department of Border Enforcement, attached to the 3rd Advise and Assist Brigade, 4th Infantry Division, signed documents with Iraqi Army Col. Imad Karem, battalion commander for the 2nd CDO, and Nasir Zaid, aide to the Receivership Secretariat, Office of the Prime Minister.

"The official transfer of the property will further the commandos' training and enhance their resources, [allowing continued] border protection of the Iraqi people," Adams said.

"They are taking on more responsibility," said Capt. Dean Lyon, a native of Princeton, N.J., and the Troop A, 4th Squadron, 10th Cavalry Regiment commander.

"They are securing an entire border," Lyon said, "the whole northern province without direct U.S. involvement."

The property, valued at about $240,000 on physical assets alone, housed U.S. and Iraqi troops near what was once a thriving tribal farm community prior to the Iraq-Iran war.

"Our area of responsibility is roughly more than 100 linear kilometers, north-to-south along the border between Iran and Iraq," Adams explained. "Our primary mission was to interdict the threat of smuggling lethal aids, which may be manufactured across the border."

Adams said the joint operation between the Soldiers and the commandos had grown into more than a training mission.

"The commandos have been known to be one of the elite units within the DBE, and the Iraqi army leadership have a lot of experience," Adams said. "I've learned a lot from them. It's been more than just a partnership, it's been somewhat of a friendship as well."

Adams said the transfer of so much responsibility is indicative of the Iraqi Security Forces' capabilities.

"It's a success. They are prepared to take over," Adams said.

The 2nd CDOs are trained as a quick reaction force and respond to border security matters and will continue working with the Department of Border Enforcement.

Lyon said being a part of the transition enables his troops in fulfilling Operation New Dawn's mission.

"[We are] transferring the (security) of Iraq back to the ISF to secure their own borders, focus on threats outside their country and police threats inside the border," Lyon said. "I definitely believe we're fulfilling the mission."

"This is a big step forward for them overall," he said. "They are ready to take Al Tib."

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