'Longknife' Squadron, Iraqi police partner to deter terrorism in Baghdad
May 24, 2011
BAGHDAD, May 24, 2011 -- Soldiers with the 5th "Longknife" Squadron, 4th Cavalry Regiment, 2nd Advise and Assist Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, United States Division - Center, recently partnered with members of the Iraqi Federal Police to patrol areas of Baghdad with the potential for terrorist activity.
These joint patrols have become a major focus of the Longknife Squadron's mission.
Working with the Iraqi Federal Police, IFP, Longknife Soldiers have provided increased security in a number of neighborhoods in Baghdad, including the area around Baghdad International Airport, or BIAP.
These joint security measures have shown to be effective in deterring violence.
"Since the beginning of security patrols around BIAP, we have seen a decrease in enemy activity," said 1st Lt. Michael Sprigg, a troop intelligence support team officer with 5th Squadron. "This is largely due to the ISF (Iraqi Security Forces) presence and joint patrols in the Radwaniyah area."
During these missions with Iraqi police members, Longknife Soldiers also try to gain information that could be used to help prevent future violence.
"Since the patrols began, the Iraqi Federal Police and United States forces have found a significant amount of weaponry, which helps them identify where the attacks are originating," said Sprigg.
As the expected drawdown of U.S. forces from Iraq approaches, members of local ISF such as the 2nd Iraqi Federal Police Division, are preparing for when they will need to continue this mission without the presence of U.S. troops.
With the knowledge gained from training while working alongside 5th Squadron soldiers, many Iraqi police feel ready to do their part.
"It is our job to protect the people of our country, and we will bring those to justice that want to cause them harm," said Sgt. Haidar with the 2nd IFP Division.