By Pfc. Michael Schuch, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division Public Affairs OfficeJuly 17, 2008
FORWARD OPERATING BASE HAMMER, Iraq -- The commander of the 9th Iraqi Army Division and leaders from the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division, met here July 8 to assess the security of the Mada'in Qada region.
Maj. Gen. Jassem Nazal Qassim shared his thoughts on increasing the Iraqi forces' security capabilities with Col. Pat White, commander of the 2nd BCT.
"No matter the operation (Iraqi security forces) are capable of providing the necessary forces," said Qassim. "For any needs that arise, we are ready."
Qassim also discussed terrorism and extremist activity in the region, comparing the situation in previous years to the current state of the Mada'in. The leaders agreed there is continuing success in the cooperative efforts between Iraqi and coalition forces.
"When coalition forces came to the Mada'in Qada, terrorism covered much of the qada," Qassim said. "Now, because of the joint efforts of coalition and ISF, it has dropped significantly."
"ISF performing and leading operations are becoming a common occurance," said Qassim. "Nearly all planning and operations are being done by ISF with support from coalition forces. With our cooperation, we can continue to work toward our shared goal to get terrorism out of the Mada'in."
The 2nd BCT is a U.S. Army Europe unit based in Baumholder, Germany.