By Capt. Robin Worch, 2-12th Cav. Regt., 4th BCT, 1st Cav. Div., PAOOctober 29, 2008
CONTINGENCY OPERATIONS BASE ADDER, Iraq - Soldiers from the 2nd Battalion, 12th Cavalry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division hosted a joint-planning meeting with their Iraqi Army counterparts here Oct. 25.
Leaders from the 39th and 40th Brigades of the 10th Iraqi Army Division met with 2-12th Cav. Regt. "Thunder Horse" Soldiers to cover administration and training for Iraqi units operating inside the Dhi Qar and Muthanna Provinces.
"It gives us all a chance to talk about common problems and different ways to solve them based on different cultural views and military regulations," said Lt. Col. Scott Kendrick, a native of Spartanburg, S.C., and commander of the Thunder Horse Battalion.
Several times throughout the meeting, the IA commanders asked questions concerning discipline and retention of Soldiers in the U.S. Army. The goal was to give the Iraqi commanders insight into the workings of a combined U.S. Army unit, along with demonstrating how those units solve administrative and logistic issues common within a large military organization.
"The ability to see that the U.S. Army has some of the same problems that we do, and handles many of them in the same way is encouraging," said Staff Brig. Gen. Salam Jabber, commander of 39/10th IA Div. "It shows that we have been successful in our efforts as an Army for the Iraqi people."
The ability of the Iraqi Army leadership to learn from the Thunder Horse Battalion in very short periods of time has increased the 10th IA Division's ability to function independently in the southern Iraq.