By Pfc. Evan Loyd, 2nd BCT PAO, 1st Armd. Div., MND-BFebruary 24, 2009
BAGHDAD - Soldiers from Multi-National Division-Baghdad and their Iraqi Army partners provided a life changing experience to Iraqi children with the delivery of over a dozen new wheelchairs in Adwaniyah Feb. 18.
As in many parts of Iraq, families simply can not afford wheelchairs. That's when Iraqi soldiers of the 2nd Battalion, 55th Brigade, 17th IA Division took matters in their own hands and worked with soldiers of the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division, MND-B to acquire and deliver the wheel chairs.
Iraqi Army Lt. Col. Tahseen, commander, 2nd Bn., 55th IA Bde., saw the people of his area needed wheelchairs; providing them could be a good opportunity to show the local populace that the Iraqi Army cared about them.
"This is my third tour in Iraq, and Lt. Col. Tahseen is one of the most competent Iraqi Army officers I have ever known. He unfailingly takes the initiative, and genuinely cares about the citizens of Iraq without regard to sectarian divisions," said Capt. Allan Carroll, of Kailua, Hawaii, commander of Company B, 1st Battalion, 35th Armor Regiment. "This event is one more example of his commitment to the greater good of his country."
In his speech after the donation of the wheelchairs, Tahseen decided that this was a chance to show the citizens he doesn't take any sides based on religious background.
"I hope that you will take these wheel chairs in the spirit of service with which we give them. I would have the citizens of Adwaniyah know that regardless of background, be you Shi'a, Sunni, Kurd, or Christian, you are all citizens of Iraq, and my battalion will serve you and will defend you to our utmost ability."