By SGT Chad Menegay (USF-I, DCG A&T PAO)December 12, 2010
BAGHDAD -The Iraq Armor School, Eastern Wing, moved from Camp Taji to the Combined Arms School at the Besmaya Combat Training Center Nov. 24.
The school's 69-vehicle convoy moved 320 Soldiers to the BCTC along with thousands of training aids and equipment, including everything from beds to tanks.
"The BCTC is much better for the Armor School," said U.S. Army Lt. Col. Bill Hanley, senior advisor to the Iraqi Armor School, and a native of Cathedral City, Calif. "It offers gunnery ranges close by so tanks and armored personnel carriers can be driven to the ranges rather than flat bed from Taji, which would take several hours."
"It's an armor school, so they need the range facilities to be able to [conduct] live-fire [exercises]," said U.S. Army Master Sgt. Estevan Castillo, senior enlisted advisor to the Iraqi Armor School, and a native of San Juan, Texas. "With all the training area at Besmaya, they can actually do maneuvers. It was a smart move."
The newly-renovated Combined Arms School facilities feature a school house, living quarters, a dining facility and a maintenance garage. Iraq Training and Advisory Mission-Army refurbished the facilities to provide infrastructure for the Iraq Armor School.
The Iraqi Armor School provides IA Soldiers with specialty training for armor and mechanized infantry career fields. Training includes weapons, maintenance, tactics and communications