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    Iraqi army takes over Combat Outpost Dragon

    Iraqi army takes over Combat Outpost Dragon

    Photo By Pfc. Christopher McKenna | A formation of Soldiers from 3rd Battalion, 187th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade...... read more read more

    By Pfc. Christopher McKenna
    3rd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault)

    CAMP STRIKER, Iraq – The Iraqi army assumed control of Combat Outpost Dragon during a transfer-of-responsibility ceremony Nov. 1, 2008.

    The 1st Battalion, 23rd Brigade, 17th IA Division took the reigns from 3rd Bn., 187th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault).

    "Over the past year, the coalition has assisted us in making Yusifiyah a secure area," said Col. Aman, 1/23/17th IA commander.

    COP Dragon was formed in 2007 from what was once the Yusifiyah Thermal Power Plant. Coalition forces worked side-by-side with the IA, conducting missions ranging from governance operations to air assaults.

    "We have worked together with the Iraqi army since we arrived, and because of it, we are now at a point where a large American presence is not needed in the area," said Lt. Col. Andrew Rohling, 3-187th Inf. Regt. commander.

    During their tour in the area, the 3-187th Inf. Regt. crossed the Euphrates River to establish a military presence in the village of Owesat for the first time since the initial invasion in 2003.

    "The success over our time here is a reflection of the work the Iraqi army has put forth, and because of the combined efforts, the area has become self sufficient," said Capt. Michael Cooke, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 3-187th Inf. Regt., personnel officer.

    COP Dragon was the largest base transitioned from CF to the IA.

    "Today I can stand here and say that the 'Triangle of Death' is now the 'Triangle of Life,'" Rohling said.

    "We are ready and willing to make sure the Yusifiyah area remains safe after the departure of coalition forces," Aman said. "I cannot express enough gratitude for the work the American forces have done with us since last September."

    Aman said the IA plans to continue work toward sustaining security and stability in Yusifiyah.

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    NEWS INFO

    Date Taken: 11.03.2008
    Date Posted: 11.03.2008 06:25
    Story ID: 25838
    Location: BAGHDAD, IQ 

    Web Views: 743
    Downloads: 551

    PUBLIC DOMAIN