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    Equipping Iraqi Security Forces

    Equipping Iraqi Security Forces

    Photo By Sgt. Aaron Leblanc | Spc. John Bilka, mechanic with the 1538th Transportation Company, 419th Combat...... read more read more



    Courtesy Story

    3rd Expeditionary Sustainment Command

    From the 3rd Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) Public Affairs Office

    CAMP TAJI, Iraq – The U.S. military transferred thousands of armored Humvees to the Iraqi army as part of an ongoing effort to improve their combat effectiveness.

    Administered by Multi-National Security Transition Command – Iraq, the program is a joint-effort between the U.S. Army and U.S. Air Force with the intent to turn over 8,500 of the vehicles to the Iraqis by July 2009.

    The MNSTC-I supply division, manages an approximate $200 million contract to refurbish the vehicles before they are sold to the Iraqis.

    "Our aim is to provide the Iraqi security forces, military and police, with a proven, reliable, and capable vehicle that will build their forces' capability and enable the ISF to engage in the counter-insurgency fight," said Sage "MNSTC-I is tasked to generate, train, and help sustain Iraqi security forces so that they become a capable and self-reliant force," he said.

    Humvees destined for service in the Iraqi army, or Iraqi police force start their transition process by making their way to the Camp Taji Redistribution Property Assistance Team Yard, located on the joint Iraqi-American base a few miles north of Baghdad.

    Once at Camp Taji, the Humvees face a rigorous validation process. "The vehicles are cleaned, inspected, and processed through a maintenance program that refurbishes the vehicles from the ground up," said Sage.

    Sage went on to explain that after the process, every Humvee receives a follow up inspection, repainted for the Iraqi army or national police forces and finally inspected jointly by the Iraqis and U.S. government before they are accepted.

    Mechanics of the 1538th Transportation Company, 419th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, 10th Sustainment Brigade conduct the initial inspection.

    Sgt. 1st Class Russell Hullaby, 1538th Trans. Co., 165th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, 10th Sustainment Brigade, heads up this process.

    "It's a huge mission that involves players all over the country, and the whole thing is focused right here at Camp Taji. Every Humvee transferred to the Iraqis comes through us. It's really something that my guys can be proud of," said Hullaby.

    "We're equipped to fix minor problems on site," explained Hullaby, "but major jobs like engine or transmission replacement have to be handed over to the 536th."

    The 536th Maintenance Company, 419th Combat Sustainment Support Brigade, 10th Sustainment Brigade, is a direct support unit, assigned to the 165th CSSB.

    The Air Force-controlled RPAT main office validates cleared humvees at a rate of 50 per week, and assigns a batch number for transfer to the Iraqi ministry of defense.

    "Our program turns over armored Humvees only," said Maj. Sharon Ramp, on-site director of the Iraqi Humvee turnover program at Camp Taji. Ramp further explained that since the program's inception, it has transferred more than 3,000 Humvees to the Iraqis at an average rate of 400 vehicles per month.



    Date Taken: 01.15.2009
    Date Posted: 01.15.2009 07:58
    Story ID: 28861
    Location: TAJI, IQ

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