I Marine Expeditionary Force
transfers authority of Multi-National Force-West to II Marine
CAMP FALLUJAH, Iraq -- Lieutenant
Gen. John F. Sattler, commanding general, I Marine Expeditionary
Force, transferred authority of Multi-National Force-West to Maj.
Gen. Stephen T. Johnson, commanding general, II Marine Expeditionary
Force (Forward), during a ceremony here today.
"I've never been more optimistic in my almost two years of
association with this area," said Sattler. "The energy, the
enthusiasm of the people is catapulting this movement forward. The
Iraqi security forces are capable, well led and confident and that
confidence flows over to the Iraqi people."
As the incoming commander, Johnson expressed his view of the
future of Iraq. "We are going to see a great increase in the Iraqi
Security Forces, they are becoming very effective. We are going to
see the emergence of the Iraqi government. Their constitution is
being written, elections are being held and political decisions are
being made in a democratic fashion. We are going to see their
economy pick up. We are going to see opportunities for jobs and for
industry. And we are also going to see the emergence of truth. For
years, this country has not known truth and we will be seeing more
More than 41,000 Marines, soldiers, Sailors and airmen of I MEF
have been deployed in western Iraq since early August 2004. While
here, they conducted campaigns against terrorists and criminals in
Najaf, northern Babil, Karbala and Al Anbar provinces in support of
Operation Iraqi Freedom II.
Operations conducted by I MEF ultimately led to Iraqi citizens
being able to participate in the first free election in more than 35
Note to media: The email address for Multi-National Force-West
Public Affairs is now