Military


Baquba Airfield
33°45'00"N 044°38'28"E

Baquba Airfield is located approximately 35-45 miles northeast of Baghdad.

Camp Boom

Camp Boom was a base formerly occupied by Saddam Hussein's 41st Armored Brigade of the Republican Guard Al Nida Division. When the regime fell, the troops of the 41st left the compound and blended into the local population. Anything that could be looted, was - including missiles, artillery, hand grenades and guns. The Iraqis destroyed anything that they could not take with them.

Living conditions for American troops at Camp Boom were basic. There was no air conditioning, no plumbing, and no privacy. Sand the consistency of moon dust damaged equipment. The dilapidated barracks offered no relief from the searing heat.

By late June 2003 elements of the 4th Infantry Division and Task Force Ironhorse were operating from Camp Boom, near Baqouba, 35 miles northeast of Baghdad. US forces kicked off a massive sweep 29 June 2003 with more than 20 lightening raids in towns across a wide swath of Iraq, netting at least 60 suspects in a show of air and infantry power designed to crush resistance and stem a wave of deadly attacks on US troops. The operation, dubbed "Sidewinder," began across an area of central Iraq stretching from the Iranian border to the areas north of Baghdad, and was expected to last for several days. There were no initial reports of U.S. casualties, nor, however, was there any indication that the operation had netted any of Iraq's most wanted fugitives.

Camp/Forward Operating Base Gabe

Camp Gabriel used to be called Camp Boom because of its loud explosions. By November 2003 it was said to be called "Camp Gabriel" also known as "Camp Gabe", in honor of Sgt. 1st Class Dan Henry Gabrielson, from the 652nd Engineer Battalion (Reserves) attatched to the 588th Engineer Battalion, and who died on July 9, 2003 as a result of hostile fire in Ba Qubah while traveling in a convoy that came under attack. He was the first sapper of that unit to be killed in theater. However, in December 2003 it was reported that the base at Baquabah was still called Camp Boom "because they've been shot at so much."

The quality of live at FOB Gabe has improved almost daily. Whether it is renovating latrines, installing more AC units, receiving more housing units, or improving sidewalks, Task Force 1-6 has taken large strides towards improving conditions all around the FOB. With the help of KBR technicians now living in FOB Gabe, larger projects such as an central water distribution system for the latrines and showers and new power grid system to name a few, have resulted in very few power and water outages. MWR facilities such as the internet café, game room, and gym have all received new makeovers for the soldiers' use. A new concrete sidewalk that replaced the old cracked one makes for a smooth flat walk from the TOC, to the internet café and DFAC.

In March of 2005 at FOB Gabe, soldiers from C Company, 141st Engineer Combat Battalion built 2 kilometers of earthen berm around a new Iraqi National Guard training area. The Iraqi National Guard is now able to conduct their training in a secure setting.

1st Platoon, Alpha Company, 82nd Engineer Battalion conducted individual soldier skills training with Iraqi National Guard (ING) soldiers at FOB Gabe.

During the first two days of leader training, soldiers from Charlie Company, 213th ING Battalion participated in individual skills training to prepare them as instructors for when their platoon arrives for training on December 17.

Their Platoon Leader, 1st Lt. Halim Muhammed Kaseem, along with his Platoon Sergeant and four other squad leaders, are currently receiving training in basic first aid, basic rifle marksmanship, basic map reading skills and enemy activity reporting. This training is being conducted at Forward Operating Base (FOB) Gabe.

Camp Freedom I (Camp Al-Hurya Al-Awal)
Camp Warhorse

In mid-September 2004, as part of an Army-wide effort to give its facilities around Baghdad friendlier connotations, and try to resolve the issue of constantly-changing facility names, Camp Warhorse was renamed Camp Freedom I, with its Arabic translation "Camp Al-Hurya Al-Awal".

By October 2003 soldiers from the 4th Infantry Division were stationed in hangars at Camp War Horse near Baquba [Baqouba], about 40 miles northeast of Baghdad.

The Big Red One officially assumed command from the 4th Infantry Division during a transfer of authority ceremony 16 March 2004. In Baqubah, a TOA ceremony was held between the 2nd Brigade, 4th ID and the 3rd Brigade, 1st ID. The 2nd Brigade Combat Team, nicknamed the Warhorse Brigade, achieved many significant accomplishments during its deployment. From establishing an interim government to administering the Diyala Province and helping rebuild the provincial legal system, the Warhorse Brigade spearheaded the coalition mission in the area. Camp Warhorse served as headquarters to the 3rd Brigade, 1st Infantry Division during its rotation.

From March 2005 the support platoon from C Company of the 141st Engineer Combat Battalion was performing such important missions as installing protective barriers, creating vehicle and personnel checkpoints, building guard towers and constructing dirt berms or dikes. Initially the support platoon, under the direction of Sgt. 1st Class Lee Friese, began their work at FOB Warhorse by leveling areas, building roads and installing force protection structures there. But once the word spread about the excellent work the North Dakota Engineers were capable of doing, they were asked to take their equipment and skills to other areas around Baqubah. This has included building a sterile yard for the inspection of outgoing shipping containers, improving force protection at a bridge on a major Army supply route known as the Blue Babe Bridge, building an earthen berm at FOB Gabe for the protection of the Iraqi National Guard training center, and emplacing other force protection structures at the Kahlis city center for the Iraqi Police, Iraqi National Guard and the mayor's office.

It has been reported that at Camp Warhorse a large indoor souk has been established in the Morale, Welfare, and Recreation facility. There, soldiers can buy fake watches and sunglasses, copies of major European soccer teams' shirts, and various other items, including thousands of illegally copied DVDs.

At FOB Freedom, KBR runs a large mess hall manned mainly by Turks. The food is basically the same thing over and over. They re-use everything. Soldiers say it is like eating at a bad Denny’s restaurant all the time.

FOB Scunion

Foward Operating Base (FOB) Scunion is located directly across from the much larger Camp Freedom I (formerly FOB Warhorse). FOB Scunion is separated from Camp Freedom I by a highway known as "RPG alley". The gym facility at FOB Scunion is said to be excellent and the food is fair.

FOB Comanche

Forward Operating Base Comanche has been closed. It was located in Abu Sayada, outside Baquba.



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