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Measuring Stability and Security in Iraq

June 2008
Report to Congress
In accordance with the
Department of Defense Appropriations Act 2008
(Section 9010, Public Law 109-289)


Section 1-Stability and Security

1.4 Transferring Security Responsibility

Currently, half of Iraq’s 18 provinces are under Provincial Iraqi Control (PIC). In support of the U.S. Government strategic objective to strengthen the Iraqi forces and transition primary security responsibility to the GoI, Anbar and Qadisiyah Provinces are scheduled to transition to PIC in June and July 2008, respectively. This will bring the total number of provinces for which the GoI has lead security responsibility to 11 of 18 provinces.

In PIC provinces, Iraqi forces demonstrate varying abilities to maintain domestic order and prevent a resurgence of terrorism. Examples of this are the recent ISF-led operations in Basrah. On short notice and with little Coalition planning support, the ISF were able to rapidly deploy forces to the city to engage rogue militias. Once operations were underway, the ISF required Coalition Military and Police Transition Teams and Coalition staff assistance to obtain and move logistics assets to support its forces in the field. The Transition Teams proved particularly helpful in their ability to increase Iraqi and Coalition forces’ situational awareness and facilitate employment of additional Coalition enablers. As operations progressed, many Iraqi forces grew increasingly competent and were able to restore security in much of the Basrah area within one week.

Contingency Operating Base Turnover Status

The current basing footprint supports the Joint Campaign Plan’s COIN efforts as MNF-I transitions from 20 to 15 BCTs. MNF-I continues to co-locate with the ISF on existing Coalition Contingency Operating Bases (COBs) as the mission transitions from leading to partnering to overwatch. MNC-I manages the process to transfer or close a COB. Key to this consideration is retention of the security gains that have been achieved in a particular area. The conditions-based strategy ensures that sufficient installations remain open to allow commanders the flexibility required to execute COIN operations. As conditions allow, MNC-I will continue to seek opportunities to shrink, share or transfer bases. MNF-I is actively seeking partial base turnovers to the ISF or partial base closures for specified COBs, Contingency Operating Sites (COSs) or Contingency Operating Locations (COLs) that are no longer required. As of May 31, 2008, MNF-I tracks 61 total bases (COBs and COSs) and more than 250 COLs in Iraq. Since January 2008, MNF-I has closed and transferred two COSs (Hurricane Point and Blue Diamond) to the GoI. Additionally, MNF-I is scheduled to transfer COS Habbaniyah to the GoI during the fourth quarter of calendar year (CY) 2008.

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