Heavy Brigade Combat Team Focuses On Rebuilding Assistance
Forward Operating Base Hammer, Iraq
The events that have occurred in and around Salman Pak have run the gamut. From insurgent attacks to the current calm relatively secure environment, there has been quite a difference.
Staff Sgt Robert Butler has seen it from the beginning, and knows how differently the Salman Pak of today is compared to a year ago. Sgt Butler is with the Headquarters Company, First Battalion, 15th Infantry, 3rd Heavy Combat Team, and 3rd Infantry.
Sgt. Butler has helped provide security, fought terrorists and insurgents, and lost several friends.
“There are still some things to be done, it is not possible to focus totally on economic improvement while security still needs work,” stated Sgt. Butler.
The former Iraqi resort town has a lot of possible renewal, according to Butler. He believes that it still has potential and is ready for renewal. The opening recently of the courthouse in the town of Salman Pak, along with a lot of work being done by the 489th Civil Affairs Battalion is evidence of the positive changes that are happening.
Working with the Iraqi National Police, and the Concerned Local Citizens, the 3rd HBCT has seen and enjoyed the grudging respect of the Iraqi people. At first the citizens shied away and were distrustful.
“When we started here, the people of Salman Pak were stand-offish, but slowly they have learned to trust us,” remarked Butler. “They are seeing how much their town has improved and that we are here to help them,” said Sgt. Butler.