Joint Effort Restores Railway Service
There are railway tracks that cross and re cross Iraq, but there are never any trains that run on them. Train service of any type has been discontinued for years, in many places it’s been over ten years since any trains have operated.
But recently, there has been an effort to restore rail service to some different areas in Iraq.
In the Taji area to the north of Baghdad, efforts are being made to resume rail service. The trains and rails that run into the Taji Qada are being focused on for repair and rejuvenation.
After many weeks of work, a test run was held last Wednesday using a refurbished locomotive that ran through the gates of Camp Taji.
“We are performing this work to help restart the Iraqi railroad, so it can carry goods and transport people,” said Captain James Kerns. Captain Kerns is the assistant Operations Officer for 2nd Battalion, 11th Field Artillery. By getting the rails repaired and the train back on track it is hoped that personnel, goods, and material can be moved swiftly and quickly.
The railway from Mosul to Baghdad is hoped to be repaired this year, and this is work that is going forward regardless by Al Qaeda or other terrorist insurgents. The train repair and entire track and railway project is getting done by Iraqi’s with direct U.S. oversight.
“This is changing the face of Taji, and of Iraq. The railroad is going back in, it’s an enduring mission,” said Major Henry McNealy. Major McNealy is operations officer for Camp Taji base defense command.