Sunni City No Longer As Violent As Once Was
The city of Ramadi has nearly a half million residents, and it was for many years one of the most dangerous cities and violent during the beginning of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Since those early days things have really turned around. Local citizens work in the marketplace, and children play soccer in the local field.
As the security has improved the signs of war have decreased. Students walk in relative peace and security to classes at the Al Anbar University. Much has changes, and nearly all for the better since the early days, and the surge has a lot to do with the changes.
Members of the Marine Corps 1st Battalion, 9th Marine Regiment, Regimental Combat Team 1 has worked to train and assist members of the Iraqi Security Forces. As their training level has increased, the Marines have been able to step back, and let the ISF forces take care of the different security operations, including patrols.
The Marine Corps have been preparing for the eventual withdrawal from the Ramadi area. They have seen it all during their two consecutive tours in Iraq. They have seen the region transformed from an area of insurgent activity, to one where kids play and relax.
The need for heavy combat trained troops has largely passed, but only because of the professionalism of the Iraqi Security Forces, whom have been able to take over from the Coalition on into the future.