Citizen Patrol Group Uncovers Large Explosive Cache
Acting on a tip, CLC citizens in Tuwaitha found a cache of high explosives. The Concerned local citizen group turned the weapons over to the 3rd Heavy Brigade Combat team.
Some of the explosives were rather homemade.
“Every incident where weapons are discovered by the CLC, and then turned over to our forces, that is one or more lives that have been saved,” said Major Desmond Bailey. Major Bailey is the Operations Officer for the 3-1 Cav. Regiment.
More and more it is evident that the citizens and local Iraqi people are becoming vested in keeping the peace. When Coalition troops first arrived there was a lot of mistrust. Some of the Iraqi citizens supported Al-Qaida. Often those that did not support Al-Qaida did not trust Coalition soldiers enough to give up information, either.
All that has largely changed.
“The amount of explosives and weapons, the sheer volume that has been turned over lately tells us we are beginning to be trusted,” said 1st Lieutenant Timothy Eng. Lieutenant Eng is an engineer in Headquarters Troop, 3-1st Cav Regiment.
Company D executed Operation Tuwaitha Sunrise last October, and they were matched with a number of local Concerned Local Citizens groups. At first, the CNC citizens were wary, and not willing to trust very far. Now, the CNC sees coalition troops as partners, and most of all, as friends.
“It is a huge difference from a year ago, or even from six months ago. We are really seeing the benefits from our time here, and our patience is being rewarded,” said Lieutenant Eng.