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Sunday, November 18, 2007

ABOARD THE DOKDO - A South Korean navy sailor signals to a U.S. Navy Seahawk helicopter to land on the flight deck of the South Korean amphibious assault ship ROKS Dokdo Nov. 15, 2007 during the training to increase U.S.-Korean amphibious operational readiness. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Christian Lemus

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As stability returns, Marines move out of neighborhood

Marines with 1st Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, Regimental Combat Team 6’s motor transportation platoon and engineers platoon, secure the tow bar on a seven-ton truck, which transported the last remaining sandbags previously protecting Patrol Base Stafford, which is now being de-militarized, or “de-milled”, because of Company C Marines tremendous success in this area of Al Anbar, Iraq. The Company C Marines with the Bn., live in patrol bases, which are nothing more than a rented Iraqi houses, re-enforced by the battalion’s Engineer Platoon. Machine gun posts are located on the roof. Razor wire runs along the high, blast proof barriers that surround the home. They are designed to provide absolute safety to the Marines who live and work out of them. But here, they are going away.

Nov. 17, 2007
Story ID#: 2007111743518

By Cpl. Bryce Muhlenberg, Regimental Combat Team 6

HABBANIYAH, Iraq (Nov. 17, 2007) -- Marines with third platoon, Company C, 1st Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, Regimental Combat Team 6, have dismantled and de-militarized the patrol base that has been their home for months.

The purpose of patrol bases such as these is to bring Marines as far into a troubled community as possible. This enables them to work closely with the Iraqi Security Forces and residents to improve the area and put an end to violence.

Such intimate integration into the neighborhoods has yielded such positive results that they have effectively worked themselves out of a job. The people have taken responsibility for protecting their community. Iraqi Police have developed into an effective law enforcement organization. Now that these landmarks have been reached, it is time to move out of Patrol Base Stafford.

“We’ve been working with the Iraqi Police in the area, making sure they can do their jobs and helping them with anything they need,” said Cpl. Jayson A. Pihajlic, a 21-year-old squad leader and native of Lake Orion, Mich. “At this point they have everything under control and can handle it all themselves.”

Pihajlic, a 2004 Lake Orion High School graduate, said this de-militarization and move from the area is a small example of the end goal for all of Iraq.

“This is just a model of what we, as Marines specifically, are doing over here, and its working,” he said.

The combat engineer platoon working to pull apart Stafford couldn’t agree more, said Sgt. Christopher G. Frame, a 25-year-old heavy equipment operator.

“We have built or improved over six patrol bases, which is great, but the ‘de-mil’ is also a positive thing, because this will free up Marines to head to another area and do the same thing,” said the Julesburg, Colo., native who is on his third deployment. “It is also good, because an Iraqi man is getting his house back. The platoon leaving means less military force is needed. You look, and there are less and less Coalition Forces and it’s not us doing all of the work. It’s a joint effort between us, the Iraqi Police and the neighborhood watch.”

Once the Charlie Company Marines move out of Stafford, the platoon will start conducting mounted patrols throughout their area of operation.

“We are now only going to be checking in on the IPs to make sure standards are being met,” said Pihajlic. “That’s the way we are doing it. Once we feel they can operate on their own and the area is secured, we move somewhere else to do the same thing.”

As the de-militarization wrapped up, the owner of the house was standing among the Marines and their equipment. The owner, Ahmed Muhsim, said while temporarily losing use of his property was difficult, it was satisfying being part of the solution to bringing stability to his community.

“I’m very happy because I am coming back to my home, but it is very good that the Marines could use my house,” said Muhsim, a farmer. “At first I didn’t think I would get my house back, but it is very well and good, because this area is safe now because of the Marines. I like that.”

1st Lt. David L. Tran, the officer in charge of 1st Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, Regimental Combat Team 6’s engineer platoon, watches as his Marines carefully lower the wooden side of a machine gun post here at Patrol Base Stafford, which was recently de-militarized, or “de-milled”, because of Company C Marines tremendous success in their area of Al Anbar, Iraq. The patrol base is set amongst the farms, fields and people of Iraq. It allows the Marines to get into the heart of the problems faced in the rural communities, which are the focus of the Bn. The purpose of a patrol base is to bring Marines as far into a troubled community as possible so they can work directly with the Iraqis to improve the area and put an end to violence.

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U.S. Army soldiers from the 20th Engineer Brigade build a bridge across the Euphrates River to establish a supply line Nov. 16, 2007, in support of a combat operation near Baghdad, Iraq. U.S. Army photo by Spc. Luke Thornberry

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In Today's News - Sunday, November 18, 2007

Quote of the Day
"This republic was not established by cowards;
and cowards will not preserve it."

-- Elmer Davis

News of Note
Operation Iraqi Freedom

Bombs Strike Children, U.S. Troops in Iraq
Economic Revival Stimulates Southern Baghdad’s Doura Neighborhood
New Primary Healthcare Centers Open in Basrah Province
Army Engineers Turn Over Electric Substation to Iraqi Ministry of Electricity
Iraqi Furniture Factory Fills First Order in Two Years

Operation Enduring Freedom
Taliban Militants Mutilate Policemen - Warning Against Working With the Government
Afghan boy dancers sexually abused by former warlords

Homeland Security / War on Terror / Hamas-Hezbollah Happenings
Olmert to meet Abbas, seek prisoner release

Troops on Trial
U.S. says troops involved in shooting of Iraqis

Other Military News
Report: U.S. Is Helping Pakistan Guard Nuclear Arms

Worldwide Wackos
Iran won't use oil as weapon if attacked: Ahmadinejad

Homegrown Moonbats
Kucinich Attends Army School Protest - PHOTOS

Politics / Government
McCain: It's OK toMake People Mad
Huckabee Rejects Letting States Decide Abortion Rights
Obama Calls Novak Column 'Slime Politics'
CAMPAIGN CARL: Cameron's Blog From the Trail
Clinton Camp Says It Has No Dirty Secrets About Obama After Columnist Bob Novak Suggests Alleged Scandal
White House hopefuls get creative in donation pitches
Clinton camp fires back over column
Edwards criticizes Clinton over Iraq
Huckabee: Abortion not states' call
Clinton library gets 'green' roof
Giuliani addresses energy at NASCAR race
3-D Photo Could Be Lincoln at Gettysburg
Ex-guerrilla wins Kosovo election before showdown
Putin seeks to map Russia's future with election
Japan opposition gets boost from Osaka mayor win
Pakistan: US envoy brought 'nothing new'

In the Courts / Crime and Punishment / Law and Order
Report: Family of Tawana Brawley Wants to Revisit Infamous Rape Case
Arrests Made in Anti-Gay Beating of 'Top Chef' Contestant
Detective: '100 Percent Certain Madeleine Is Alive'
Report: Inmates Wrongly Convicted By Faulty Forensic Tool
Texas Death Row Inmate Wants to Die, But Can't
Father Accused of Biting Off Son's Lip
Missing Woman's Family Pressures Cop Husband
Ex-cop's lawyer disputes autopsy report
Controversial Report: Detroit Nation's Most Dangerous City
Families stay close after murder-suicide
Shooting fuels outcry over NYPD training

Adventures in Political Correctness
Oregon First-Grader Suspended From School After Violent Drawing
Ohio AG in Hot Water Over 'Good Friday' E-mail

Media in the Media / Bloggers in the News / Watching the Web
MTV looks to conquer Middle East market
Broadway stagehands, producers talks off

Science / Medicine and Health / Technology
America's Electronics Recycled Overseas in 'Horrific Way' (Ah, the irony...)
China not fighting off e-waste nightmare
Child health fight grim sign for broader U.S. reforms

Mother Nature
Rescue Effort Scrambles to Reach Remote Villages - PHOTOS
Bangladesh cyclone toll tops 2,300 - Video
Another aftershock strikes northern Chile
Tides could spread oil spilled in SF Bay
Japan fleet sets off to hunt humpbacks

Tree Man Grows 'Roots'
"Spiderman" returns to China for publicity stunt

Fox News
Dozens Missing in Ukrainian Mine Explosion - PHOTOS
Man Dies After Maryland Deputy Uses Stun Gun
Angelina Jolie Strips Down and Gets a Hit
Amy Winehouse’s Former Teacher Reaches Out to Singer

Auto sales could hit 15-year low
In Europe, weak dollar wrecks Americans' dreams
OPEC summit ends in division over weak dollar
Adventurous young Chinese hit backpacking trail alone
Move over Paris. Forbes ranks interesting heiresses
"Beowulf" slays bees at weekend box office
Garner seeks "Truth" with Gervais
Stocks up, oil gains boost energy shares
Oil climbs toward $95 on U.S. dollar concerns
Democrats to benefit in health sector
Pharma CEOs see risk-averse climate
Celgene to buy Pharmion for $2.9 billion
AT&T may bid for EchoStar by year's end: Barron's
Siam Cement plans $3.7 billion Vietnam chemical project
RBS CEO informally approached for Citigroup: report
Wilbur Ross sees 2008 U.S. auto sales below 16 mln
Ritual dating from 1919 sets price of gold

AP World News
Brits hail Queen's diamond anniversary
Daughtry wins 3 American Music Awards
Patriots rout Bills
Dempsey ponders role as 2nd sexiest man
Johnson claims 2nd straight NASCAR title
Jets pull off OT stunner over Steelers
Carr stepping down as Wolverines coach
Kansas reaches new heights in AP Top 25
Berlin Philharmonic performs with kids
Federer wins 4th Masters Cup in 5 years

CENTCOM: News Releases

Command continues preparations for multinational effort
More about Multinational Experiment 5
Allied Command Transformation, U.S. Joint Forces Command honor outgoing commander, welcome new leader
Read Gen. Mattis' remarks - Listen to the podcast - photos
Commands bring together experimentation leaders
Newsmaker Profile: Command Sgt. Maj. Mark Ripka

Multi-National Force-Iraq
Multi-National Division-North Soldiers attacked in Baqubah
Sinjar Investigator’s Course qualifies 17 in basic forensics
Iraqi Forces, U.S. Special Forces detain two extremists in As Sa’diyah
Coalition forces disrupt al-Qaeda foreign terrorist and propaganda operations; 27 detained
101st Airborne’s Strike Brigade sends Dagger Brigade homeward bound (Camp Liberty)

Bush Thanks Japanese Prime Minister for Support - Photos
Army Must Adapt To Changing Threats
Furloughs Possible Without More Funding

Team Assesses Salang Situation
Troops Detain Suspected Terrorist

Americans Can Text ‘Thanks’ to Troops - Video
Musicians Create CD To Thank Troops

Marine Helps 'Awaken' Anbar Province

Commander Says Violence Down Significantly
Iraqi Contractor Rebuilds Hope with Hammers
Team Helps Iraqis Build Institutional Operations
Coalition Forces Kill 2, Detain 12 Terrorists
Officials Believe Iran Stemmed Weapons Flow

Fathers, Sons Serve Together in Iraq

Bost/Laskar Ghurian Herat Kabul Qandahar

Ansbach Aschaffenburg Berlin Berlin-Tempelhof Berlin/Schonefeld Bremerhaven
Darmstadt Frankfurt Frankfurt/Main Freiburg/Breisgau Garmisch
Garmisch-Partenkirchen Geilenkirchen Gelnhausen Giessen Kitzingen
Hanau Am Main Heidelberg Mainz Mannheim Nurnberg Stuttgart Trier
Wiesbaden Wurzburg


Agana Agana Heights Agat Andersen AFB Asan Barrigada

Al Azamiyah Al Basrah Al Hillah Al Karkh Al Kazimiyah Al Kut
An Nasiriyah Baghdad Baqubah Mosul Najaf Nineveh Tall Kayf

Kadena Air Base Okinawa Tokyo Yokohama

National Hurricane Center

Today in History
- William Tell shoots an apple off his son's head.
1421 - The Zuider Zee floods 72 villages, killing an estimated 10,000 in the Netherlands.
1497 - Bartolomeu Dias discovers the Cape of Good Hope.
1755 - The worst quake the Massachusetts Bay area has seen strikes Boston; no deaths are reported.
1776 - Hessians capture Fort Lee, NJ.
1803 - At the Battle of Vertieres, the Haitians defeat the French.
1820 - U.S. Navy Captain Nathaniel B. Palmer discovers Antarctica.
1883 - Standard time zones are established by railroads in the U.S. and Canada.
1889 - The Oahu Railway begins public service in Hawaii.
1903 - The Hay-Bunau-Varilla Treaty gives the U.S. exclusive canal rights in Panama.
1905 - Prince Carl of Denmark becomes King Haakon VII of Norway.
1909 - The U.S. invades Nicaragua, later overthrowing President Zelaya.
1911 - Britain flies its first seaplane.
1912 - Albania declares independence from Turkey.
1913 - In San Diego, Lincoln Deachey performs the first airplane loop-the-loop.
1918 - Latvia declares independence from Russia.
1928 - Walt Disney's Mickey Mouse debuts in "Steamboat Willie."
1929 - A large quake in the Atlantic breaks the Transatlantic cable in 28 places.
1936 - Germany and Italy recognize the Spanish government of Francisco Franco; the main span of the Golden Gate Bridge is joined.
1940 - George Matesky - the Mad Bomber - makes his first time-bomb.
1943 - Ray Atherton is appointed as the first U.S. ambassador to Canada.
1955 - The Bell X-2 rocket plane is taken up for its first powered flight.
1960 - The U.S. Copyright Office issues its 10 millionth registration.
1961 - The U.S. Ranger-2 is launched to the Moon; it fails.
1964 - J. Edgar Hoover describes Martin Luther King, Jr. as a "most notorious liar."
1966 - U.S. Roman Catholic bishops do away with the rule against eating meat on Fridays.
1970 - Russia lands a self-propelled rover on the Moon.
1976 - Spain's parliament establishes a democracy after 37 years of dictatorship.
1985 - The Space Shuttle Enterprise (OV-101) flies from Kennedy Space Center to Dulles Airport Washington, DC, where it is turned over to the Smithsonian Institution.
1990 - Saddam Hussein offers to free an estimated 2,000 men held in Kuwait.
- Muslim Shites release hostages Terry Waite and Thomas Sutherland.

- Alan B. Shepard, Jr., Rear Admiral USN / astronaut (Mercury-3, Apollo-14); Ted Stevens (Sen-AK)
1928 - Mickey Mouse
1929 - William (Pete) Knight, X-15 pilot
1951 - Mark N. Brown, Major USAF / astronaut (STS-28, STS-48)

- Chester A. Arthur, 21st U.S. President
1962 - Niels Bohr, physicist, Nobel Prize winner (1922)
1969 - Joseph P. Kennedy, politician, Kennedy patriarch
1978 - Leo J. Ryan (Rep-CA) and four others killed in Jonestown, Guyana by members of Jim Jones'
Peoples Temple, followed by the ritual mass suicide of over 900 members, including Jones.

Reported Missing in Action
Arnold, William T., USN (WI); A4C crashed at sea

Burdett, Edward B., USAF (GA); F105D shot down, DIC November, 1967 - remains returned by DRV March, 1974

Dardeau, Oscar M., Jr., USAF (LA); F105D shot down, remains returned November, 1987

Hauer, Leslie J., USAF (MI); F105D shot down, remains returned June, 1977

Lehnhoff, Edward W., USAF (KS); F105D shot down, remains returned November, 1987

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