March 19, 2008 —
CAMP TAJI, Iraq (March 19, 2008) – A new era of law was ushered in with the cutting of a ribbon at a ceremony opening the new Iraqi Police station in Shat al Taji March 15.
“Our goal is to serve the people and impose the law on all the people,” said Maj. Gen. Kaadim Hameed Sharhaan al Muhamadani, commander of police, Baghdad.
The large crowd in attendance hung on his every word and nodded in agreement as Muhamadani spoke about the security of the people, the importance of the new police station and what it will bring to the Taji Qada, which lies northwest of Baghdad.
“This is about the security of the people of Iraq,” he said. “Stability and peace were brought here with the help of the Coalition Forces. It is now our time to keep that peace. We will keep that peace by imposing the law for everyone regardless if they are Sunni or Shia.”
Breaking through the sectarian violence and uniting the Sunni and Shia people was the theme of the ceremony. This message rang clearly through the crowd and was echoed by Col. Todd B. McCaffrey, commander, 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, Multi-National Division – Baghdad.
“The concern is the law, not Sunni or Shia, but protecting all,” McCaffrey said.
It was just a year ago that the people of Taji were living in “dark days,” McCaffrey said. There were hardly any businesses open and people lived in fear of terrorists. Today, things have changed in Taji. McCaffrey accredited the peace and stability of the area to the work of the Iraqi Security Forces, which include the Iraqi Police, Iraqi Army and the Abna al- Iraq, or Sons of Iraq.
“We are now in control of our towns,” Kodhom said. “We have strong defenses, and we will no longer let the terrorists prevail.”
The police station project happened in two steps, said Sheik Nadeem Hatem Sultan al Tamimi, a local leader in Taji.
“We first had to take control and rid our town of terrorists,” he said. “Next, we had to establish a police station.”
Now those steps are complete and Nadeem hopes the people of Taji will be happy. They now live in peace, and he encourages them to abide by the laws to help keep the peace that was fought so hard for.
The newly opened police station has approximately 530 police officers.
The officers have gone through rigorous training and are ready to enforce the law, Muhamadani said.“We will do our best to impose the laws,” he said. “No longer will violence prevail.”