April 27, 2008 —
A squad of Iraqi policemen move alongside a wall and scan their sectors of fire outside the Tarmiyah Iraqi police station while conducting counter insurgency training on April 17.
CAMP VICTORY, Iraq (April 28, 2008) – The citizens of Tarmiyah have seen a substantial reduction in violence over the past four months, which can readily be seen throughout the vibrant market places midday on April 17 as consumers packed the markets to purchase needed goods from vendors.
“Things have been very quiet in Tarmiyah over the past four months,” said Staff Sgt. Mikey Fernandez, who is attached to Troop A, 1st Battalion, 14th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team “Warrior,” 25th Infantry Division, Multi-National Division – Baghdad.
“You would not see the markets the way they are now four months ago. The people of Tarmiyah are no longer afraid to come out of their homes,” added the New York native.
Fernandez said he credits the city’s success in fighting violence to the fact that the Iraqi army, Iraqi police and Sons of Iraq in Tarmiyah are all working together to reduce criminal activity in the area.
“The combination of the three – IA, IP and SoI – working together to improve security is what has helped decrease violence here in Tarmiyah,” said Fernandez, who mission is to oversee the Iraqi army training of the Iraqi police at the Tarmiyah local police station.
“There is a constant Iraqi security force presence in Tarmiyah,” he added.
There are SOI checkpoints set up down the winding roads on the way to the Tarmiyah city center, and ISF and CF security patrols constantly travel the routes while checking on security.
The ISF not only work together on the streets, but they also are seen working together while training to become more proficient in performing their missions.
Fernandez, an Iraqi police advisor, along with members of the 411th military police company police transition team, oversee the training of the Iraqi police force at the Tarmiyah Joint Service Station.
“There is no language barrier when the Iraqi army instructors teach the IP,” said Fernandez. “This makes the classes run smoother, and the IP respond very well to the IA instructors.”
The training consisted of foot patrol training, entry control point training, detainee operations, how to setup a security perimeter and room-clearing procedures.
Following the long day of training, Craig Chrissinger, an Iraqi police adviser, who oversees the training of the IP at the Tarmiyah station, sat down and conducted an after action review with the IP about the days training.
“They know the basics; they just need to keep practicing when they get chances to perfect their skills,” said Chrissinger, a native of Denver.
“The hardest thing to do is find time when the IP aren’t on shift to train them in advanced tactics to further their skills,” said Chrissinger.
At the end of the day, the IPs thanked the instructors before heading off on mission to further deter violence in their city.