It’s not the future if you’re in California.
The US Army news reported Sg Maj Teresa King started her new role at Drill Sergeant School this week; a career worth following, for sure.
In Iraq, S&S’s Heath Druzin picks up the story I’ve been watching play out closely: Iraqi prisoner releases as the handover from NATO/American forces to Iraqi security forces continues.
What happens next, though, has many in Iraq concerned, and one senior Iraqi officer says the prisoner releases have fueled recent insurgent violence. “It seems to me that everyone who was released from (Camp) Bucca has returned to their old jobs and is attacking the security forces again,” said Iraqi army Col. Abul Razaq Jasim, who is responsible for operations across a large swath of Diyala province. Many former detainees find it hard to secure jobs because of the stigma of imprisonment, making a return to violence the only way to make money. Others simply never changed and are feared to have rejoined the insurgency, Iraqi and U.S. military officials.
Clearly this is part of the public plan to prepare for and begin withdrawing from Iraq, putting in place further goals for 2010 post-election. But despite the gains Iraq has made socially, politically, and economically since 2006, I can’t help but wonder how premature this handover is. Whatever is said about the public disgraces the US forces have faced with regard to detaining and imprisonment, you can’t say it wasn’t effective. I remain unconvinced that there is adequate infrastructure in place to fully prepare for this transition; the number of news stories coming out addressing exactly this doesn’t really help but fuel my concern.
More tomorrow, if Sunday doesn’t push the brunch agenda and eat away the entire day.