Some Iraqi Cities Not Ready for Local Control

DefenseLINK:

Places in Iraq like Fallujah are not ready for local control, and U.S.-led coalition forces will not leave an area that’s not secure, Brig. Gen. Mark Kimmitt said today during a briefing in Baghdad.

Fallujah is where gunmen conducted a well-organized guerrilla-style attack on the local jail Feb. 14, killing about 25 people, mostly police, and wounding more than 30. The attackers freed dozens of prisoners at the police station.

“There’s no timeline for local control,” said Kimmitt, deputy director of operations, Combined Joint Task Force 7. “In fact, places like Fallujah are not ready for local control.”

Each city’s situation will determine when coalition forces move to the outskirts of the city, allowing Iraqi security forces to take responsibility, Kimmitt noted. “When the conditions in the city are right, the level of insecurity is down to a certain level, and Iraqi security forces are ready, then the coalition forces will make that determination,” he said.

Pointing out that a clock or a calendar doesn’t make the determination for local control, Kimmitt emphasized, “It’s made by conditions.”

Good to know.

FILED UNDER: Iraq War
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.