1st Battalion 22nd Infantry
Battalion Commander's Deployment Summary
Friends and Families of the Regulars,
We are back and I wanted to send
my deepest thanks to all of you that supported us throughout our
deployment to Iraq.
I am happy to report that the Battalion "carried the mantle" of the great history and valor in combat of those before us.
The young men and women of this Battalion represented our prestigious Regiment, with honor and distinction
while deployed to some of the most highly volatile areas in Baghdad. The following is a summary of our deployment
and just a snapshot of the extremely hard work and heroic actions of our Soldiers.
On 12 APR 08, 1st Battalion 22nd
Infantry Regiment assumed authority over Northwest Rashid,
This area had some of the worst sectarian violence in all of Baghdad and was arguably the center of gravity
for the Shia Insurgency. As the main effort for 1st Brigade Combat Team, the Battalion took on the insurgency
with a four company set: C Co in the Northwest, E Co in the Southwest, A Co in the Northeast and D/4-64 AR
in the Southwest. B Co was attached to 2/101st to our North and D Co was attached to 7-10 CAV to our East.
Early on we decided that to break the insurgency we needed to focus our attention in A Company's area of operations.
Throughout the Battalion's Area
of Operations our Soldiers would have to fight to get into the
to start the separation of the insurgency from the people of Northwest Rashid. The aggressiveness of the Battalion
shined as we never backed down and began to take charge of the entire area. Through aggressive targeting
of key individuals and cache sites we started to see success. Alongside our Iraqi Security Force counterparts
we began to turn the tide. The tell tale signs of success were people were no longer afraid to talk to us
while we patrolled the streets. They started to point out areas that the insurgents were using to hide from us.
The people started to point out where the enemy was storing munitions and weapons. Through our intelligence networks
that we had developed we knew that we had broken the back of the insurgency as we killed or captured
more insurgents than any other Battalion in all of Multi-National Division, Baghdad.
The security that was
established allowed for Essential Service contractors to come in
and fix a dilapidated infrastructure
that was barely functioning. Again, this continued to separate the remaining insurgency from the people.
So much so that many turned to us and continued to give us information on more insurgents that were trying
to re-establish in our Area. The security and stability of the area grew exponentially as the Iraqi Security Forces
and the local Government started to take charge of the area. Because of the tremendous success in our Area of Operations,
we expanded (B Co. and D Co. were reattached to the Battalion) and took charge of all of West Rashid
as our sister Battalion from 4-64 AR redeployed back to the United States. Our reputation preceded us and the leaders
of the area were excited to have us in their neighborhoods. Again working closely with our Iraqi counterparts
and the people of West Rashid, we broke the back of the insurgency in all of West Rashid and we could see
the tell tale signs of tremendous progress.
This deployment was exciting to
be a part of. When we left from the Battalion's second deployment
at the end of 2006,
sectarian violence was on the rise, Iraqi security forces could not be trusted and the people of Iraq were fighting
just to scrape by for their families. This deployment we had the opportunity to see and be a part of a significant shift
in the security of Baghdad. Specifically West Rashid - where IEDs and ambushes were the norm
when we first came into the area it was very rare as we were departing. The leadership of the Iraqi Security Forces
are the next generation that is Nationalistic and apolitical. They want one thing - security for their people.
We had the opportunity to see
true patriots of the Iraqi people step up and take the lead in
We saw new schools being opened and old schools being renovated. Electricity was steadily getting better
as the infrastructure was being improved every day. Water and sewage pipes were being repaired and the streets
were being cleaned. The biggest tell tale sign of progress was commerce was happening and people were not afraid to go out
and buy goods for their families any more.
Although I am not naive enough
to think that we were the only reason for this change, as I know
many before us
fought hard to move the "ball" forward, nor am I foolish enough to think that progress will be perfect or without
some setbacks. However, I know that this Battalion laid the groundwork for all this progress to happen.
This Battalion did exactly what I asked it to do and made the area better than when we came there.
The young men and women of the Battalion were out there every day and every night, never backing down from the enemy,
always pushing our counterparts forward, and made the area secure enough for local governance to take hold
of their neighborhoods. We gave the people of West Rashid hope that they do have a say in their government
and in the security of their neighborhood.
This is just a snapshot of the
many heroic deeds of our Soldiers, but what I can confidently
is the reputation of this Battalion and this Regiment remains intact as one of the most professional
and one of the most aggressive units in our Army. I am proud to say that the young men and women
of the Battalion have etched their names in the proud and historic legacy of this prestigious Regiment.
We are Regulars by God.
Deeds not Words,
LTC Matthew Elledge
CO 1-22 IN
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