Paramilitary: U.S. MPs Join Iraqi Police

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August 3, 2006: The U.S. has agreed to help Iraq in an aggressive effort to clean up a corrupt police force. The Iraqi police, and various paramilitary security forces, have become infiltrated by partisans of various warlord organizations (especially the Shia and pro-Iran Sadr and Badr groups), criminal gangs and even terrorist groups. In addition, many cops, and their commanders are on the take, or simply for sale. The American assistance will take the form of more trainers, more technology and, perhaps most importantly, U.S. Army military police (MP) advisory teams. By putting hundreds of American military police out on the street with Iraqi police, some dirty cops will clean up their act for a while, but the MPs will be able to observe the Iraqi police at close range and provide a more reliable and independent view of exactly what is going on inside the force. The embedded American MPs are not going to reform the force. The Iraqis have to do that. But more eyes, ears and experience will be a big help. The new Minister of the Interior, who controls the police, has promised to find and fire corrupt and disloyal police. The results, if any, of this, will be evident by the end of the year.

 


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