Skip to content

Preparations for U.S. Iraq withdrawal in full swing

COS KALSU, Iraq — At a US base south of Baghdad, trucks plod in either direction amid a hive of activity: with the clock ticking on a year-end withdrawal from Iraq, preparations are in full swing.

Located in the centre of Iraq, just 50 kilometres (30 miles) south of the capital near the town of Iskandiriyah, Contingency Operating Site Kalsu forms a crucial transit hub for the tonnes of materiel and thousands of soldiers moving out of the country, mostly towards Kuwait, in the coming two months.

The massive logistical operation has to be finished by December 31, in line with a security pact between Baghdad and Washington that US President Barack Obama said was on track this month.

“It’s pretty big,” said Captain Mark Alfers, the commander of the 606th Movement Control Team, a logistics unit on COS Kalsu.

“We’ve been here for eight-plus years, so there’s just eight-plus years worth of equipment trying to get out of a single point.”

Thanks to its strategic location, along the main thoroughfare heading south through Iraq, COS Kalsu will likely be one of the final five American bases left in the country, said Lieutenant Colonel Jason Hayes, commander of the 2nd Battalion of the 5th Cavalry Regiment.

It will be handed over to the Iraqi army along with a portion of materiel, but the exact date of its handover remains a secret for security reasons.

COS Kalsu serves as a “go-between for the smaller bases and the bigger hubs such as Kuwait or (Joint Base) Balad,” a sprawling US base north of Baghdad, Alfers said.

As a result, between two and 20 convoys of up to 50 trucks apiece stop in Kalsu on their way south to refuel, and for passengers and drivers to get some rest.

Major General Jeffrey Buchanan, spokesman for US forces in Iraq, said that in the early part of October, 399 convoys with 13,909 trucks were used for the pullout in a single week.

At COS Kalsu, along with the countless flat-bed trucks and other vehicles, dozens of MRAPs — “Mine Resistant Ambush Protected” troop carriers — sit between rows of concrete blast walls that line the base’s outer perimeter and parts of its interior.

Nearby, containers are piled up on top of each other, waiting to be carried out of the country, lugged out by contractor-driven trucks that regularly come and go.

Much of the military equipment remains hidden for security reasons.

“The biggest challenge is that this drawdown only happens once a war, once a conflict, so you can plan and plan for it but the plans keep changing,” said Alfers. “You have to keep the enemy on their toes, so you can’t really publish a plan.”

These operations have been ongoing for several months, but Obama’s October 21 announcement that all US troops would leave Iraq by year-end quashed any remaining speculation over potential for an American military training mission beyond 2011.

“The withdrawal operation really started to become big about a month ago,” said Major Frank Cruz, a logistics officer on COS Kalsu. “Now, it’s only getting busier.”

Like his soldiers, Hayes does not yet know when he will finally leave Iraq. As to where they will go, some are hoping for a country less austere, like Germany, while others are looking to spend Christmas with their families.

Around 39,000 American soldiers remain in Iraq, stationed on 15 bases, including approximately 3,000 on COS Kalsu. That compares to peak figures of nearly 170,000 soldiers and 505 bases in 2007 and 2008.

Many of those still here have sent most of their belongings home and are living on the bare minimum.

And they are not the only ones who do not know when they will be leaving.

“The Iraqis would like to know as well — it’s frustrating,” said Captain Ryan Edwards, commander of Bravo Company, 2nd Battalion, 5th Cavalry Regiment.

Edwards added that he was confident his domestic counterparts, whom he had been training for much of his deployment, were “ready”.

Hayes painted a more nuanced picture of the forces Iraq would be left with.

“There’s some security concerns,” he noted. “I think the Iraqi army and police are capable of handling the current threat situation.”

“I think if we saw a serious increase in violence, especially if that increase was caused by external influences, I think it could possibly exceed their capacity.”

He added: “If it exceeds their capacity then my hope is that they’ll be able to raise their hand and ask the world community for help. … Whether they will or not that’s the big question.”

Related Posts with Thumbnails

Posted in Middle East.

Tagged with , , .

Support #altnews & keep Dark Politricks alive

Remember I told you over 5 years ago that they would be trying to shut down sites and YouTube channels that are not promoting the "Official" view. Well it's happening big time. Peoples Channels get no money from YouTube any more and Google is being fishy with their AdSense giving money for some clicks but not others. The time is here, it's not "Obama's Internet Cut Off Switch" it's "Trumps Sell Everyones Internet Dirty Laundry Garage Sale".

It's not just Google/YouTube defunding altenative chanels (mine was shut), but Facebook is also removing content, shutting pages, profiles and groups and removing funds from #altnews that way as well. I was recently kicked off FB and had a page "unpublished" with no reason given. If you don't know already all Facebooks Private Messages and Secret Groups are still analysed and checked for words related to drugs, sex, war etc against their own TOS. Personally IU know there are undercover Irish police moving from group to group cloning peoples accounts and getting people booted. Worse than that I know people in court at the moment for the content they had on their secret private group. Use Telegrams secret chat mode to chat on, or if you prefer if you need to or buy a dumb phone with nothing for the NSA to hack into if you are that paranoid.

So if your not supporting this site already which brings you news from the Left to the Right (really the same war mongering bollox) then I could do with some. Even if it's just £5 or tick the monthly subscription box it will be much appreciated. Read on to find out why/


Any support to keep this site would be appreciated. You could set up a monthly subscription for £2 like some people do or you could pay a one off donation as a gift.
I am not asking you to pay me for other people's articles, this is a clearing house as well as place to put my own views out into the world. I am asking for help to write more articles like my recent
false flag gas attack to get WWIII started in Syria, and Trump away from Putin. Hopefully a few missiles won't mean a WikiLeaks release of that infamous video Trump apparently made in a Russian bedroom with Prostitutes. Also please note that this article was written just an hour after the papers came out, and I always come back and update them.

If you want to read JUST my own articles then use the top menu I have written hundreds of articles for this site and I host numerous amounts of material that has seen me the victim of hacks, DOS plus I have been kicked off multiple hosting companies, free blogging sites, and I have even had threats to cease and desist from the US armed forces. Therefore I have to pay for my own server which is NOT cheap. The more people who read these article on this site the more it costs me so some support would be much appreciated.

I have backups of removed reports shown, then taken down after pressure, that show collusion between nations and the media. I have the full redacted 28/29 pages from the 9.11 commission on the site which seems to have been forgotten about as we help Saudi Arabia bomb Yemeni kids hiding in the rubble with white phosphorus, an illegal weaapon. One that the Israeli's even used when they bombed the UN compound in Gaza during Operation Cast Lead. We complain about Syrian troops (US Controlled ISIS) using chemical weapons to kill "beautiful babies". I suppose all those babies we kill in Iraq, Yemen, Somalia and Syria are just not beautiful enough for Trumps beautiful baby ratio. Plus we kill about 100 times as many as ISIS or the Syrian army have managed by a factor of about 1000 to 1.

I also have a backup of the FOX News series that looked into Israeli connections to 9.11. Obviously FOX removed that as soon as AIPAC, ADL and the rest of the Hasbra brigade protested.

I also have a copy of the the original Liberal Democrats Freedom Bill which was quickly and quietly removed from their site once they enacted and replaced with some watered down rubbish instead once they got into power. No change to police tactics, protesting or our unfair extradition treaty with the USA but we did get a stop to being clamped on private land instead of the mny great ideas in the original.

So ANY support to keep this site running would be much appreciated! I don't have much money after leaving my job and it is a choice between shutting the server or selling the domain or paying a lot of money just so I can show this material. Material like the FSB Bombings that put Putin in power or the Google no 1 spot when you search for protecting yourself from UK Police with "how to give a no comment interview". If you see any adverts that interest you then please visit them as it helps me without you even needing to give me any money. A few clicks per visit is all it takes to help keep the servers running and #altnews alive!

However if you don't want to use the very obvious and cost free ways (to you) to help the site and keep me writing for it then please consider making a small donation. Especially if you have a few quid sitting in your PayPal account doing nothing useful. Why not do a monthly subscription for less money instead. Will you really notice £5 a month?

0 Responses

Stay in touch with the conversation, subscribe to the RSS feed for comments on this post.

Some HTML is OK

or, reply to this post via trackback.