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Basra Could Become Another Dubai, Says Regionís Commander
American Forces Press Service ^ | Tuesday, 15 July 2008 | By Jim Garamone

Posted on 07/27/2008 4:23:57 AM PDT by Son House

Security progress in Basra is “overwhelming” and Iraq’s second-largest city could be “another Dubai in the coming decade,” the commander of Multi-National Division - Southeast said July 14, referring to the bustling international business hub.

British Army Maj. Gen. Barney White-Spunner told Pentagon reporters via teleconference from Baghdad that Operation Charge of the Knights - ordered by Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki in March - has “well and truly” turned the tide in the city.

Before the operation, militias controlled large parts of the city. Militia leaders, many under control of Iran, intimidated the populace and turned the city into a crime empire.

Basra is key to Iraq’s success, with oil fields, the port of Umm Qasr and the international airport being economic engines for the region, White-Spunner said.

Since Operation Charge of the Knights began, Iraqi Security Forces have reasserted their authority over the city. “We now find people free to go about their daily business without fear of intimidation,” he said.

Daily life in Basra is much like any other Middle Eastern city, the general said.

An air of normalcy has returned, and the Iraqi government has managed the humanitarian situation with only minimal coalition support, the British general said.

“The curfew's been lifted, and water and fresh food are obviously in plentiful supply,” he said. “At the same time, Operation Charge of the Knights allowed the Iraqi government to arrest hundreds of criminals and violent extremists who'd taken advantage of the situation.”

But more significantly to Coalition forces and the Iraqi government, the operation showed the militias had little support in Basra.

“Once the leadership fled, the ordinary rank-and-file militia … very soon returned to normal life, which supports our contention that they weren't committed terrorists or committed militiamen,” White-Spunner said. “They were poor Shiias who didn't have opportunities for jobs or whatever and have been perverted by the militias.”

Iraqi troops led the operation with advice from embedded military training teams and coalition logistics support.

Continuing the security gains is important to the city’s future. The Iraqis are putting in place a counterterrorist structure so “when those violent extremist elements do try to come back - and some inevitably will - then they're ready for them,” he said. “There was a slogan scrawled on a bridge in Amarah by one of these fleeing violent extremists. It said, ‘We'll be back.’ And underneath that, an Iraqi soldier had scribbled, ‘And we'll be waiting for you.’”


TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: basra; commander; dubai; regions
“The curfew's been lifted, and water and fresh food are obviously in plentiful supply,”

Just having clean drinking water probably means a lot to them folks, no thanks to Democrats, whose rhetoric is chilling to free people who are paying attention to the truth.

1 posted on 07/27/2008 4:23:58 AM PDT by Son House
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To: Son House

That’s all well and good, but i dont want to put them in charge of the US ports.

;-)


2 posted on 07/27/2008 4:28:44 AM PDT by Canedawg
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To: Son House
“Once the leadership fled, the ordinary rank-and-file militia … very soon returned to normal life, which supports our contention that they weren't committed terrorists or committed militiamen,” White-Spunner said. “They were poor Shiias who didn't have opportunities for jobs or whatever and have been perverted by the militias.”

Hmmmmm, I think this guy has been reading my FR posts about Vietnam, circa 1967.

3 posted on 07/27/2008 4:37:42 AM PDT by LZ_Bayonet (There's Always Something.............And there's always something worse!)
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To: Canedawg
That’s all well and good, but i dont want to put them in charge of the US por

Good one!

4 posted on 07/27/2008 4:41:04 AM PDT by SolidWood (Obamarxislamism, the threat to our Republic!)
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To: Son House

The man was never down at Jubail. Basra will be industrial like Jubail, not Industrial like Dubai.

I would think that Bechtel will be hired to do the planning and coordination like the Royal Commission on Jubail and Yanbu.


5 posted on 07/27/2008 4:43:46 AM PDT by bert (K.E. N.P. +12 . Conservation? Let the NE Yankees freeze.... in the dark)
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To: Son House

If Basra does turn into another Dubai, a fully democratic version, there will be no doubt that America won and Bush’s leadership was the reason.

It could also cause a revolution in Iran.

Stupid Dem’s on the wrong side of history again...


6 posted on 07/27/2008 4:44:44 AM PDT by DB
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To: Son House

Son House, this is exactly what we have in the DemocRats;
‘no thanks to Democrats, whose rhetoric is chilling to free people who are paying attention to the truth’
they did try to sell out Iraq and their own country for power, just as they have done with our domestic energy....we must say this clearly and loudly. Nobama and no D-Rats!


7 posted on 07/27/2008 4:54:57 AM PDT by iopscusa (El Vaquero. (SC Lowcountry Cowboy))
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To: Son House
Basra Could Become Another Dubai...

Baghdad Could Become Another...ummm....uh-

8 posted on 07/27/2008 4:59:18 AM PDT by Allegra (Ain't it grand? I'm back in the sand...)
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To: Canedawg

Will they work non-union?


9 posted on 07/27/2008 6:06:45 AM PDT by Son House ( Obama Did Not Earn Freedom, Does Not Appreciate Freedom, Will Not Protect Freedom.)
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To: DB

Funny how all Democrat doom-n-gloom dissipates quickly as the press figures out a new strategy to support Democrat majorities.


10 posted on 07/27/2008 6:10:14 AM PDT by Son House ( Obama Did Not Earn Freedom, Does Not Appreciate Freedom, Will Not Protect Freedom.)
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To: iopscusa

I have been very effective by using the explanation that I am a fiscal conservative to inject support for McCain from obvious middle of the roaders.


11 posted on 07/27/2008 6:13:17 AM PDT by Son House ( Obama Did Not Earn Freedom, Does Not Appreciate Freedom, Will Not Protect Freedom.)
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To: Allegra

I don’t fly or float well, so I’ll have to take your word for it.


12 posted on 07/27/2008 6:14:24 AM PDT by Son House ( Obama Did Not Earn Freedom, Does Not Appreciate Freedom, Will Not Protect Freedom.)
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To: DB

...there will be no doubt that America won...

You mean the Coalition won right???


13 posted on 07/27/2008 7:36:21 AM PDT by Mercia
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To: Mercia

No, I mean America won.

Without American leadership and action Saddam and his sons would still be there doing what they did for all those years before.


14 posted on 07/27/2008 3:16:41 PM PDT by DB
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To: DB

Probably. They would more likely than not be at war with Iran again.

I suppose our history books will include the coalition as a whole. I fair enough. We are perfectly capable of writing our own place in history.


15 posted on 07/28/2008 9:17:47 AM PDT by Mercia
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