Book "But Ma'am, the security" : the manning of the New Iraqi Army / Patricia Brasier.
Publication year: 2008.
Call Number DS79.76 .B61 2008
Media class: Book
Publisher: [West Conshohocken, PA] : Infinity Publishing
ISBN: 9780741444028 074144402X
C. 1 has been inscribed and autographed by author.
"In order to understand what I did while I was assigned as the Head Recruiting Officer for the Coalition Military Assistance and Training Teams (CMATT) it is necessary to understand the environment." -- Prologue, by author, P. i.
Includes chapter entitled: Acronyms.
Extent: xii, 270 p. : ill., maps, photos. ; 22 cm.
In August 2003, Coalition Military Assistance Training Team (CMATT) Mission was "to man, train and equip nine Infantry Battalions with limited capability by 1 Aug 04, a small coastal defense force, and the beginning of an aviation element in order to establish the foundation of the Iraqi Armed Forces run by Iraqis." This mission was modified to an objective of three Army Divisions manned, trained and equipped by early 2006. As the CMATT C1 (Personnel Officer) my task was the "manning" of the Iraqi Armed Forces: to screen, recruit (ethnic balance), establish structure, pay conditions of service and to provide a foundation for selection of an officer corps. In the beginning she had four US military personnel working with her, only one had experience in recruiting. A short time after her arrival LtCol Brasier met Iraqi workers who were computerizing the former Iraqi Army military records and assisting her team in the development of a personnel system for the New Iraqi Army. One of the first Iraqi civilians working with Lt Col Brasier was Mr. Jabbar, a former Iraqi soldier. His English was not very good at the time, but it got better each day, especially after he started teaching the C1 staff and anyone who wanted to join us the Arabic language. He explained both Arabic alphabet and how Arabic letters were written in English. To facilitate our recruiting programs CMATT wanted to have involvement from of the soldiers from the first graduating battalion. The first two were assigned to my office to assist with recruiting. During the officer selection process at Kirkush Military Training Base (KMTB) both Ahmed and Abbas were selected as Majors - the panel consisted of staff from KMTB and from the palace, their prior rank was known but their performance at KMTB was given greater value. MAJ Ahmed had been a Major in the old Army; whereas, MAJ Abbas had been a Captain, but had performed well in his training at KMTB and selected to be a Major. As the section chief, my
responsibility was to provide guidance to and set an example on how a field grade officer should conduct themselves. My goal was that they were to be treated as part of the staff, which meant that they were to be working and not just sitting around. We would have some of the most entertaining discussions comparing our different types of customs. For example, their most common response to any job I gave them was "Inshalla", which means "God willing" it will happen or it will be done. My response the first time was "no more Inshalla" - I was not insulting their "God" but was implying that there was a job that would be done, when it was supposed to be done, whether their "God" assisted them or not. They did take my comment in the spirit given and had a good chuckle over it. I would learn it was all about the tone of voice, it was not that the job would not be done without "God's help" it was a matter of when it would be done. They would also share this story with people that they met in the Palace. One time as soon as I said I was the CMATT recruiting officer, the response I received was "no-more Inshalla, I've heard about you." The whole staff was entertained when the my Navy Lieutenant (LT) and Army Staff Sergeant (SSG) taught the Majors that the proper way to address a senior female officer was to say "Ma'am" not "Sir." Pretty soon, if they were looking for me, they would say "where is the ma'am?" My nickname amongst my staff would become "the ma'am." Their first mission was to meet their fellow graduates from Mosul at the Recruiting Center there and start working on recruiting officers for our new training evolution that would possibly take place in Jordan. Nagging concerns this week were getting them weapons and a car. The weapons were a legitimate security concern due to the environment. My patience would begin to be tested as they had no problem barging in and saying they needed to talk to me about something. Usually it would be something totally unrelated
to what was
1. Background : CMATT'S evolving mission -- 2. Our plan and our beginning -- 3. First Battalion goes on training leave -- 4. Trip to Jordan -- 5. First four students to Jordan -- 6. C1's first Iraqi employee -- 7. First Battalion graduates -- 8. Personnel processing decisions: setting up policies -- 9. Thursday nights and Fridays in the Green Zone -- 10. "But Ma'am the security" -- 11. The Adkins Diet meets going to AL' Ristamyah -- 12. The one who stayed behind -- 13. The band -- 14. Location, location, location: traveling outside the Green Zone -- 15. Pay issues -- 16. Trailer life -- 17. Ramadan -- 18. Media Training -- 19. Interviewing officer candidates: a couple of days at the Baghdad Recruiting Center -- 20. Hiring translators for 10 days at Tadji -- 21. Tadji: First Company grade officer induction -- 22. Establishing a medical corps -- 23. Finding qualified non-commissioned officers -- 24. Field grades: processing at Tadji -- 25. Starting the new year with LTC Ahmed and MAJ Abbas -- 26. Baghdad Recruiting Center vehicle borne improvised explosive device -- 27. 2004, where are they now? -- 28. 2007, where are they now? -- 29. US military ranks and titles.