View Full Version : Marines try to train a few good cops in Nasiriyah

04-25-03, 09:14 AM
April 24, 2003

Marines try to train a few good cops in Nasiriyah

By Gina Cavallaro
Times staff writer

NASIRIYAH, Iraq - Nasiriyah’s finest are getting a few tips on how to police their neighborhoods, American style.
Their mentors: Leathernecks from 2nd Battalion, 25th Marines a Reserve unit whose headquarters is in Garden City, N.Y.

“We’re not trying to run their police department — we’re just trying to take the experience we have to help them run a well organized force,” said Staff Sgt. Trent Narra, of Weapons Company, 2/25. Narra is serving as a shift commander at one of two main police stations in this city of 300,000, located about 150 miles southeast of Baghdad.

About 50 of the Marines with 2/25 are policemen, most from New York City. One Marine from the unit, Cpl. Sean Tallow, was among the 23 city police officers killed in the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attack on the World Trade Center.

Narra, one of the NYC policemen, said one of the challenges the Marines face in working with the rag-tag Nasiriyah police force, which had a staff of about 3,000 to 4,000 under Saddam Hussein’s regime, is breaking them of the habit of doing business through intimidation, coercion and brute force.

“We’re trying to show them the other approach of coercing through leadership, not intimidation and beatings,” said Narra. “We’re showing them alternate ways of enforcing the law through training, professional appearance, weapons handling and police presence.”

The Marines also must coax the Iraqi police into divulging where they’ve hidden the force’s weapons. So far, they’ve only been able to account for three AK-47s.

“Police farmed stuff out to different areas of the city [before the war]. We’re in the process of getting it back,” said Gunnery Sgt. Andrew Esposito, the station commander.

Most of these Iraqi policemen have little or no training, the Marines said.

“Saddam would take people who were unemployed and make them police officers,” Narra said. They were paid very little.”

It may be a long road to reach the standards of the New York City police force, Narra said, but “with the guidance we give them, they’re going to do good.”



04-25-03, 07:03 PM
Quote:" It may be a long road." End Quote.

Training your replacement in an arab nation may be a long road indeed.

My brother did construction training in Iran.

His response to me? They don't seem to learn because their culture interfears with learning.

Also, a very good freind who was training his replacement in Saudi as an engineer told me that his job would last until his replacement was ready to take over.

My friend spent over 20 years there and then retired.

A long road? More like a road without an end!