Friday, September 10, 2010

U.S. Troops In Iraq Under Operation New Dawn

49,700 U.S. troops remain in Iraq as part of Operation New Dawn, which was announced in President Obama’s speech ending formal combat operations in Iraq. The six remaining U.S. Army units in the country were redesignated Advise and Assist Brigades. The 1st Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division is in Camp Falcon just outside of Baghdad. The 2nd Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division is stationed at Camp Marez, which is part of the Mosul Airport in Ninewa province. The 3rd Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division is at Camp Kalsu in Iskandiriya, Babil. The 4th Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division is deployed at Camp Ramadi in Anbar province. The 3rd Brigade, 4th Infantry Division is at the Talil Airbase in Nasiriyah, Dhi Qar, while the 2nd Stryker Brigade, 25th Infantry Division is at Camp Warhorse in Baquba, Diyala. Each one of these units was given special training for their new mission before they deployed to Iraq, which will focus upon advising the Iraqi forces and providing security for U.S. personnel. The 1st Brigade for example, has small groups of advisers with each of the six Iraqi Army divisions in Baghdad province, and provides helicopter, intelligence, and forensic support to their Iraqi counterparts. 4,500 Special Forces soldiers remain in Iraq as well, along with U.S. troops at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, accompanying the Provincial Reconstruction Teams, and manning checkpoints in northern Iraq with Iraqi and peshmerga forces. There are also U.S. personnel training the Iraqi Navy in Basra, and two aviation combat brigades. In total, these forces are spread across 92 bases, 58 of which are jointly occupied by Iraqi troops. 

Source: Institute for the Study of War
  Map showing the location of the 6 U.S. Advise and Assist Brigades in Iraq (Click on image for larger view)

The change in the name of the operation in Iraq and the brigades deployed there is more than just semantics. In the last year or two Iraqi insurgents and Special Groups have shifted their tactics to focusing upon the Iraqi Army, police, and Sons of Iraq instead of directly targeting Americans. While U.S. forces still come under fire and there are still deaths in Iraq, like a soldier killed in Tikrit by a sniper on August 31 and two more killed by an Iraqi soldier in Tuz Kharmato on September 7, most of this is indirect from rockets, mortars, and IEDs. That means the remaining U.S. soldiers can mostly focus upon working with Iraqi units and providing protection for U.S. civilians, which is the emphasis of Operation New Dawn rather than combat. Their next major hurtle will be whether the Status of Forces Agreement will be amended to allow them to stay past the December 31, 2011 deadline for all American forces to be out of Iraq.


Arraf, Jane, “As Iraq combat operations end, US forces try to cement gains,” Christian Science Monitor, 9/2/10

Aswat al-Iraq, “Sniper kills U.S. soldier in Tikrit before combat troops withdrawal,” 8/31/10

Brannen, Kate, “Combat brigades in Iraq under different name,” Army Times, 8/21/10

Cooper, Helene and Stolberg, Sheryl Gay, “Obama Declares an End to Combat Mission in Iraq,” New York Times, 8/31/10

Cordesman, Anthony, "Update On US Withdrawal From Iraq," Center for Strategic and International Studies, 9/2/10

Global Security, “Baquba Airfield”
- “Iskandariyah”
- “Mosul Airport”
- “Tallil Airbase”

Gordon, Michael and Bumiller, Elisabeth, “In Baghdad, U.S. Officials Take Note of Milestone,” New York Times, 9/1/10

Institute for the Study of War, “U.S. Force Disposition,” 9/1/10

Jaffe, Greg and Fadel, Leila, “U.S. military adopts new role in Iraq,” Washington Post, 9/1/10

Kibbey, Sgt. Benjamin, “Advise and Assist Brigade: A familiar unit with a new mission in Iraq,” U.S. Army, 8/25/10

Londono, Ernesto and Whitlock, Craig, “Despite political uncertainties in Iraq, U.S. sticking with drawdown plan,” Washington Post, 5/14/10

Nordland, Rod, “Exceptions to Iraq Deadline Are Proposed,” New York Times, 4/26/09

Olive Group, “Weekly Security Update for 1st September 2010,” Iraq Business news, 9/1/10

Scott, Sgt. David, “New Iraqi training and advisory mission director visits Umm Qasr,” U.S. Army, 8/17/10

Sly, Liz and Mohammed, Riyadh, "2 U.S. Soldiers Killed In Iraq," Los Angeles Times, 9/8/10

Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction, “Quarterly and Semiannual Report to the United States Congress,” 7/30/10


ISW said...

Hi Joel,

Thanks so much for your support of ISW's work over the years. I am glad to see blogger who care about Iraq since the outcome of that state is very important to America's national security interests.

However, I do need to address one issue. Although I appreciate you sharing ISW's new map on US force disposition in Iraq on your blog, you did edit our work to take out ISW's logo. Anything ISW produces is copyrighted material and therefore cannot be altered without our permission.

I ask that you please use our map in its original form and please correct this issue today.

I'll leave you my contact information if you have any questions.

Many thanks,
Megan L. Ortagus
Communications Director
Institute for the Study of War
mortagus (at) understandingwar (dot) org

Joel Wing said...

Megan I'll add the ISW as the source under the map

ISW said...

Thanks! You are very kind to fix so quickly. We at ISW enjoy reading your blog and will keep coming back!