Iraq Air Force Closes In On Full Control

I guess I missed this story in the Big Media (from DefenseLink)

The Iraqi Air Force is working to gain complete control of support operations from Coalition forces to add to the maintenance operations already under its charge.

Formerly located at Ali Air Base near the city of An Nasiriyah in south central Iraq, the 23rd Squadron has not only changed its location to New Al Muthanna Air Base in Baghdad, but also the focus of its operations tempo.

“When the squadron was at Ali base, the training was just on aircraft qualification,” explained U.S. Air Force Maj. Dave Osterhout, Coalition Air Force Assistance Transition Team operations chief. “Iraqi airmen were responsible for very little in regards to scheduling. Now the goal has shifted to getting them ready to run their own squadron-type operations,” he said.

The squadron is working to take full control of flying operations through scheduling, training, life support, weapons and tactics operations and planning staff functions. In addition to these functions, it will also maintain complete administrative oversight of the unit.

Pretty incredible, eh? Bet you wish that news like this was making it out there through the normal channels, too.

One of the interesting highlights on the story is how the US is changing how the chain of command operates. While the story doesn't mention this, the Iraqi military was very much based on the Soviet model, where the officers made all decisions, period. There was no latitude to do anything, even by the noncomms. So, things did not get done.

Now, those at the lower ranks, who are really the do-ers, are being given the latitude, empowered, you might say, to do what needs to be done.

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