Dear C/1-9 CAV (VN) Family,
I printed all your emails and gave them to the scouts. They really got a kick out of them, realizing that our history runs deep not just here in Iraq in our guidon's second year, but Vietnam and Cambodia as well. Thank you also for your kind words of encouragement, thoughts and prayers. No one else knows better how much we need them, since about 40 years ago you were in a similiar situation.
I just wanted to bring ya'll up to speed on what's going on with C/1-9 CAV. Our callsign is no longer Cavalier, it is Crazyhorse. I'm not sure when this change happened, but Crazyhorse was the C/1-9 CAV callsign during OIF II and when 1-9 CAV was a part of the 3rd BDE, 1st Cavalry Division at Fort Hood, TX. Crazyhorse or Cavalier, to me there's still no difference... I still think it is awesome that the C/1-9 CAV lineage continues on, under any callsign, and that this brotherhood stays networked. I've attached a few pictures of the scouts working with Iraqis and where we live for your entertainment.
Right before I took command, the Troop was a land-owning unit that controlled half of the huge city of Mosul in northern Iraq. Literally two hours after the change of command ceremony, we saddled up in our Up-Armored HMMWVs and rode West to our current location of FOB Sykes. With this new location came a new mission. The Troop left our old mission as a "land-owning" unit in Mosul to take on a Training/Advisory capacity. 1st Platoon specifically works with the Iraqi Border Police. 2nd Platoon specifically works with the Iraqi Army. Overall we will be working with the troop & platoon level Iraqi Security Forces (ISF), training a small cadre of Iraqi instructors, who will then go on to train their own countrymen, with us watching, coaching, and mentoring their training. Finally, each training session will culminate in a combined patrol, ambush, checkpoint, etc. that relates to the previous training. We are the fi rst active component squadron to be integrated and purely dedicated to this type of mission. A lot of generals will be looking at 1-9 CAV and specifically Crazy Horse as the model for the rest of Iraq as we seriously transition to putting the onus for security on the Iraqi people. As long as our US Brigades, Squadrons/Battalions, and Troops/Companies own and secure Iraqi land, the longer Iraq will be held back from true independence, and the longer our scouts and soldiers will be required to deploy and return to Iraq. I truly believe in the words of T. E Lawrence when he said in 1917, "Do not try to do too much with your own hands; Better the Arabs do it tolerably than that you do it perfectly. It is their war, and you are to help them, not win it for them." The better the Iraqi Security Forces become, the less likely we will be required to come back here 2-3 years from now. So until we get a change of mission, we will be working the Iraqi Army and Border Police hard to improve and carry the burden of security.
I must admit, they have come a long way since I was here last. Last time I was here two years ago, my unit would in the winter come up on an Iraqi Army checkpoint and find that 90% of the soldiers had abandoned their posts and the two soldiers left were burning their kevlar helmets to stay warm. Today you see Iraqi Army HMMWVs everywhere, they run professional checkpoints, and actually patrol regularly without Coalition Forces. The Iraqi Army is slowly becoming a formidable force, but has also been the main focus of the Coalition. The focus of effort is now shifting more and more towards the police, border guards, and logisitics folks. So as you well know, war is hell, but there is progress being made. And that progress is being made because of the outstanding Americans, like my scouts, busting their humps to make Iraq better and keep America safe. Enjoy the pictures. We'll try and get a Troop photo with some helicopters (probably Kiowa Warriors) before we leave to send to ya'll.
CPT, AR Commanding
C Troop, 1-9 CAV, 4BCT
FOB Sykes, APO AE 09351
P.S. "We Can... We Will" is still the squadron motto.
SSG Barnett teaches map reading to Iraqi Army SSG Isgett, SSG Owens, SSG Cruz Teach Actions
On Contact to Border Police in a Border Fort
CrazyHorse HQ Bunker Crazyhorse riding off into the desert haze Iraqi Border Fort HQ