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  1. #1
    Jenna's Avatar
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    U.S. soldiers will need search warrants in Iraq

    U.S. soldiers preparing for raids study maps, examine photos of wanted men and check their weapons. Starting next month, they'll have to go see a judge.

    For nearly six years, American troops have been free under a U.N. mandate to search any home and detain anyone deemed a security risk.

    All that changes next month, when the mandate expires and a U.S.-Iraqi security agreement takes effect. From then on, troops must obtain Iraqi warrants for searches and arrests and U.S. officers say the requirement is one of the biggest headaches in complying with the new rules.

    "It takes away the option of saying, 'Hey, this guy just came into town and we want him and we want him now,'" said Capt. Tom Smith, a company commander on his second tour in Iraq. "For some of us who were here before, it feels a bit slow."

    U.S. troops are scrambling to learn the ins and outs of an Iraqi legal system with unfamiliar rules and procedures, a cumbersome bureaucracy and a shortage of judges after years of violence.

    The Americans are having to turn to their Iraqi colleagues for help in navigating the system. They're also trying to improve it, working with the Iraqi investigators to enhance their evidence-gathering techniques, such as the use of biometrics and forensics.

    Iraq forces already need warrants
    The Iraqi government began requiring its own security forces to obtain warrants after a series of offensives in the spring against Shiite extremists drew sharp criticism from rival political parties complaining their members were being unfairly targeted.

    In recent operations, that has meant flying judges from Baghdad to targeted cities to expedite the process.

    The U.S. military is about to face the same rules. The security pact states that as of Jan. 1, American troops may not search homes or make arrests without warrants "except in the case of active combat operations."

    That will be a big change for the U.S. military one of several required under the security pact that allows the Americans to stay for three more years but imposes stricter oversight on their behavior.

    The agreement was ratified by Iraq's presidential council on Dec. 4, and U.S. and Iraqi commanders are now meeting to lay out guidelines for how the new rules will work on the ground.

    U.S. soldiers particularly special forces have in the past staged raids without consulting the Iraqis when going after time-sensitive targets. Commanders have long been concerned about extremists infiltrating the Iraqi security forces.

    "It's a challenge and we're working through it," said Lt. Col. Jim Bradford, commander of the 1st Combined Arms Battalion, 63rd Armor Regiment from Fort Riley, Kan. "Warrants come from multiple locations and so we're working through that as well."

    Process causes concern
    It's not just the need for warrants that's raising concern. It's also the process.

    To get a warrant in Mahmoudiya, troops will have to appeal to four Iraqi judicial investigators in the town, unless the Iraqi army brigade happens to have a warrant for the same individual.

    Bradford, 39, of Lynchburg, Tenn., said his battalion began preparing for the shift shortly after taking over operations in Mahmoudiya last month. His soldiers are trying to match up their list of wanted men with those of the Iraqi security forces and obtain warrants before the end of the month.

    "It's just a matter of making sure that our warrants match their warrants and everything is correct," he said. "They have been doing warrant-based operations since we've been here."

    Rules cover 'high value targets'
    Soldiers will need warrants not only for low-level insurgents but also so-called "high value targets," meaning key figures in Sunni and Shiite militant groups.

    "If we had information about a high-level al-Qaida in Iraq guy, for us to go after him we would work the warrant piece," he said. "What we're trying to do now ... is everyone that we consider to be a high-value target and the Iraqi army considers to be a valuable target is to work all of those warrants now," he said.

    For the U.S. soldiers, that means spending a lot of time at the copy machine as they try to organize the warrants already held by the Iraqis, said Smith, 29, of Norman, Okla.

    He acknowledged that the system will take some getting used to.

    "Their system is very paper-based, whereas we like to have it all in an Excel spreadsheet," he said, standing in his base office underneath a strategic map and a red Christmas stocking hung on the wall.

    Capt. Jessica Donckers, the commander of the 65th Military Police Company Airborne from Fort Bragg, N.C., is focusing her efforts on training Iraqi police to work with judges on getting warrants as well.

    Detainees reduced
    The number of police detainees in Mahmoudiya has been reduced by 50 percent in the last two weeks because of improvements in streamlining the process, said Donckers, 29, of Marquette, Mich.

    The rule would not affect troops under fire or facing an imminent threat, such as a suspected suicide bomber, although evidence and witnesses would be needed to support any action.

    "Things will not change for the Iraqi army, but it will be a huge change for the U.S. troops to need an Iraqi warrant," Defense Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Mohammed al-Askari said. "The change will be for the best and it will stop the random raids."

    Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

    URL: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/28258334/

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    The Associated Press
    updated 6:03 p.m. ET, Tues., Dec. 16, 2008

    MAHMOUDIYA, Iraq -

  2. #2
    Five-0's Avatar
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    Bullshit.

    Meanwhile, fishing in Russia:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SkzV5AIK8iM
    "When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men living together in society, they create for themselves in the course of time a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that justifies it." -- Frederic Bastiat

    "Certainly there is no hunting like the hunting of man and those who have hunted armed men long enough and liked it, never really care for anything else thereafter." Ernest Hemingway

    The opinions given in my signatures & threads DO NOT reflect the opinions, views, policies, and/or procedures of my employing agency. They are my personal opinions only, thereby releasing my agency of any liability, or involvement in anything posted under the username "Five-0" on Officerresource.com

  3. #3
    MacLean's Avatar
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    Confusing the military with police is not a good idea.
    I'm your huckleberry...

    Quemadmoeum gladis nemeinum occidit, occidentus telum est!

    You can be the weapon, and the gun in your hand is a tool - or the gun is a weapon and you are the tool.


    I was looking for a saint who was a devil of a lover,
    but every girl I found was either one way or the other...



  4. #4
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    armsmaster270 is offline Ret. Sac. P.D. - 270th M.P. Co., Now with D.H.S.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Five-0 View Post
    Bullshit.
    +1


    Pretty women make us BUY beer. Ugly women make us DRINK beer. --Al Bundy

    http://www.armsmaster.net-a.googlepages.com

  5. #5
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    a crock of.....

    The lawyeristas will be hanging so much paper there the locals will no longer have to use dried goat shit for cooking fires. If the locals can figure how to use old legal paper to hurt our people, they will.

    More "make work" and guaranteed fees to collect for the lawyers of the Lawyer Party. They never served so they do not know or care of the difference between military and law enforcement except as abstractions they can exploit to make money. The Lawyer Party has proven more respect for criminals and terrorists than our troops, that will be more obvious as time passes.
    Some people come into our lives and quickly go. Some stay for awhile and leave footprints on our hearts. And we are never, ever the same.-- Anonymous

    Old People, like me, may not be around to witness the destruction of our Nation. The rest of you may not survive the collapse. We all have the sworn duty to prevent it.

    The light of hope burns brighter than the fires of doom.

  6. #6
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    I don't know. If we're going to be handing the country back over to their people, I don't see a problem with giving them a bigger sense of control. I really haven't formed a solid opinion yet, just playing devil's advocate here.
    "If everyone is thinking alike, then someone isn't thinking." -Gen. George S. Patton

  7. #7
    Five-0's Avatar
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    I see your point Rhino, but if it is our service men that are keeping the peace. I say let them do it the way the military does it. That way would be searching out enemy combatants and killing/capturing them. With the systematic corruption of the Middle East I see a lot of insurgents getting an early warning of any action against them for the right price. When the Iraqis are in control of that country the can risk their necks any way they see fit.

    Meanwhile, fishing in Russia:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SkzV5AIK8iM
    "When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men living together in society, they create for themselves in the course of time a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that justifies it." -- Frederic Bastiat

    "Certainly there is no hunting like the hunting of man and those who have hunted armed men long enough and liked it, never really care for anything else thereafter." Ernest Hemingway

    The opinions given in my signatures & threads DO NOT reflect the opinions, views, policies, and/or procedures of my employing agency. They are my personal opinions only, thereby releasing my agency of any liability, or involvement in anything posted under the username "Five-0" on Officerresource.com

  8. #8
    lewisipso's Avatar
    lewisipso is offline Injustice/Indifference/In God we trust
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    "It takes away the option of saying, 'Hey, this guy just came into town and we want him and we want him now,'" said Capt. Tom Smith, a company commander on his second tour in Iraq. "For some of us who were here before, it feels a bit slow."
    No shit Sherlock. Welcome to our world. The military are not police officers. I agree with Maclean 100%.
    Do not war for peace. If you must war, war for justice. For without justice there is no peace. -me

    We are who we choose to be.

    R.I.P. Arielle. 08/20/2010-09/16/2012


  9. #9
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    Wow. Just wow. Military combat operations requiring warrants. Incredible.

  10. #10
    Blue Steel is offline Rookie
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    It's a nightmare sometimes to get a search warrant to kick a door down here in the US. I can only imagine how difficult it will be to get an Iraqi judge out of bed at 3 am. This will cost lives.

 

 

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