2003 May 15 Thursday
US Occupation Forces Move To Restore Order In Iraq

The US has stopped the draw down of forces in Iraq until order is restored.

BAGHDAD, Iraq, May 14 The Third Infantry Division has been told to stop sending troops home and to step up patrols, a move that reflects mounting concerns within the Bush administration about security in Baghdad, military officials said today.

US forces allow Iraqis to keep guns in their homes.

U.S. forces allow Iraqi families to keep one rifle in their houses for protection but insist it remain inside. Any weapons spotted in the streets are confiscated and destroyed.

The use of trash collection to help restore order is right out of the "Broken Windows" theory of crime prevention.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. forces stepped up security patrols and began trash collection in a bid to create a sense of order in postwar Baghdad, U.S. officials said on Thursday.

More troops are being brought in to do security patrols.

Units with some 230 Humvees are flowing into the area Thursday and Friday and other troops also are on their way from staging areas in Kuwait, he said.

Paul Bremer, the new administrator for Iraq, vows to return to jail the 100,000 criminals that Saddam Hussein released.

Bremer noted that 100,000 inmates were released from Iraqi prisons in October by Saddam political prisoners and common criminals alike. ''It's time those people are put back in jail,'' Bremer said.

It has taken a month of mounting criticism to get the Bush Administration to start moving more forcefully to restore order in Iraq. This should not have been necessary.

Update: One encouraging sign is that gun prices are rising in Baghdad.

One indication of US success is that the price of an AK-47 in Baghdad has increased from $8 a few weeks ago to more than $80 now, analysts say.

Share |      By Randall Parker at 2003 May 15 12:17 PM  Reconstruction and Reformation


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