BASRAH, Iraq — It requires practice and training for elite Iraqi Special Operations Forces (ISOF) to perform at the highest level. To better their ability to protect the citizens of this second-largest Iraqi city, some ISOF Soldiers recently conducted an urban assault training exercise in southern Iraq.
“If we want to be successful on missions it requires us to not only train daily, but it’s necessary for us to do it right each time,” said an ISOF sergeant major. “If we learn from our mistakes now, we will be more effective during the missions.”
“The more training we do, the less likely I am to forget what is important during the mission,” said an ISOF squad leader with the company. “I look at our training like soccer; If you want to be successful in soccer, you have to keep practicing. You practice different moves and different techniques so that you will be better than your opponent.
“The same goes for training like this,” the squad leader added. “The more we do it, the better we will be at protecting the people.”
One way Soldiers are getting better trained is through close-quarters combat exercises. To improve in this area, ISOF Soldiers built a ‘shoot house,’ a structure designed to represent an urban environment.
The shoot house is located inside a warehouse set up for both day and night scenarios.
The Iraqi squad leaders and commanders constructed the house with interchangeable walls, allowing them to change the rooms around to make sure Soldiers don’t get too comfortable, said a Coalition forces advisor.
“They use furniture inside the rooms to make it more realistic and to add more of an obstacle as they clear the rooms,” the advisor added.
“We built a shoot house and designed it to look more like houses we see in the city,” said the sergeant major. “The more realistic we make the training, the less likely we will make mistakes during the mission.”
To that end, the Iraqi 6th Regional Commando Battalion trains daily to ensure their skills are honed for success when they carry out operations.
“Most of our missions will consist of close quarters like in the shoot house,” the sergeant major said. “With this training, our Soldiers are more capable of protecting the people of Basrah.”