The training and equipping of the Iraqi security forces was a significant accomplishment, especially because the ISF were organized, trained, equipped, and then put directly into combat operations with our forces. The transition team and partnership programs enabled us not only to complete the training and equipping of the ISF in an active combat environment, but also to instill in them the qualities of a professional military operating under civilian leadership.
The quantitative growth of the ISF is shown below, from approximately 90,000 trained and equipped military, police, and border forces in July 2004 to over 325,000 by the end of January 2007, a growth of over 3.5 times.
The qualitative growth of the Iraqi army was equally dramatic. In June 2005, we began monthly reporting on army and national police units to track their progress. There was a four-fold increase in army battalions conducting operations independently or with coalition force support (TRA 1 and 2) between June 2005 and January 2007 (24 in June 2005, 96 in January 2007)—a period of only 19 months.
The improvement in national police battalions was not as dramatic, due largely to their infiltration by sectarian influences in the summer and fall of 2005, which required the retraining of all national police units. Each brigade was pulled offline, its leadership purged of sectarian influence, and then retrained.
Graph A4-1. Iraqi Security Forces Growth
Graph A4-2. Army Transition Readiness Assessment Growth
Graph A4-3. Special Police Transition Readiness Assessment Growth