Bomb attacks on Iraqi army recruitment center

(What happened today in Diyala province?) The reports we received from our coalition partners is that two insurgents, one in an Iraqi police uniform and one in civilian attire essentially blended in with the crowd and detonated their suicide vests. Today was not a good day. (There have been events like this for the past five years at recruiting centers. How come there hasn't been a solution to this yet?) That's the wrong perspective. Our Iraqi forces, those men know their neighbors and more often they're finding those bombers and disarming them before they detonate. The number is significantly lower than if it was just us, the Americans, trying to find the suicide bombers. (Well then why weren't these suicide bombers recognized today?) We have a lot of programs in place to give the locals an alternative to Al-Qaeda and terrorism, but in some cases it becomes a game of odds. (In the case of some bombings, there's been advanced notice. How do you get that info and what can you do about it?) We receive tips from informants and when you personalize it, these are someone's brother or sister or father who's going out and they don't want their loved ones to be injured. (Why are these recruits lining up?) Because they see a better future for Iraq. (How long have you been in Iraq?) I'm a U.S. Marine, this is my second time here, my first non-combat tour. Last time I was with a Special Police Transition Team, in Baghdad for a while and in Anbar for a while, that was in 2005 and 2006. (So that was prior to the surge. I wonder from your own perspective, what's the difference between then and now?) There seems to be more confidence in the air. Iraqis don't seem as reliant on us now, now I'm seeing a little bit more of a swagger in the Iraqi forces, they've had more success in their operations.

Player utilities

This story is based on a radio interview. Listen to the full interview.