Fielding some of the best Western equipment available, along with training by numerous U.S Special Forces such as the Green Berets, the Iraqi Special Operations Force has quickly become one of the most effective, well equipped and well trained units in the Middle East. There is a growing tension and concern that the ISOF would be used in the same way as Saddam’s Republican Guard, a small private army that answers to one person in power.
According to retired Lt. Col. Roger Carstens, US Special Forces are “building the most powerful force in the region.” In 2008 Carstens, then a senior fellow at the Center for a New American Security, was an adviser to the Iraqi National Counter-Terror Force, where he helped set up the Iraqi counterterrorism laws that govern the ISOF.
"All these guys want to do is go out and kill bad guys all day," he says, laughing. "These guys are shit hot. They are just as good as we are. We trained ‘em. They are just like us. They use the same weapons. They walk like Americans."
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