The Iraqi Army School of Infantry NCO II (SINCO II) has received another upgrade to its urban infantry training program, thanks to a building blocks construction system, similar to Lego.
The Australian government has gifted the school, based at Taji Military Complex (TMC) near Baghdad, a new military operations in urban terrain training facility.
Captain Jeremy Duff, of Task Group Taji 8 (TGT-8), said the new facility was built from EverBlocks – large plastic bricks that fit together much like the popular toy.
"It is essentially a plastic modular block system, which allows us to create numerous building designs in order to meet the complexities of training," Captain Duff said.
Several RAAF C-17 flights and semi-trailer loads were required to deliver the EverBlock system to TMC.
Captain Duff said the new facility would significantly enhance the instructors' ability to deliver comprehensive urban warfare training.
“It will have a lasting effect on the Iraqi Army, as the old wooden facades only lasted a few months, but this new system will last for up to 10 years,” he said.
"These plastic modular bricks can be used to make any type of structure, both complex and simple.”
Australian and New Zealand soldiers built the new facility, block-by-block, with the assistance of SINCO II instructors.
Captain Jonty Hooson, of the New Zealand Army, said one large, and two medium-sized buildings were built over two days, in temperatures above 40 degrees.
"It's been challenging building this facility, especially with the heat,” Captain Hooson said.
“The hardest part has been building the floor, but once we got the foundations sorted, the rest was a breeze."
The Australian and New Zealand-led task group is part of the US-led coalition effort to enhance the capability of the Iraqi Security Forces.