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V Corps Capt. Gareth R. Lintt, left, commander of Headquarters and Headquarters Company, Multi-National Corps/Force-Iraq, places the new combat patch on V Corps’ Staff Sgt. Sheldon Watson of the MNC-I Civil Affairs division.
V Corps Capt. Gareth R. Lintt, left, commander of Headquarters and Headquarters Company, Multi-National Corps/Force-Iraq, places the new combat patch on V Corps’ Staff Sgt. Sheldon Watson of the MNC-I Civil Affairs division. (Kristopher Joseph / Courtesy of U.S. Army)

A group of Germany-based soldiers are the first Europe-based troops in Iraq to wear the new Multi-National Corps-Iraq combat patch, officials said Thursday.

The troops, from the V Corps headquarters element, put the patches on their right shoulders at a March 15 ceremony at the Al Faw Palace on Camp Victory in Baghdad. The wearing of combat patches is a long tradition in the U.S. Army, and signify under which command a soldier served at war.

“Be proud of your new symbol of wartime experience, as it reflects positively about each and every one of you and your continued sacrifice and commitment during this time of conflict,” Lt. Col. Mark Gorton, commander of the Multi-National Corps-Iraq Special Troops Battalion, said in a military news release.

The MNCI patch was approved by the Army’s Institute of Heraldry in January 2005, officials said. The patch itself consists of two waving blue bars (“representing the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers and Iraq’s title as “the land of two rivers”) with a palm wreath above the bars.

An upward-pointing black spear in the center represents “military readiness and might,” the release read. The patch is red, white, blue, black, and green, an amalgam of the U.S. and Iraqi colors.

This is the second time V Corps headquarters soldiers have deployed to Iraq. In 2003, the unit was the command element for the invasion, staying in country for a year.

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