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Members of Company D, 2nd Battalion, 27th Infantry Regiment "Wolfhounds" gather around their squad leaders Monday before a mission to meet civic leaders in three towns near Hawijah.
Members of Company D, 2nd Battalion, 27th Infantry Regiment "Wolfhounds" gather around their squad leaders Monday before a mission to meet civic leaders in three towns near Hawijah. (Ben Murray / S&S)
Members of Company D, 2nd Battalion, 27th Infantry Regiment "Wolfhounds" gather around their squad leaders Monday before a mission to meet civic leaders in three towns near Hawijah.
Members of Company D, 2nd Battalion, 27th Infantry Regiment "Wolfhounds" gather around their squad leaders Monday before a mission to meet civic leaders in three towns near Hawijah. (Ben Murray / S&S)
Capt. Roland Keller, left, from Company D of the 2nd Battalion, 27th Infantry Regiment "Wolfhounds," looks over some paperwork Monday with Mohammed Ahmad Hussain, mayor of the town of Riyadh, at a weekly city council meeting.
Capt. Roland Keller, left, from Company D of the 2nd Battalion, 27th Infantry Regiment "Wolfhounds," looks over some paperwork Monday with Mohammed Ahmad Hussain, mayor of the town of Riyadh, at a weekly city council meeting. (Ben Murray / S&S)
Testing his skills against a group of boys from the village of Kwazi Arab near Riyadh, Iraq, 1st Sgt. Billy Cheney from Company D of the 2nd Battalion, 27th Infantry Regiment tries to stop a kick Monday from a youngster. Company D visited the town on a periodic visit to discuss civil improvement projects, and handed out candy and soccer balls to the kids.
Testing his skills against a group of boys from the village of Kwazi Arab near Riyadh, Iraq, 1st Sgt. Billy Cheney from Company D of the 2nd Battalion, 27th Infantry Regiment tries to stop a kick Monday from a youngster. Company D visited the town on a periodic visit to discuss civil improvement projects, and handed out candy and soccer balls to the kids. (Ben Murray / S&S)
Capt. Roland Keller and the muktar of the village of Kwazi Arab watch a soldier play soccer with local kids Monday after a meeting between the two about upcoming improvement projects in the town.
Capt. Roland Keller and the muktar of the village of Kwazi Arab watch a soldier play soccer with local kids Monday after a meeting between the two about upcoming improvement projects in the town. (Ben Murray / S&S)

RIYADH, Iraq — In an area where large tracts of farmland surround small, poor centers of hostility toward U.S. forces, one of the main jobs of the 2nd Battalion, 27th Infantry Regiment operating out of Forward Operating Base McHenry, southwest of Kirkuk, is to help local people improve their civil services.

To do that, soldiers regularly send patrols out to the various towns and small villages to meet with local leaders and provide them with funds for projects such as water infrastructure improvement or basic street cleaning — or as was the case recently in the restive city of Riyadh, to cut off that funding when the projects don’t get finished.

On Monday, members of Company D made the rounds to the towns of Riyadh, Kwazi Arab and Al Dammak, to visit village leaders and have a little fun with the kids.

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