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Multi-National Corps-Iraq

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Multi-National Corps-Iraq, according to the American Forces Press Service, is one of two new military commands that "will stand up in Iraq effective May 15, 2004, to replace the current coalition military organization" Combined Joint Task Force 7 (CJTF7). Army Lt. Gen. Thomas F. Metz will command the Corps. [1]

The second command is Multi-National Force-Iraq, which will be commanded by Army Lt. General Ricardo S. Sanchez, former commander of CJTF7. [2]

On September 16, O'Dwyer's PR Daily reported, "The U.S. government is soliciting proposals for an 'aggressive' and comprehensive PR and advertising push in Iraq to convey military and diplomatic goals to Iraqis and gain their support."[3]

The planned PR campaign, similar to earlier work done by British PR firm Bell Pottinger Public Affairs for the Coalition Provisional Authority, will include "daily advice on dealing with local and international media; planning for outreach to various segments of Iraqi society like Kurds, Sunnis, Shia, and former Iraqi military; weekly reports on Iraqi public opinion; standard press products like B-roll, press packets, and news releases, and the recruitment and media training of Iraqis who would become employees of the PR/ad firm and serve as military and non-military spokesmen for Coalition Forces." Another goal is to set up a "Rebuttal Cell," to monitor all media throughout Iraq and "immediately and effectively responding to reports that unfairly target the Coalition or Coalition interests."[4]

At the time of the O'Dwyer's story, MNC-I was "currently soliciting" bids and couldn't "release any information on firms pitching for the work." Contract stipulations included that the PR firm hired would have to hire its own "Coalition-approved security personnel," would "not be permitted to travel alone in the country," but would not be "allocated a military escort."[5]

Mission

"Multi-National Corps-Iraq conducts offensive operations to defeat remaining non-compliant forces and neutralize destabilizing influences in Iraq in order to create a secure environment. Concurrently, conducts stability operations to support the establishment of government, the restoration of essential services, and economic development in order to set the conditions for a transfer of sovereignty and operations to designated follow-on authorities."

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