2004 Battalion Time Line
~ 720th Military Police Battalion Reunion Association History Project ~
This Page Last Updated   22 December 2011
89th Bde.
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At the start of the year the Battalion was headquartered subordinate to the 89th MP Brigade, III Corps at Fort Hood, TX.
13 January - Kirkuk, Iraq In an early morning raid in Kirkuk, troops of the 720th MP Battalion, acting on Iraqi-provided information, detained four nephews of General Ibrahim Al-Duri, vice chairman of the Revolutionary Command Council, sixth on the coalition's list of the 55 most-wanted former regime officials and the most important resistant on the loose. They are accused of providing help to their uncle and are under interrogation.

24 January, 0910 Hours - Samarra, Iraq A truck bomb exploded at 9:10AM near government buildings in Samarra, about 70 miles north of Baghdad, barely missing a 401st MP Company patrol parked across the roadway from the government building while awaiting Iraqi Police to join them in a joint patrol of the city. The blast killed four Iraqi civilians and wounded about 40 people. There were no U.S. soldiers wounded in attack, inside or outside the building. The soldiers inside the government building were in the middle rooms and suffered brief hearing loss and ringing in their ears.

Four (4) members of one of the 401st MP Company squads parked on the roadway were outside of their vehicles at the time of the explosion. 1LT Alexis Marks, SSG Donnie Jones and SGT Tina Costa were knocked to the ground by the blast. CPL Seth A. Johnson was in the turret of his vehicle and was struck with shrapnel on the left side of his kevlar vest and knocked down into the interior of the vehicle. He lost his hearing for approximately an hour. The team leader, SGT Kristy Martin, and the medic, SGT Brown, checked the squad members for wounds and found none.

The explosion set fire to a half-dozen cars parked near the buildings, which included a police station and municipal offices, and gouged a large crater in the street.

CPT Jennifer K. Knight the Commanding Officer of the 401st was in Tikrit at the time of the incident and responded to the scene arriving at approximately 1100 hours (11:00AM).


7 March - Kuwait The 64th MP Company, 720th MP Battalion, 89th MP Brigade, in Kuwait waiting to return to Fort Hood, Texas after service during Operation Iraqi Freedom-I.




3 April, 0200 Hours - Operation Iraqi Freedom III Under the command of CPT Chris Kasker the 410th MP Company 169 strong, was deployed for the second time to the Iraqi theater.

Upon arrival into the theater, the company conducted a transfer of authority from the 1165th (Alabama National Guard) and 2175th (Missouri National Guard) Military Police Companies and immediately began operations within their Area of Responsibility (AOR).

The initial configuration of the company was all platoons were located at Camp Falcon (Al Rashid) with two Guardian M1117 Armored Security Vehicle (ASV) teams tasked out to provide support to the Marines in the city of Fallujah.

The company was attached subordinate to the 231st MP Battalion (National Guard Headquarters Unit, Prattville, Alabama) at Camp Graceland/Falcon just outside of Baghdad.


One Platoon from the 410th Military Police Company was chosen to be the Personal Security Detail (PSD) for the Battalion Commander. The missions to which the company was assigned were: check point operations, cordon and searches, Armored Security Vehicle Common Remotely Operated Weapons Station (ASV/CROWS) training, 31st Combat Support Hospital detainee ward security, forward operating base tower security, area security, high value detainee security escort and various convoy escorts.

The 410th was also tasked to train, assess, and mentor numerous Iraqi police stations in Baghdad to include: Al Daura, Al Bilat, Al Khadra, Al Mammon, Al Ghazalia, Abu Ghraib, Al Yarmuk, the Organized Crime Unit, and the Major Crime Unit Detention Facility.

The Battalion Returns To Fort Hood, Texas
20 April - Fort Hood, TX Starker Gym was the scene of another jubilant homecoming for troops returning from Iraq. The homecoming for troops chiefly from three units marked another celebration of a job well done for Fort Hood soldiers. Family, fellow troops and commanding officers gathered to welcome home soldiers from III Corps' 720th Military Police Battalion in addition to members of the 4th Infantry Division.

22 April - Fort Hood, Texas During a grand award ceremony Thursday at Gauntlet Field, the 720th Military Police Battalion (minus the 410th still on duty in Iraq) received praise and awards from the 4th Infantry Division's commanding general, MG. Ray Odierno.
Odierno said he was honored to celebrate the return of the great soldiers from Task Force Gauntlet that had been attached to Task Force Ironhorse.
"They made a real difference in Iraq, it's hard to explain to people here, but the change in Iraq is phenomenal," Odierno said. "They conducted operations in the toughest area of Iraq, right in the middle of the Sunni Triangle."
Odierno went on to explain that no matter what mission he asked the troops to accomplish, they always completed it on time and with honor. More than 500 troops from the battalion received the Army Commendation Medal, while the company commanders received Bronze Stars for their service.
The highlight of the ceremony was the presentation of medals to four of the battalion's members who deserved special honors.
1LT Darrell Hunter received the Bronze Star for Valor and the Army Commendation medal; SFC Milton Nation received the Bronze Star and the Purple Heart; SSG Antoine Taylor received the Bronze Star and Purple Heart; and SSG Michael S. Hernandez revived the Army Commendation medal and Purple Heart.

Battalion commander LTC David J. Poirier said the large turnout at Thursday's event was a wonderful show of support for the hard work the troops did while in Iraq.
"The soldiers don't get enough credit for their sacrifices," Poirier said. "I'm proud of them; they did a lot of great things. I could talk all year long about the things they accomplished, but I'll just say they showed lots of initiative."
The battalion worked closely with the 4th Infantry Division's 1st Combat Team to capture Saddam Hussein and many members of his regime. One of the final missions the 720th Military Police conducted was rebuilding and reforming the police force in Samarra in support of Operation Ivy Blizzard. Units from the battalion had significant roles in many security operations, including running Detainee Collection Point operations in Tikrit, Kirkuk and Baqubah. CPT Jennifer Knight from the 720th Military Police Battalion's 401st Company said that the troops worked hard to complete their mission at all costs.
"Our main effort was quelling unrest in Samarra, Knight said. "It was challenging, but Samarra is a better place because we accomplished our mission."
By Zac Sorenson, Killeen Daily Herald, 30 April 2004.

If you can identify the companies of the honorees presented medals or provide any photographs of the ceremony, please contact the History Project Manager Tom Watson via the Email Link at the top of this page.

19 May - Fort Hood, TX More than 350 Fort Hood military police participated in the Central Texas Law Enforcement Torch Run. Texas law enforcement agencies raise public awareness for Special Olympics by annually carrying the torch across the state to the Texas Special Olympic Summer games, where it is used in the opening ceremonies to light the ceremonial flame. The summer games were held this year May 21 - 23 in San Marcos.

"We, as Soldiers, have a responsibility to support our nation," said MAJ John Bogdan, acting commander, 720th MP Battalion. "As MPs we are also a part of the law enforcement community and supporting this event is part of our civic responsibility."

 Photo M00064: Smith Middle School Students cheer as MAJ John Bogdan, acting commander, 720th MP Battalion (carrying the torch) and other Fort Hood MPs pass along Tank Destroyer Road during the Central Texas Law Enforcement Torch Run.

Fort Hood MP units that participated in the torch run included HQ Company, 89th MP Brigade, HQ Detachment, 720th MP Battalion, 411th, 401st, 149th, 64th, and 4th MP Companies and 178th MP Detachment.

   The Provost Marshall's Office helped coordinate the run with local law enforcement. Members of the Copperas Cove Police Department passed the torch to Bogdan at the intersection of Old Georgetown Road and Copperas Cove Road on Fort Hood's west boundary. MPs then carried the torch nine and one half miles along Tank Destroyer Road to the East Gate where they passed the torch to members of the Killeen Police Department.

"When I saw them come running down the road towards us and the formation seemed never ending, I was in awe," said SGT Sandra Hunt, one of the KPD officers who accepted the torch from the MPs. "We have always had awesome support from Fort Hood when it comes to Special Olympics. They are an essential part of accomplishing what we need to accomplish in this area."

During the run, the MPs were greeted by hundreds of students who lined the side of the road at Smith Middle School and Meadows Elementary School. As the runners passed, students cheered, held up banners and waved flags. Many of the students have parents who are returning from overseas deployments, currently deployed, or scheduled to deploy, said Sandra Forsythe, the Smith Middle School principal. This was an opportunity for her students to show support not only for Special Olympics, but for their families she said. "There has not been much joy this year for many of our students," she said. "It was amazing to feel the energy and the release of emotions as they cheered and it shows how much kids need opportunities to show support for Soldiers and their families."

The MPs were surprised to see the students who had gathered to support the run, said Bogdan. "It was great to see that the kids were able to come out and support us," he said. "It was very motivational for all of us to hear them cheering and see them waving the flags."  Edited from an article by SPC Jason Phillips, 89th MP Brigade PAO.


Exact date unknown - Baghdad, Iraq The 410th Military Police Company qualified the first female gunner of an Armored Security Vehicle Common Remotely Operated Weapons Station (ASV/CROWS) in the Iraqi theater.

9 June - Fort Hood, TX The Battalion change of command ceremony was held at the 89th MP Brigade gymnasium. LTC David J. Poirier passed the Battalion colors to LTC Robert M. Taradash as CSM William Generali  looked on.

25 June - Fort Hood, TX The 720th Military Police Battalion recognized members of their Soldiers Of The Gauntlet who distinguished themselves during combat in support of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM during a ceremony. Among those honored were some of the MPs of the 64th MP Company 2nd Platoon "Wolfpack," who participated in the defense of the ICE convoy in Sammura, Iraq on 30 November 2003.

28 June - Baghdad, Iraq The Coalition Provisional Authority  (CPA) established as a transitional government following the invasion of Iraq by the United States and the other members of the multinational coalition which was formed to oust the government of Saddam Hussein on 21 April 2003, dissolved its authority.

1 July - Baghdad, Iraq The 410th MP Company provided landing zone security, quick reaction force, inner and outer perimeter security, escort security, and traffic control points for Saddam Hussein's historic preliminary hearing before the Iraqi Special Tribunal.

Exact date unknown - Waldorf, Maryland An award plaque was presented to Militec-1 by Tom McKeon, President of the 720th MP Battalion Reunion Association, headquartered in Florida.

        The plaque was received by Russell Logan, Vice President of the Waldorf, Maryland company, in recognition of Militec’s support to the Battalion during Operation Iraqi Freedom I, 2003-2004. At that time Militec, at the request of the reunion association, provided a free donation of 1000 units of their special dry formula gun oil to the Battalion.

        Members of the 720th carried their Militec bottles into battle in the Iraqi, Sunni Triangle and suffered no weapons failures.

Gun oil maker awarded for service to Battalion Jay Friess, Staff Writer, Maryland Independent, Charles County MD.


30 November - Fort Hood, TX The Battalion cased their colors and prepared for Operation Iraqi Freedom III and their deployment to Southwest Asia during a ceremony held on the new Gauntlet Field at Fort Hood, Texas.


Deployment begins for Operation Iraq Freedom-III

3 December - Kuwait The Battalion HQ Detachment (Vanguard) accompanied by the 1st Platoon (1st, 2nd, 3rd squads) of the 401st MP Company, arrived in Kuwait after a long flight that carried them through Canada, Ireland and Hungary via Fort Hood, Texas.

   While in Kuwait the units received refresher training in: Improvised Explosive Device (IED) recognition and reaction training; weapons test firing, convoy live fire training; urban warfare training on a M1114 HMMWV in the motor pool. In addition to the training all vehicles received armor upgrades where needed and additional unit equipment was provided for.

15-16 December - Baghdad, Iraq The bulk of the Battalion (minus the 410th who were already in theatre) flew into the Baghdad International Airport. The main body of HQ Detachment (Vanguard), Battalion staff, and the security platoon, 1st Platoon, 401st MP Company, flew from Kuwait into Baghdad International Airport.

  The 1st Platoon of the 401st was assigned to Battalion Headquarters as the Personal Security Detachment (PSD) Platoon.

   The 1st Squad was assigned as security to CSM William A. Generali. The 2nd Squad was assigned as security to the Battalion Commander, LTC Robert M. Taradash. The 3rd Squad was detached and sent to FOB Victory where they provided security for various general staff officers.

17 December The remainder of the group arrived at Camp Cuervo, Iraq from Kuwait via ground convoy without incident.

        The 401st MP Company (Always First), 411th MP Company (Speed & Power), 64th MP Company (Guardians), and 860th MP Company (Desert Reapers)Army National Guard, Phoenix, Arizona, via Fort Polk, Louisiana, are expected to arrive in theater in April.

        The troops immediately began transitional training (right seat / left seat rides) by shadowing their predecessors in order to gain knowledge of on the daily operations they would be performing.

        The quarters at Forward Operation Base (FOB) Cuervo consist of 2-3 man rooms with heating and air conditioning, shower trailers are located close by, and the Post Exchange (PX), and dining facility, telephone center, internet cafe are all located within walking distance of the Battalion area.

1st Squad
2nd Squad
3rd Squad

17 December - Iraq The remainder of the group arrived at Camp Cuervo, Iraq from Kuwait via ground convoy without incident.

   The 401st MP Company (Always First), 411th MP Company (Speed & Power), 64th MP Company (Guardians), and 860th MP Company (Desert Reapers)Army National Guard, Phoenix, Arizona, via Fort Polk, Louisiana, are expected to arrive in theater in April.

   The troops immediately began transitional training (right seat / left seat rides) by shadowing their predecessors in order to gain knowledge of on the daily operations they would be performing.

   The quarters at Forward Operation Base (FOB) Cuervo consist of 2-3 man rooms with heating and air conditioning, shower trailers are located close by, and the Post Exchange (PX), and dining facility, telephone center, internet cafe are all located within walking distance of the Battalion area.

   The weather is cool, daytime temperatures continue to drop into the 50’s with the nights much cooler.

25 December, Christmas - Iraq For the second year in a row elements of the Battalion once again missed celebrating Christmas and New Years with the family and loved ones. However, Santa did not miss spending the holidays with the troops. Santa (SGT Jesus Salazar, 1st Platoon, 401st MP Company), helped spread the cheer and gifts to the troops at a holiday party.

29 December - Baghdad, Iraq The Battalion HQ Detachment unfurled its colors at Camp Cuervo (Baghdad) Iraq during a formal Transfer of Authority ceremony. The Battalion replaced the 759th MP Battalion (Lone Sentinel), 7th Infantry Division, Fort Carson, Colorado, and would be supporting a battalion with approximately 1,200 soldiers.
   The Battalion assumed command of the following units already in theater: 630th MP Company (Mavericks) from Bamberg, Germany; 272nd MP Company (Fighting Deuce) from Mannheim, Germany; 984th MP Company (Red Dogs) from Fort Carson, Colorado; Alpha Battery, 1/151st Field Artillery Battalion, Marshall, Minnesota; Bravo Battery, 3/112th Field Artillery Battalion, Lawrenceville, New Jersey; Bravo Battery, (Gladiators) 1/258th Field Artillery Battalion, Jamaica Queens, New York and the 313th MP Detachment (Black Sheep) from Las Vegas, Nevada.

        The Battalion Area of Operations (AO), is East Baghdad, their mission will encompass: joint patrol of MP, Iraqi Police (IP), and Iraqi Police Liaison Officers (ILPO= former police officers in the US); operational support; communications support; logistical and administrative support; force protection; evaluation of operations for all Iraq Police Stations; training new police recruits at Baghdad Public Service Academy; highway and convoy escort security; and any other missions (MP=Multi Purpose) deemed necessary by higher authority.


Photographs Operation Iraqi Freedom
012804 SGT Rios, 64th reenlisted in Saddam's Hole by CPT Nava.
M00065 07??04 410th ASV on the job.
Photographs Fort Hood, Texas
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