Idaho citizen soldiers continue to toil north of Baghdad since taking command of Camp Taji, Iraq, in December. The 116th Cavalry Brigade, headquartered in Boise, is comprised of approximately 1,500 soldiers from the Idaho Army National Guard, 600 soldiers from the Montana Army National Guard and 600 soldiers from the Oregon Army National Guard. The 116th left their homes in mid-September for pre-deployment training at Camp Shelby, Miss., and arrived in Iraq in mid-November.
The 116th Brigade Special Troops Battalion is responsible for life support, facility maintenance, land management, force protection and base defense for Camp Taji. The unit operates much like a municipal office, responsible for maintaining infrastructure and support services to U.S. service members and civilian contractors.