Editor’s note: This podcast episode was created in partnership with the One CA podcast and the Civil Affairs Association.
In this episode of MWI’s Urban Warfare Project Podcast, John Spencer is joined by retired Colonel Leonard DeFrancisci. He served thirty-two years in the Marine Corps and in 2004 he was a civil affairs detachment commander for Regimental Combat Team 1 during the Second Battle of Fallujah, Iraq.
In the conversation, Col. DeFrancisci describes the missions civil affairs units are charged with along the full spectrum of military operations and the training personnel undergo to prepare them to fulfill those missions. He also talks specifically about the role of civil affairs in the lead-up to the Second Battle of Fallujah and the activities undertaken by civil affairs forces during the battle. The story he tells highlights the special capabilities civil affairs soldiers and Marines can bring to even a high-intensity urban battle.
You can listen to the discussion below or find the episode on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Spotify, TuneIn, or your favorite podcast app. Be sure to subscribe, and if you’re enjoying the Urban Warfare Project Podcast, please take a minute and leave the podcast a review or give it a rating!
Special thanks to Cadet Ben Phocas for post-production editing.
Image credit: Cpl. Mark Sixbey, US Marine Corps
Fascinating episode. Hats off to Col. DeFrancisci. Sounds like his CA group did some fantastic work during and after the battle . What strikes me is that he still had to sell CA throughout the phases of conflict. As a former CA officer, this was my constant struggle.
I might have read 5000 pages on Operation Phantom Fury and I cant remember one page which was focused on CA. The fact that the city was almost completely empty of civilians (almost is an important distinction), lead me and, I assume, others to feel that CA was not part of the effort. Thanks for this!