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Scotland on Sunday

Mackay never intended to wind up trying to rebuild the Iraqi police force. He arrived in Baghdad in February, thinking he might stay a couple of months before moving back to Edinburgh. Somehow, along the way, he ended up with one of the most difficult jobs imaginable. The police force was in a mess when he arrived. Some officers preferred to sit around their stations eating food, drinking tea and fizzy drinks, and chatting. No-one had the faintest idea how many of them there were, or what they did. Many didn’t do very much at all.

Without an effective police force, coalition commanders began to realise, there was no hope of restoring law and order. They decided to set up a special unit to train a new Iraqi police service capable of taking on the job. And they turned to Mackay to run it................

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