Iraqi police are increasingly conducting raids on buildings used by criminal gangs or resistance groups. But expanding the police force, without bringing back the corrupt and poorly trained force that served Saddam, takes time. It will take at least two more years.
But the increasing number of Iraqi police on the street is improving the intelligence situation. Information is the most powerful weapon in the battle with Saddam diehards and Islamic radicals. Iraqi police are better able to connect with Iraqi informers. Rewards and electronic information collection systems only take you so far. You have to plug into the personal networks at the street level, and this is increasingly the case. The number of senior Saddam officials getting arrested continues to grow, and the number of lower level thugs are also being caught.