Camp Liberty can hold about 14,000 troops.
Camp Liberty has a chapel, Moral Recreation and Welfare building, PX shoppette, barber shop, Internet cafe, gym and more.
Camp Liberty lies northeast of Baghdad International Airport.
The land near the camp is a former hunting reserve for Saddam Hussein.
1st Cavalry Division Headquarters is stationed at Camp Liberty. The Multi-national Corp in Iraq is headquartered at Camp Liberty. The Multi-national Corp coordinates the day to day operations of the military units in Iraq.
Camp Liberty is of the largest overseas posts built since the Vietnam War.
Camp Liberty has the largest PX, or post exchange, in Iraq. It will have a food court, barber shop and there will be a number of local vendors outside of it.
Camp Victory North
The largest of the new camps, Camp Victory North, since renamed Camp Liberty/Camp al-Tahreer, is twice the size of Camp Bondsteel in Kosovo — one of the largest US overseas posts built since the Vietnam War. Camp Victory North lies northeast of Baghdad International Airport, known to troops as BIAP. Victory North at its full capacity will hold around 14,000 troops. As of January 2004, about 16,000 soldiers from the Germany-based 1st Armored Division lived in a makeshift camp along the south side of BIAP.
The land behind nearby Camp Victory was a former hunting reserve for Saddam Hussein. The best view is from a man-made hill created from soil removed from a man-made lake nearby, tall reeds and palms line the roadside into the camp. Each day, seemingly endless convoys of civilian dump trucks drop off loads of gravel used to harden the wetlands.
By January 2004, several hundred mobile white-walled trailers, to be used as soldiers' living quarters, were laid out in rows, in a manner resembling a large trailer park. Each soldier would have 80 square feet of living space. Rooms inside the trailers were to be approximately 4m2 large, oufitted with a small window, equipped with two beds, a table and lamp, a closet, and be air-conditioned. Between the two rooms, within each trailer, soldiers would share a shower, sink and toilet. The Army and Air Force Exchange Service has built two structures, each larger than a circus tent. Kellogg Brown & Root workers also have a slice of the camp. They will continue to provide soldiers with food, morale programs and base maintenance.
About 100 Missouri National Guard troops from the 203rd Engineer Battalion built the first of seven headquarters buildings. But they were making slow progress on the long wooden structures, known to troops as SEAhuts. Some problems later persisted: doors ordered for the project didn't fit frames, insulation was cut to the wrong size, and some concrete blocks crumbled. The lumber used for the construction came mostly from Germany and Canada while the electrical supplies came from all over. Most of the time, metric measurements had to be converted to standard.
Compared to other Army installations in the Baghdad area, Camp Victory North was relatively new, and was still under development as of March 2004. At that time, soldiers there wishing to take advantage of services such as a larger PX or full postal service meant having to hop on the shuttle to Camp Victory South. As construction continued, soldiers in Victory North found less need to bus it to a different location, and some troops from other installations found it advantageous to shuttle to Victory North.
The Army has a lot of troops to accommodate; this means the largest PX in Iraq. It will have a food court, barber shop and there will be a number of local vendors outside of it. The new PX opened on April 15, 2004, and there was later a report of a Burger King. Though some may agree that the current dining facilities on Victory North are sufficient, new ones are under construction. The new chow hall at the Camp Blackjack section of Victory North dwarfs the old by all dimensions, and was operational on 29 March 2004.
In addition to the new PX and chow halls, Victory North has a number of other facilities. The three sections of Victory North, Camp Blackjack, West Life Support Area (LSA), and Division LSA, all have their own mayor cell.
By May 2004, each had a new chapel, Moral Recreation and Welfare building, PX shoppette, barber shop, internet café, gym and more. Most of these facilities initially existed in some form, but the new facilities were more permanent and much larger. Also under construction were basketball courts and volleyball arenas in each section of Victory North. Many of these projects were proposed by units who stayed on the installation.
As of June 2004, Gulf Catering Co. was reported to be the contractor in charge of catering the thrice-daily meals to soldiers stationed at Camp Victory North, inside a massive air-conditioned and new dining facility equipped with two wide-screen televisions.
In mid-September 2004, as part of an Army-wide effort to give its facilities around Baghdad friendlier connotations, and try to resolve the issue of constantly-changing facility names, Camp Victory North was renamed Camp Liberty, with its Arabic translation "Camp Al-Tahreer."
Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass) greeted soldiers hailing from his state at Camp Al Tahreer in Baghdad, Iraq on January 5, 2005. During the visit, Kerry discussed sports, the presidential election, and the state of the war in Iraq. Kerry met with soldiers from his state, asking them what he should tell Congress about the war in Iraq. The troops told him that the good work that they are doing was not getting reported in the United States.
On Jan. 12, 2005, the Army and Air Force Exchange Service opened a new bazaar at Camp Liberty to "provide more shopping for soldiers, but also to help Iraq take another step forward in the rebuilding of the country," said Dan Tompkins, AAFES Iraq vice president. "This bazaar represents a historic moment; this facility was planned, coordinated, financed and built by the Iraqi vendors," said Tompkins. "These entrepreneurs represent the future of Iraq - men who will not yield to the terrorists and will bring Iraq into the brotherhood of democracies."
It was reported in Feb. 2005 that Camp Liberty was now able to offer its soldiers something rather different from the regular mess hall - Pizza Hut, Burger King, Subway, Popeye's, and Taco Bell. This is in addition to the PX that sells anything from candy bars to televisions.
A portion of Camp Liberty reportedly serves as a tent compound used to house detainees scheduled to be freed. That facility at Camp Liberty, along with Camp Redemption at the Abu Ghraib Prison, sprung up as a result of the need to streamline the processing of Iraqi prisoners. It is meant to address overcrowding issues highlighted by the Abu Ghraib Prison abuse scandal, as well as formalize the interrogation process.
The facility opened on Sept. 14, 2004, is surrounded by a barbed-wire fence, and consists of air-conditioned tents in which prisoners are housed.
[Source: Global Security]