Saturday, June 30, 2007

Iraq - The Ultimate Suckfest

Alright well the last patrol that I just got off of was a very, very, very long and crappy time. It seemed as if the time would never pass and we would never make it back into base. But eventually time did pass and we finally made it back home. Just seemed like an eternity out there this time.

To start out, we ended up doing the usual market babysitting that apparently, the 82nd Airborne, a prestigious unit full of strong battle heritage, has been tasked with a job that the Iraqi Army and Iraqi Police should be doing. But anyways. We dismounted through one of the markets to look around and make sure everything was all well. We got a couple new guys in not too long ago, and I had one of them on my team. This meant an extra eye on that guy to make sure he was doing what he was supposed to. Not to mention that he's not used to how everything is and what to do, so I also would have to give him pointers and tell him what to do. Its a learning process and I understand that. Nothing really exciting in the market, although there was a guy trying to get me to buy some "freaky sex tapes". This is nothing new. Theres always a good assortment of guys selling copied porn DVDs.

Once we loaded up, we headed over to another market. As we were leaving there, we heard a loud explosion, and then the call came up over the radio that some mortars had been fired at the market. We rolled back over there to check it out. I guess only 1 or 2 had actually exploded and there were a couple unexploded ones. Almost immediately after pulling up to this IA checkpoint, one of the snipers from that one bad area started shooting. They constantly shoot at the IA, as well as the civilians just trying to shop in the markets. Its not very often that they do this when we are there, but this guy was ballsy enough to take a couple shots with us there. None of them were directed at us, but they were definatly shooting in our direction. We couldn't see anything, or where he was, so we could do anything.

This really got me thinking about the whole "Market Security" job that we have been tasked with. It seems that we are there to help secure the markets, but I dont really think we are securing much. In fact we are pretty much in a reactive posture. Something happens, we try to take care of it or help out. Not very proactive, which I think is what needs to happen. There needs to be more of an effort to go after those responsible, not just trying to stop them in the act, or reacting to an attack. In the few months that we've been doing this, there have been, by my count, at least 5 car bombs, 2 of which were quite devistating. There have been several mortar attacks and IED attacks on the markets, not to mention the almost daily sniper attacks at a couple of the markets. So I have to ask myself, what are we really doing? I know some people would say that there are fewer attacks because of our presence. Maybe so, but if so, I dont really think its much of a difference. I just really hope people who need to know this see this or recognize this and we start going after those responsible, BEFORE they do something.

Well due to the time it took us in the market with the mortars and sniper, we ended up missing breakfast. Fantastic. We ended up going somewhere and chilling out for a little bit. Although it was still early, it was already starting to get pretty hot out. All I could think about was getting to lunch. I was absolutely starving at this point. We ended up having to go pick up our commander, so we were happy because that meant that we would get to eat chow back on base. Well by the time we got there, it was almost closing time for chow, and for some reason, the CO told us not to get chow. You have got to be kidding me!!! So no breakfast and no lunch. At this point I was throughly pissed off and didn't even bother to hide it anymore. It added fuel to the fire the longer and longer the CO took to link up with us. It took so long at one point, the decision was made to just send us in and get togo plates. Not quite like eating at the chow hall, but at least we'd get something to eat. I also snagged an icecream to help with the searing heat.

Nothing else much happened the rest of the day, but that night we were getting ready to possibly do a raid. I actually wasn't looking forward to doing this, because I was just pissed from before and just hot and tired and hungry. I didn't want to have to do the raid thing all late and have to deal with anyone that we took into custody for a good part of the night. In hindsight now, I wish we would of done the raid.

Word came down that we would be pulling security for engineers that were going to be installing some barriers at this one market where a massive car bomb went off a while back. They were to do their work durring the night, and its not quick work. Yup, go figure we ended up pulling security for them until like 5 in the morning. This was one hell of a long night and the best part was, we still had all of our normal crap to do that morning and throughout the day. This was going to be a rough day, lemme tell you. I figure that by the time we leave Iraq, it will be one giant labryninth of t-barriers, jersey barriers, and alaska barriers. Because that seems to be the solution to everything around here and they are EVERYWHERE!

Fortunatly, we didn't have much to do during the day, so we spent alot of time just chilling out and trying to catch decent little naps in the trucks. Its amazing how uncomfortable it is trying to sleep in a Humvee, yet how great it feels. I swear I could of layed on a bed of nails and slept like a baby. I ended up getting, I guess about 3 1/2 hours of sleep throughout the day. We did a few things here and there, but thank god we were able to just relax most of the day. Not to mention being tired as all hell, it was also crazy hot that day. Its only getting worse, but July is just about here and its almost to the hottest part of the year. Not too much worse.

Once we finally got back, we noticed that our package mail had arrived, and I was so excited. I had 2 big packages waiting for me. One was my Dell laptop that I had ordered and had been waiting on for almost a month now. YESS!!! The other was a bunch of books, magazines and about 5000 MP3s burned on to 5 DVDs from a reader of this blog. I was so excited, and I felt like a little kid on Christmas. Definatly took me from pissed of, bad couple days me, to happy me just like that. Since then I have been on my computer like a junkie on crack! Time for some time off and some good relaxation before we head out again....

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Haole Wahine said...

Never DULL, never DULL. You brighten my day! Doing what you do--and then pissin' & moaning--and then you're "skipping around a DELL." I'm glad & proud you're one of our guys. I've driven by 3 different DELL's campuses, today, and now I'm glad Michael's product could provide you with so much happiness. Don't ask me why they call DELL's business parks "campuses", but they do. Just more keeping Austin weird! Have fun with the DELL.

The flooding around here and north is really something. We'll pull together and dry out, while you guys take care of business over there.

David M said...

Trackbacked by The Thunder Run - Web Reconnaissance for 07/02/2007
A short recon of what’s out there that might draw your attention, updated throughout the check back often.

Anonymous said...

Good Job! Keep up the fight!

Anonymous said...

Another awsome blog to read!
since ive started reading a few weeks ago i look forward to reading yours!! Congratz on ur DELL! i have one laptop compaq.. looking to buy a dell in the near future! Welp, cant wait to read your next thoughtful blog!

Be Safe Eddie
&& there's nothing wrong with using ur laptop like a crackhead haha!! cause when i got mines and i had sims 2.. i played that game non-stop!!!!!