We should listen to what the soldiers in Iraq are saying
I caught this from Shakespeare’s Sister and felt it needed to be spread far and wide across the blogosphere.
From the sadly-and-ironically named blog, One Foot in the Grave, by Sgt. Thomas J. Strickland, 27, of Douglasville, GA. (With a few “u’s” changed to “*’s” by me to beat any filters.)
August 13, 2005
The insurgency is on the rise in our area, with a most impressive coordinated assault on one of my sister FOBs (St. Joe) under their belt. Apparently they have enough folks and sophistication in my back yard where they can simultaneously place accurate mortar rounds on three seperate locations (at least 30k apart) to tie up any ground mounted quick reaction forces, as well as offer up multiple RPG strikes on the guard towers at Joe. These RPG attacks really bring out the QRF who face their own ambush as they come out the gate, at least 12 insurgents occupying buildings with an overwatch position to Joe’s only entrance armed with more rpg’s and small arms. The only possible responses are tanks or Apaches. Luckily we have both on call. 12 dead insurgents, destroyed buildings, a compromised FOB, sustained, accurate and unaswered indirect fire and lots o unanswered questions later… I’m here.
What the f*ck has my chain of command been doing? We were winning somewhat when I left. And now we’re being pinned down in our own f*cking homes? Insurgents are pushing locals out of their homes and taking over my area at will? What kind of f*cktarded plan have we been half-assedly executing? Obviously the kind that neglects sound contact with locals. Obviously the kind that gives further distance to unbridged gaps between soldiers and locals. Obviously the kind that has shown enough weakness when confronted by the insugency that it has been encouraged to grow.
Back home (the USA kind) I have no home, no job, and my commander in chief is on vacation (he’s about 20 days behind Ronald Reagan right now in the race to become the most vacationing president ever. Hey W! we all got our fingers crossed! Here’s to you and two more years of presidency…er vacationing!). Luckily pretty much everything that is important to me can fit into the back of a truck. Luckily I just paid off one of those.
In their fear to build relationships and get out of their hiding holes the FOBbits above me have f*cked my friends and I.
We’ve just completed the first 1/4 of our tour. we’ve sent 4 of 24 members of this platoon home with injuries.
Thankfully we’re not like another who has sent 8 home in body bags…but we got 9 months to go.
Sgt. Strickland didn’t even make it 9 more days:
The Department of Defense announced today the death of three soldiers who were supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom. They died on August 15, 2005, in Al Mahmudiyah, Iraq, when their HMMWV accidentally rolled over into a canal. All three were assigned to the Army National Guard’s 1st Battalion, 108th Armor Regiment, Calhoun, Ga.
Sgt. Thomas J. Strickland, 27, of Douglasville, Ga.
Spc. Joshua P. Dingler, 19, of Hiram, Ga.
Sgt. Paul A. Saylor, 21, of Norcross, Ga.
What the f*ck has your chain of command been doing, indeed, Sgt. Strickland.