My Humantarian mission in Iraq Story

My Humantarian mission in Iraq Story

This is a discussion on My Humantarian mission in Iraq Story within the Law Enforcement, Military & Homeland Security Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; The morning started off around 0500 to get the trucks ready for today's mission. This usually incorporates checking the fluid on the vehicles, making sure ...

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Thread: My Humantarian mission in Iraq Story

  1. #1
    Member Array thepittman's Avatar
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    My Humantarian mission in Iraq Story

    The morning started off around 0500 to get the trucks ready for today's mission. This usually incorporates checking the fluid on the vehicles, making sure the electric turret controls are working properly, and mounting M2 .50 cal machine gun in our trucks turret.

    Being that its a early February morning its around 35 degrees so the gunner makes sure he is well protected from the elements and I make sure the heat in the truck is on full blast. Once we throw our equipment(in my case an external antenna for retransmitting) in the back, we don our kevlars and body armor, and settle into the truck.

    Today our executive officer(XO) is going to be our truck commander. He is running behind as always so I go ahead and pull our truck to the convoy staging area on the Iraqi Army side of our patrol base. There i get out of the truck for a moment, long enough to smoke with my buddies until the XO gets there and we can begin our days work. My soldier was hungry so he left the turret and grabbed some muffins and juice to hold him over till we return.

    The XO arrives, we mount up in our vehicle's and head out the gate. The drive around us is always rather interesting. Sometimes to pass the time you count dead dogs on the side of the road. Most importantly though, you scan the sides of the road looking for possible roadside bombs and to keep the best distance you can from them.

    During this particular drive we pass the "Al Qa Qaa" weapons facility that was supposed to be a storage area for Iraq's WMD's. Its a large area of concrete weapons bunkers and military buildings that has long been abandon. Our battalions artillery batteries now use this off limits area as test fire range. Continuing our drive we pass many road side Iraqi Army check points and wave to the soldiers posted there. We know a good deal of them because most live on our patrol base with us.

    As we finally get around the Qa Qaa we get to a poor area we refer to as "the West Virginia of Iraq" or "Saddams chemical weapon test dummies." Many people in this run down farming area along the Tigris are so inbred that there are many mentally retarded children and adults living here.
    Many are standing along the roads just staring at us with worn faces of years of hard living. These are the people we are here to help today.

    As we move through the farming village we get to the end where an abandon school is sitting in haggard disrepair. We park our vehicles in such a way to provide 360 degree security around the school. We dismount our vehicles with the top gunners staying put to watch the out laying fields and water canals for trouble. We tactically clear the area and building assisted by our Iraqi comrades.

    Once things have been secured, we download our vehicles of the necessary equipment for today's work. My first priority is to immediately setup communications links back to our Bravo Battery command post. There are no good locations for our drop antenna, so in the process of clearing the area other soldiers had already taken control of a near-by structure. I got on top the building and placed the antenna which successfully fulfilled the needs to talk back to the CP.

    By the time i did that, other support soldiers that had accompanied us had set up a vaccination station and a place to hand out gifts to the children. The gifts consisted of t-shirts and soccer balls with Iraqi flags on them. Placing a good image of Americans in children's minds is important to help peace further down the road.

    Over 300 children passed through the stations and many remained in the area playing and laughing. They families of the children were all grateful because they had troubles providing this basic needs to their children. I highlight of the day was seeing to Iraqi midgets about 15 and 17 years old. The were some funny little guys. One tried to carry all the stuff we gave him up a steep hill and he fell down it backwards. His friends assisted him and he went on his way. The XO decided to get into things so he decided to ride one of the kids bikes around. It didn't have any brake and it looked like he was going to fall off which brought a laugh from me and my gunner.

    The day ended around 2 in the afternoon and we packed up and headed out. We took the same way that we came and passed all the people that had the solemn looks on their faces earlier. This time the were lit up with smiles and friendly waves. The children did the same and waved the little Iraqi flags that we gave them. This is one mission that made me feel really good about what we were doing and got to see the positive results in the peoples faces. Its one of the bright points during the deployment that I will remember for a long time to come.
    Last edited by thepittman; April 8th, 2008 at 07:40 PM.
    3/320th Field Artillery
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    101st AIRBORNE


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    VIP Member Array deadeye72's Avatar
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    That is a wonderful story. Too bad the news media does not cover operations like that, but I guess that would be against their agenda. Great job to all soldiers and thank you for serving.
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    Member Array uakaos's Avatar
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    nicely done
    "An unarmed man can only flee from evil, and evil is not overcome by fleeing from it."

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    Thanks for that wonderful story and for your service to our country. God bless!
    The old sheriff was attending an awards dinner when a lady commented on his wearing his sidearm. 'Sheriff, I see you have your pistol. Are you expecting trouble?' 'No Ma'am. If I were expecting trouble, I would have brought my rifle.'

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    Distinguished Member Array USPnTX's Avatar
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    Thanks for your service!! Keep up the good work and most of all stay safe!!
    "Do not fear those who disagree with you; fear those that do and are too cowardly to admit it" - Napoleon

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    Nice story, a must read.
    "Just blame Sixto"

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    Thanks for your service.
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    eww
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    Well done.

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    As a former military "lifer" I salute you for your sacrafice. Early in my military career I flew in and out of Tel Aviv during Operation Nickel Grass, resupplying the Israili military. Some of my most cherished memories and momentos are the children and the thank you letters from them. I wish the anti war people as well as the press could see what the "real" military does in countries where we are sent. Our mission was not to destroy everything in our path, but to bring stability and peace to a region. The fact that we were humans and not "animals" who only want to rape and kill under the guise of war is not something that sales papers or boosts ratings.
    Again I salute you my brother!

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