Iraqi frontline update

For those of you who don't know about these Iraqi updates, I have a friend whose brother is serving in the US army in Iraq. He sends these reports back from the frontline about what it's like to be out there. As I have stated before I object totally to the invasion of Iraq but do not print these articles to prove a point either way. I add these articles to my blog so that people can get an real life view of what life in Iraq is like for a soldier, without the media editing and bias that inevitably comes with all reporting. Needless to say this article inidicates what an impossible position all the troops out in Iraq face.

Read on.....

"....Sometimes it is tough to figure out what to say every week here. The problem is that sometimes nothing happens here then other times I do not even have time to sit down at my desk. This week has been a mix of that. For any of you at home you already know another soldier was killed this week. He was responding to secure the helicopter crash site (in the news) early in the week when his vehicle hit an IED. He was killed instantly and the other soldiers in his crew were hardly even shaken up. Mentally that has been tough for them, he was their leader.

Most Iraqi people do not want the insurgency around, but those same people do not want us around. Iraqis rarely get blown up by IEDs. They know where the bombs are and the trigger men do not target Iraqis. Many in the US think IEDs are like mines, we roll over them and they blow up. Most of them are triggered by someone using a phone, a garage door opener, doorbells, or hand held radios (motorolas).

Local Iraqis, including the Sheiks who get contracts to build things (paid in US dollars), know where the bombs are but do not tell us that info. They say they will be killed if they talk but really they just don't care if we get blown up. One sign on patrol that tells us we are about to be attacked is that the streets will empty and shops will be closed. The people know we are being targeted but don't feel they need to tell us by who or what. Soldiers are then supposed to remain professional when they ask the shopkeeper about the attack. He says "no ali baba, no muj, I know nothing" but he closed his store, he knew something.

If the Iraqi people do not care about the soldiers why should the soldiers care? That is where this war is heading for the US and I do not want to see US soldiers end up there. The leaders try to keep things professional and so far they are succeeding in our unit. Soldiers who break the rules are quickly punished or in some cases arrested but soldiers become bitter when their friend is dead and the shopkeeper whose shop is right next to the crater says he knows nothing.

The politics at home bother me, the media and their version of truth bothers me, but what bothers me most is watching men lose some of their humanity for a cause that even George Bush does not truly want to commit to...."

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