From the Soldier side: Have you ever done something that later on you asked yourself: "Was I a dumb ass for doing that?"
I've asked myself that many times. One time, when we were in Bosnia.... This is a true story of why I am sometimes a dumb ass.
I was part of SFOR 14, we had just arrived in Bosina and our team had only been dropped off at the remote camp that was to be our home a few days prior.
The team we were replacing had a few "customers" that they wanted us to meet before they left. It was the way we did things....one "mess kit repair" team didn't leave until the next was there to replace them...then the new team was introduced to the "customers."
This "customer" we were going to meet was a good distance away. The team leader who was leaving thought we should take at least one M-16A2 on this job. I had to carry it. Normally, we just went out with M-9 pistols....but they were worried for some reason. I did look a little odd wearing civilian clothes and packing a rifle. I guess for Bosnia, it wasn't that odd, but I didn't know much at that time.
We spent a few hours driving from Uglivik to the NATO camp at Sarajevo, Bosnia. This was an interesting camp because they had troops from most of the NATO countries there...and a PX for most of them to. We had to check out the each PX just to see what they were like. I thought it was funny that the French PX had wines from Napa, CA but none from France. The clerk said the California wines were better and cheaper than the French wines. I got a laugh out of that.
That was another funny thing, but the area of Bosnia we worked in normally didn't allow us to drink. However, just by driving a few hours, the camps in the same country didn't have this rule. I found out later, that most of our senior officers found reasons to chopper down to Sarajevo as often as they could for some meeting---just so they could drink. They were friggen useless to.
Since we had a job to do, I didn't drink anything, but my useless team leader did. He drank a bottle of wine, then came to the room and passed out.
I had to wake my team leader up for our 0100 hours (1 am) mission. He fell asleep in the van. I should have learned from that mission, that he was going to be totally useless on this deployment.
We drove out off the camp at 0110 hours. We drove for 20 minutes into the darkest place in the world.
to be cont.