06 April 2009

How we got home....from Iraq

From the Soldier side: I just looked at one of my new/favorite blogs - http://www.castrapraetoria1.blogspot.com/ which is written by a Marine 1st Sergeant. For those of you who know what a First Sergeant is, good...for the rest of you, I'm not going to explain right now....but go look up "God" in the dictionary and that should explain them.
Top's (we call 1st Sergeant's "Top" with the utmost respect because they are the top sergeant. After First Sergeant comes Sergeant Major---Sergeant Majors serve no useful purpose that I know of in the US Army.)
But, back on track...his post reminded me of our travels to both Bosnia and Iraq. The problem with going with the National Guard is....most regular forces just assume we are retarded or something...and we usually have some leaders who do everything they can to prove them correct. But, I want to tell you about our trip home from Iraq. It should have been one of the best moments in our life, but there were those who's job was to make it torture.

If you've read my past post, you'll remember that when my Guard unit got to Kuwait, a bunch of us Bosnia Vets were given to a Regular Army Battalion. This had good and bad points. The good points were we didn't have to stay with some really dumb ass leaders, but got to go work for some semi dumb ass leaders.
At the end of the deployment, when it was time to fly away, we re-joined our home unit in Baghdad. There were some soldiers we had missed, but I made sure the command knew that we cared little for them. We were almost left out of everything just trying to leave Iraq!
We did all the hurry up and wait stuff, but the Air Force flyjockies really wanted to leave Iraq, so they didn't waste much time getting out of there. ...on one of them new fangaled C-17 jobs...nice and fast and better than the C-130 I had been on so many times before. It landed us in Kuwait and there they started "Operation We Don't Trust You."

To be Cont.


Anonymous said...

1. "We don't trust you" is one up on us leaving VN 40 years back.
2. Be interested to read about the high tech ways you were screwed.
3. My group was almost all hard-ass infantry with eleven months and 25 to 28 days in country.
4. The first thing we were told was, "Screw up out-processing and it will be weeks, maybe months before you get on the Freedom Bird."
5. From hard asses, my entire group become obedient children -being ruled by lard-ass remf PFC's.
6. Among other things, was reissued my dufflebag, got to put on moldy fatigues and leather boots. Had to do that because we turned in our ripstops and jungle boots.
7. Traveled back to Travis AFB in khakis that were three sizes too big (went from about 220 to 172#) Apart from a few ribbons and badges, the only thing I brought back that wasn't in the bag I arrived with was a carton of Marlboros.
8. On an earlier post, you were talking about being down range of AH's firing mortars and rockets.
9. Got in trouble over that recently.
10. The Israelis bombed and invaded Gaza after the Hamas people fired about 7000 rockets into southern Israel over about 3 years time.
11. A well meaning soul said that since Israeli casualties had been few, their action was unjustified.
12. Was in a bunker that was hit by a 122 rocket. Survived, obviously. After that, had little mercy for those we found outside the wire with mortar or rocket gear.
13. Tried to explain to folks the sour and fearful state of mind that being under fire puts you in.
I guess you had to be there.
14. Am not saying I agree with what the Israelis did. Just saying my experiences (happened again, elsewhere)give me some understanding of their motivation.
15. Got me labeled as a zionist
warmonger. Got me a good dose of "what will the neighbors think," from the wife.
V/R J West

Anonymous said...

There's always "fun-suckers" out there, aren't there? A guy's just trying to get home and ...wham. Here they come.

Kinda reminds me of Murphey.

...but you did say... "to be continued", Roller Dude.

Huh. I looked up "god" in the dictionary and saw a familiar name there. Whadaya know? And silly me, I thought those 1st Sgts were just humans.

Anonymous said...

To be continued??? D!!!!
It's like 3 days later...come on man what gives?!?! It's like you have to work or something...shhhheeesh...*grin* You know I love you as much as ice cream. I gues I'll go have some to placate myself til you finish this post!

America's 1st Sgt. said...

Ah CI Roller, you flatter me.

One of the things I think the Corps does right is that we consider all Marines as part of our tribe. Army types seem to be so wrapped up in unit pride to an extent that other Soldiers are treated like strangers. I could be wrong but that is my perception.

It all goes back to what I have said before. If we take care of troops they will take care of the mission. How hard is that?