Medicine Soldier

A View from Iraq


Quick Reaction

Now that we have our vehicles, the daily routine is starting to change. We spent a whole day tearing the vehicles apart and changing fluids and checking all the systems. The next day we wanted to go for a test drive and stretch our legs and put to practice some of our training and see what works and what we need to adjust. We still have many guys on camp security so when we sent the patrol out I was able to be the machine gunner. We went flying down the road at 50 miles an hour with me in the turret. I was feeling a little safer than I did when we came north now that we are in the armored HMMWVs.

We just ran down the street to another camp where some of our sister units are. It was a good ride and we were able to get some fresh air. Imagine living and sleeping in your office and not being able to leave your work property except with a carpool of your coworkers and boss.

Today we were working on load plans for a mission sometime this week. We wanted to pack our equipment in case we had a mission on short notice. My job was to change the security codes on the radios. While I was doing that, one of the watch officers from the control room came running over and said there was something going on outside the gate and I needed to send one of my platoons out to check things out. So I ran and grabbed some of the other leaders and had them gather guys coming off guard shift and woke some other guys up. Meanwhile I crawled back in and laid across the seat of the HMMWV to finish installing the radio codes. Next thing I hear is boots next to my head and feel a belt of ammo across my leg. The guys were prepping the vehicle while I worked. I had enough time to jump out of one vehicle and send them along to get more info while I loaded up with the rest of the guys. I grabbed my armor and took off for the control room. As things progressed, the guys got their game faces on and we understood there was a vehicle outside our camp with people carrying weapons. We were put on standby to back up the camp security. Then another report came around that some people were captured and were to be held at the camp. I called the control and recommended we stand down because one of the platoons was supposed to support the detention center and half of the guys were with me on standby. I sent the guys back to the tents while I ran back to the control center and debriefed the officer in charge.

I grabbed a quick sandwich and headed to another briefing. After that, some of us went to the detention center to check on our guys there and watched them work. It is almost bedtime now and I have just finished the coordination for the guard shifts between the camp security and the detention center. Tomorrow I am back where I started today, prepping for the mission this week to get the mail.

If you ever have a bad day at work, I recommend printing these pictures and hanging them on your door. Hopefully your day won't be so bad or at least as crazy as mine.

posted by Scott | 23:00 Baghdad time | © 2.26.2005
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