Yesterday’s post was very short due to me watching College Football ALL DAY LONG!! Since today is Sunday and I really don’t care much for the NFL (except that I Love the Miami Dolphins, shout out to my brother Hendu) I feel that I can stay focused today and produce a post of good quality. Yesterday I had College Football on the brain and what I have noticed that when I Blog about College Football nobody really cares. So today, I will share with you my first real experience at war. First off, I would like to let you know that I have 5 Combat deployments; 3 to Afghanistan and 2 to Iraq. The experience I will share with you is my view of the initial push into Iraq in 2003.
I was assigned to 51st Chemical Company, at the time 51st was stationed at Fort Polk, Louisiana, as I mentioned in a previous post is the anus of the United States Army. My company was on a continuos 6 month rotation to Camp Doha, Kuwait. My Platoon was scheduled to leave in November 2002 to replace the platoon that was already there. We deployed, conducted a right-seat, left-seat ride (a changeover of equipment and a lay of the land). Everyday we conducted P.T. and conducted everyday as if we were at Fort Polk. Maintenance on our vehicles, M93 Fox Reconnaissance Vehicle was very important, because we never knew if and when “shit was to hit the fan”.
It is now February and there are talks about the U.S. going to war. At this point it was only rumors because of watching the news and people speculating what was going to happen. March 14, 2003 my Platoon Sergeant and Platoon Leader, pulled the whole platoon together in our assigned area. We had to make sure all doors were closed and locked because they were giving us important information about what was about to go down. This information is Secret, so I will not disclose this information in this forum. I know some of you maybe saying, the war is already done, so just release the information. I will not do that because I signed a statement of confidentiality saying that I wouldn’t say anything.
- We receive our orders and start preparing our vehicles with our war stock ammunition and ensuring that all our seals of the vehicle were good and all our weapon systems were ready to go.
- March 17, 2003, President George Bush issues Sadaam Hussein a 48 hour window to comply or there would be military action.
- March 18, 2003, each squad in our Platoon was assigned to different Task Forces to conduct Chemical and Biological Operations. My Squad was assigned to 1st MEF and we moved out to the desert to link up with the Task Force Commander to see exactly how we were going to be used.
- March 19, 2003, we are conducting our last preparations for war and all of a sudden we see this SCUD missile fly over, it had to have been flying about 4,000 feet in the air. I’m not really sure. Of course the Air Defense Battery at Camp Doha Shot it down. As this is going on we jump into our vehicles and turn on the overpressure systems and wait it out.
- Later that day we were ordered to move to the Kuwaiti/Iraqi border. Once we link up with the Task Force Commander he said that our vehicles would be the 3rd and 4th vehicles in the convoy.
To say that my stomach was in my throat is an understatement. The time had come for us to start our movement, man was I nervous. I have the lives of 3 people in my hands as we start our movement toward the Iraqi border. I was very scared. Of course we were coming up behind the “Thunder Run” that 1st and 3rd Infantry Division had just conducted. So we were catching the last pockets of fighters or guys that were trying to surrender. It was a sight to see, blown up vehicles on the side of the road, tanks all blown to shit, theirs of course. For the first time in my life to see a dead body hanging out of a blown up jeep looking vehicle with the side of his head gone will leave an impression on you.
A lot of Civilians don’t understand what military personnel go through when faced with challenges such as these. They always say that we could have done things different, but how can you say that things should be done a certain way and you have no clue what is actually happening. I don’t want to ramble, but its crazy how some Americans, WESTBORO BAPTIST CHURCH, can say things like soldiers deserve to die and all types of crazy shit. It is really disheartening. We are willing to pay the ultimate sacrifice for your fucking freedom. But that’s not the point of today’s post. I just wanted to share with you a REGULARS, view on my experience at war.