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GWOT hot wash, straight from the wire

Welcome to The Sandbox, a forum for service members who have served or are currently serving in Iraq and Afghanistan, returned vets, spouses and caregivers. The Sandbox's focus is not on policy and partisanship (go to our Blowback page for that), but on the unclassified details of deployment -- the everyday, the extraordinary, the wonderful, the messed-up, the absurd. All correspondence is read, and as much as possible is posted, lightly edited. If you know someone who is deployed who might have something to say, please tell them about us. To submit a post click here.

THE IRAQI ARMY |

October 27, 2006

THE IRAQI ARMY
Name: Sacrificial Lamb
Posting date: 10/27/06
Stationed in: Iraq
Hometown: Anytown, USA
Email:
sacrificallamb@hotmail.com 

I serve as an advisor to the Iraqi Army. These people don't take the war seriously. It is all about what the U.S. can give them. The average soldier in their Army gets 13 days of leave a month -- that is, if they come back on time, which they don't. When they are here they only work half-days. All of this is approved by the Iraqi chain of command. That is what policy is based on; people who work maybe nine full days a month. No one is addressing that.

Comments

35 years ago it was called Vietmization. Train them to do things for themselves. That failed. This mess will fail also. Maybe after our elections things will change.

I agree, it's Viet Nam all over; but I voted early and I'm encouraging everyone to vote as well.

The tide is turning. People are waking up.

Ditto history repeating itself. I guess this is what happens when you have an idiot in th White House.

perhaps they're resting up for the days when no Americans stand between them and their enemies, when American lives will cease being wasted for an Administration whose bluster and overreach have killed more good Americans than died on 9/11. good luck. Come home to peace and with honor.

Dear Lamb,
Remember when the current administration determined we needed to invade Iraq because they had WMDs. And it was better to get them now then wait till there is a mushroom cloud over our country. This was when the UN inspectors said the Iraq's didn't have any WMDs and they couldn't find any.
I sat here and chalked the drumbeat to the invasion as Bullshit.
I thought that congress would never allow us to invade a country on "IFs and MAYBEs".
The Viet Nam vets will never let this happen.
Well I got one out of three right, "BULLSHIT".
If the people of a country wanted a new government they would revolt and form a new government. Isn't that what we did in 1776? The king treated the colonists horribly. They were hung, shot imprisoned, forced off their land and were taxed into poverty by the king. Then they had enough.
Because we were out gunned and out manned we hid behind trees and rocks and shot at the British soldiers as they marched in battle formations. The British call us cowards they couldn't tell the soldiers from the civilians. They said we should be in the open, in a formation and trading volleys of rounds and cannon fire. Our citizens did not run to the British identifying our Minutemen. I wonder if King George referred to this as a small group of insurgents? OUR ANCESTORS WANTED CHANGE.
You are experiencing Viet Nam all over again.
I went through the same realization when I volunteered to serve in the early 70s. It was more about “Big business” making a buck.
The result is going to be the same as Nam. When we are gone the people of Iraq will do what ever they want to do. They will form the government they want whether we like it or not.
I have been down you road. I support you and your buds 100%.
I do not support the current administration and 90% of the congress because of the invasion of Iraq. We had the world behind us when we went in to Afghanistan after bin Laden.
The shame of it all is, when this is over this administration and congress will walk away. This leaves you guys and us to deal with it. Sadly our grandchildren or great-great grand children will get to pay for it.
Vote for change this election.
Until then keep alert and safe. I pray to God that he keeps you and your buds out of harm's way.
Bob-E-K

I heard a couple of reporters being interviewed at once; one had been there off and on since the beginning of the war. This is what I understood them to say: there are two wars being fought, one by the U.S. miltary to maintain stability, and one by the Iraq government to stay in power. Venal, utterly corrupt, and everyone for themselves was the description of the government. They both said it looked worse every time they returned. The reporter who had been there the longest said she knew now that she was waiting for the moment when it was time to leave instantly.

First and foremost, why should they care about OUR (US) war? Would you give a shit if someone invaded America, called all the shots, had all the money and power, and you didn't even know clearly why they came in the first place?

Second, they ARE a completely DIFFERENT culture. They are not American, not European, they don't have our frame of references and they don't think like we do. HOWEVER, they do have their own culture, they have their own frame of references, and they think logically once you understand what they are reacting to in their own context.

It sounds like you were told to go to Iraq and accomplish this and this as your mission. As in a high school hallway monitor, I doubt you were told to monitor Iraqi soldier service time and motivation. So what are you really supposed to be doing? Keep your mind on that, and you won't be frustrated by their apparent lackadaisical attitude.

Just to let you know, in the Middle Eastern countries this is pretty much standard operating procedure for the military.

I feel for you, but you have to learn to concentrate on what you can change and let go of the rest.

Iraq is a waste all around the board. So is Afghanistan. If the gov't lied about Iraq, you know they lied about Afghanistan. Frankly, it would not surprise me if this gov't was in cahoots w/ Bin Ladin. That Carlyle Connection makes me rub my chin. Nobody learned from Vietnam, which was also a big waste. Kids dying for nothing but corporate greed. But still the populace and the kids are duped into thinking it's "for the country". SAD!

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