Ohh, I see, so it WAS Professor Plum, in the Library, with the candlestick. Who knew? The Conspiracy Theory is in effect here. They are all out to RULE THE WORLD!!! It’s interesting to see that people with some intelligence (and you really do seem to have at least moderate levels of brain activity)… how these people can focus on one point of view, no matter how far fetched, and diluted it seems, and determine that it is 100% true and there’s no other option. Your argument was great until you started to paint the picture of Club Med, for the life of the young people who are steadily becoming ‘casualties’ over there. Remember that you are counting merely 2000+ dead, but there are tens of thousands wounded. They didn’t get that, from the local Starbucks shack.
Is Halliburton an evil empire looking to get rich off this war? Yes. Is Dick Cheney, the criminal Master-Mind with his hand up President Bush’s butt like a sock puppet at a children’s birthday party? Yes. Are all the mouthpieces in DC as pathetically useless as cold-weather gear on the beach? You Better Belive It!
You see, these are all easy things to see. They are a given. But where you slipped up, and lost me, is when you painted the picture of the lazy men and women of our armed forces, ‘lounging by the pool’, ‘sipping on perier’, deciding if they wanna play golf, or go for a little jog about the beach, before ‘dining at Chez Arnold’s for supper.’ The truth of the matter is, I know people over there. I know people who’ve come back from over there. I’ve seen unedited video clips from friends of what life is like over there. And while they paint a similar picture to one another’s stories, none of them really seem to mirror your rendition of ‘life on the front lines.’ I will admit there are a few amenities of home (as if that’s a valid substitute), but don’t, for one minute, think that they are living “the good life.”
I don’t know where you’re getting most of your information from. I would hate to speculate, “Al Jazeera”, but I think you’re mistaken in your assessment of what it’s like for the men and women of our armed services, over there.
And in the end, that’s what this website, the book, and all of the contorversy that surrounds them, is all about. It’s not about The President and his “misguided, at best” reasons to go to war. It’s not about our Congressional mouthpieces’ inept ability to decide on the best way to stop it all. And it’s not about you vs me in some chest pumping, whose the better balker, prattle battle.
It’s about 200, 000 American men and women, over there (For whatever reason), in harm’s way, trying to survive, and do the best they can, in a really bad situation. They made a sacrifice that very few can say they ever would. That’s who we support. That’s why we support them. Don’t forget that as you burn your flag and protest the evil empire.
I enjoyed reading your book, you did a good job!
Thanks for your service to our country, a lot of people don’t understand the kind of sacrifices Soldiers and their families make. Thanks again and keep on writing!
AlthoughtI came from china,and my english was bad.but I read all your book.I konw very well about an American soldier’s life througut your book.Well,I say, you were a goog guy.You and your friends’experience will be remembered for me.
Now,you are out of army and have a comment life.
Althought I don’t like Bush’s govermen.But I think the people in America love peace,expesially the soldiers who left their parents and friends
I obviously like putting my two cents in as much as anyone (well, maybe not as much as ANYONE). Anyhoo, do any of you old guys have your own blog? This is all so interesting. Such creative sparring! (Maybe someone should start a blog on the blog, to be typed up by “various artists.”)
Hi. I am a UK Territorial Army soldier(equivalent to the USNG)and have just finished your book that a friend bought in the US on an exchange with the USNG. Superb.
I was in Iraq at the same time as you but down in Basra City. It is strange and yet oddly comforting, that I had very similar feelings about the war, my tour and life generally as yourself although our experiences were slightly different – maybe because we are the same age more or less and being reservists, who knows? There are several points that i would like to point out as being too similar.
1. The fact that on the whole, you enjoyed your tour. For myself, if i was offered the choice to repeat my tour with the same people doing exactly the same thing including getting blown up by IEDs, and getting mortaed etc I would jump at the chance. My family though, don’t get it.
2. When you finished your RnR, and you were back in Iraq that you felt like you were coming home. I have tried to explain this to my family since then, that I had EXACTLY the same feeling, so much that I felt I was missing out and letting the guys down by not being there.
3. “This is the most interesting and exciting thing I have ever done”. Ditto. I now know why our grandfather’s generation always talked about WW2…for the same reason. Nothing can beat that “high”.
I am proud of what I did in Iraq, helping in some small way to bring the country out of a dictatorship. I hop eyou are too – you should be. Please pass on my regards and best wishes to your unit.
ps every unit in every army has a d1ck like your company commander!!
I had no idea that anyone had written a story about our time in Iraq. Your book is very good and true. Some of the missions you wrote about i was there so tis means alot to me as well thankyou and goodluck!
SGT.CHRIS CHARBONEAU BRAVO CO.2/108 INF
Great job on the book! I’m only on p116 and am glued to its pages. Out of the four personal acounts I’ve read of Operation Iraqi Freedom, “My War”, “Heavy Metal”, “Shooter” and “Just another soldier”, yours is by far the best in a ton of respects.
I was one of those who started to read your blog before you left for Iraq.
At a certain point I quit reading not only milblogs but Iraqi blogs. I was spending an inordinate amount of time in fear for those who I came to care about, as if my bearing witness was going to help keep them alive. My heart goes out to all families involved who have no choice but to hold fast.
I got brave today and looked for you…..and found you made it back and have a book! Am I out of it or what! Honestly, belated though it is, knowing this has made my day.
Jason, enjoyed your book. I was in Basrah with UK 20 Bde for the first part of your tour. Reading it made me feel a little “homesick” for the boring buff colour and the smell of the city!! Are you still serving, curious to know if you re engaged or left? Thanks for the book, nice to be reminded of the good times and the sad.
I am Sarah Pfeffer, a senior design student at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design. Currently I am working on a book project and am interested in the views on war of soldiers. If you could email me I can email you my set of questions. I would really appreciate it.
Sarah Pfeffer firstname.lastname@example.org
(if anyone else is interested in contributing please send me an email)
People are always stereotypical about soldiers, you can never really get the full story about a war so it’s cool that instead of writing about political views of Operation Iraqi Freedom you just wrote abiyt what happened to you and not what happened to others. Loved the book man.
From Australia with Love
I agree about the book, it was outstanding and I did feel like I was right there over in Iraq and when I stopped reading I had to tell myself that I was never there and that i was reading a book…..it was so descriptive I could picture it all too well, thanks for the adventure that I may also actually be at.
First and foremost I want to say thank you so much for serving this country that half the time does not realize or appriciate the things that you guys do for us! Second I want to let you know that my husband was over there in 4th ID as a gunner the same time you were OIF 1 april 2003-2004, and the things that I have heard and seen from him are, i am sure only 1/4 of the truth of it. I saw a lot of women on your comments asking if you are single and such, which is really disgusting in the fact that they are not appreciating, nor could they appreciate what you are really saying in this. Again, Thank you for your time and your sacrifices I know they were a lot, my husband slept in the open rain or shine and stirred vats of Poo, so again I can not thank you again for protecting the Freedom of AMERICA.
Loved the book. Hilarious! Just one question though (if anyone could help me out). In the section “The Tao of Soldiering” Hartley uses the term “the middle path” to describe what else but the tao of soldiering. Does anyone know what he meant by that?
Great Book. Was your Plt Sgt, 1Sgt, CSM that weak? Where was your NCO support chain, where was the IG, and the JAG rep?
Young man you have a way with words. Give us another book. I was with the Big Red One in Vietnam. I’m a retired Div CSM (40 yrs), Silver Star holder. So I know a little about the military and especially the officer side of the house. If I had been your 1Sg I would have told your commander to go fuck himself A good 1Sg runs the company. Buck SGT/E5 is the best rank in the military, as the old saying, “shit runs down hill” and Sgt catches all the shits.
Job well done son and I salute you. How is your PTSD?
All of you tree hugger, liberals, and pot smoking, drug using hippie’s get your asses out of my country. How many countries would put up with your sorry asses..none…so grow up and do something positive for this wonderful country will live in.
Great site and thanks very much for your service. I also served in Iraq during 2005 in the British Forces as a Sgt in the Logistic Corps and hated every minute I was there. I also passed 3 months working with the USAF in Al Udied, Qatar… which was more enjoyable than Iraq but we worked really hard there as we were with a Squadron of RAF Tornados who were constantly on bombing missions over Iraq and Afghanistan.
Anyway, if you are ever feeling like getting away from things for a while and fancy joining me for a beer in Cancun, Mexico where I now live, please do drop me a line.