Back to some politically based discussion....
Since I hit ground in Germany, I have noticed that I just can't bring myself to watch the news anymore or hear reports on activities in Iraq. I can't even bring myself to watch the videos I made. When asked to play them for people, I walk out of the room. I still feel naked without my machine gun at my side, still dream about being on convoys and being around Iraqis. My driving has surprisingly adjusted quickly. I was worried that I would find myself driving down the middle, swerving from roadside trash, but no. I know it will talk a while to 'normalize' - whatever that means in my case.
Previously, I had alluded to certain situations in the war that just seem to smell rotten to me. One in particular I just can't bring myself to resolve, I just don't see how this fits. Here it goes...
Standing at LSA Anaconda during a convoy mission, I started to look around at my surroundings. Knowing that Anaconda is bothered by a "mortar attack" daily; sometimes 1, sometimes up to 3 or 4, I began to wonder from where these insurgents were launching their attacks. Several questions popped into my head that I stil ldon't understand. First, if you had a cache of dozens or hundreds of mortars as they apparently do, why would you only launch a few at a time? That's not an attack, that's just being a pain in the ass. And second, it is a pain in the ass with no result because they rarely ever hit anything. Seemingly they launch from the same vector daily and hit the same relative nothing. So why launch so few at so little so frequently? Geurilla warfare is intended to wear down the enemy by attrition and erosion, understood. But this is just negligible. At worst when 3 mortars hit, an alarm goes off and we don our full battle rattle to walk around in. Wow.
So as I stood there looking around, I realized that I was maybe 50 meters from the perimeter. That perimeter consisted of a chain-link fence wrapped in razor wire, with a single guard post. On the other side of the fence was the paved road we travelled in on, then a field of watermelon or something. Probably a 1/4 mile from my location then, on the other side of the field, is a fig grove thick enough to hide in, deep enough to hide a mortar tube behind. So quickly calculating distance and cover, I realized how easy and effective it would be to launch mortars from the other side of the fig grove since exactly behind me was some of the most dense area of buildings and people on Anaconda. No way you couldn't hit it. Plenty of farmers milling around in those fields all day, all night. Too perfect. Then I remembered some things
It still bothers me that this situation is on my mind. The fighting in Iraq does not make sense. I don't mean us being there is illigitimate, I don't mean war is stupid. No, I mean that the type of, amount of, and locations of the conflicts just do not add up. What does that mean to me? Easy, a grand theatrical production for the purposes of money laundering and backdoor imperialism. The greatest shame is that so many of us have suffered or died for these activities. Paranoid? Maybe, but I can't explain what I've seen anymore.