Monday, February 5, 2007

My trip to Kuwait

Today I am again reminded of the fact that we are at war. Here in Kuwait, things are not as edgy as up north in Iraq where I am going in a few short weeks. However, we are at war here as well.

After spending a couple days with my little brother at the Naval Base, we headed back to our training base a couple hours north. While enroute, we pulled over to relieve our bladders, stretch our legs, enjoy the scenery (that's the joke) and take some pictures with friends. We do this not thinking of our actions as hostile or suspicious, yet quickly learn otherwise. As we meander about talking and joking, a Quick Reaction Force (QRF) is alerted and dispatched to our location.

As we start walking back to the vehicle to leave, we quickly notice the fast approaching HUMVEEs with gunners perched, watching our every move. The crew-serve weapons (really big guns mounted to the top of the vehicle) pointing in our direction was unnerving. We were well within the "Kill Zone" before we even knew they were coming. We waited and watched as they cautiously approached. I admired their professionalism. Circling the van in a leap frog pattern, providing safety for each other at all times, they advanced.

As the cloud of dust settled, the Convoy Commander dismounted and addressed us. You see, in this part of the world it can take a mere sixty seconds or less to stage an explosive device on the side of the road which they use to kill American and coalition forces. We were checked and advised (ordered) to continue our mission (Charlie Mike)… we did so.