For me, mind thoughts. For you well, ThomCatSpikeish. Temporarily drafted by my brothers...
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Monday, July 28, 2003  
[KV’s E-mail]
Hi Everyone,
Below are links as well as the text from two articles forwarded to me, These articles discuss many of the missions Alpha Co. has performed (especially humanitarian) that have been mentioned in some of my previous emails. It may also give you a little peace of mind to know that much of the tragedy you hear in the media has been taking place in the "Sunni-Triangle". Alpha Company's missions are mainly based in non-Sunni Iraq. You may also find the information regarding the "numbers" interesting.

I know I've told you time and time again what a great job your Marine/Sailor is doing over in Iraq. But guess what...
I'm going to tell you again!
I spoke with Major Miner today. He gave me an update!

"Gen. Mattis (1st Mar Div) and Lt. Gen. Conway (1 MEF) visited Alpha Company and had nothing but praise for the work our Marines/Sailors have been doing. Gen. Mattis said that there are no guarantees of a return date for us, but they are shooting for September. Their visit and compliments were incredible morale boosters for the men. Right now, we are the biggest show in town and consequently, we're getting all the support we need from 1st Marine Division as far as requests for manpower and supplies. We are the focus of effort for the Division as we have the most active Area of Operation (AO). We are making great progress in suppressing insurgent activity in our AO. The past few days have been relatively quiet for us but we are gearing up to go out on another mission today. The news of the deaths of Saddam Hussein's sons has helped to improve the morale of Alpha Company as well. Considering the situation, the morale of the men is relatively high."

I was certain to ask Major Miner if it was okay for me to mention the possibility of a September return date, as I don't want to get anyone's hopes up falsely. He knew that many of the men of Alpha Co. would call home repeating the words of Gen. Mattis, so it may be best to give everyone the "heads up". Please remember, this does not mean we have a return date and does not mean that it will definitely be September. Everything and anything can change in the Marine Corps, even if it comes from a general. So, don't start making vacation plans just yet. But, do keep your fingers crossed and keep up the praying for a speedy return.
Please feel free to brag to everyone you know that your Marine/Sailor is a key player in the success of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Take Care,
4th LAR A Co. KVA

Articles of Interest
Unlike Baghdad, U.S. Troops Appear Safe in Southern Iraq {From KV}
Local Marine units staying busy in Iraq {From KV}
A Real American Hero

7/28/2003

Thursday, July 24, 2003  
LiL Bro’s Call, Wooden Booths Near The Babylon Ruins
{{{MoM took the call; her synopsis}}}
He says he’s just fine and as always in good spirits. He hopes to be coming home around mid-September **not confirmed; been discussed in previous posts**. He has not received mail for 2 months. I asked LiL Bro if he lost weight: said no because he has been eating hot meals each day. LiL Bro has not been w/ Major Miners group since he volunteered to go to Kuwait back in late June. He is presently back in Iraq stationed near the outskirts of Babylon in Al Asad where he can see The Babylon Ruins. Sleeps outside next to his LAV, which he will no longer drive until his return back to Camp Pendleton. The top gun(s) were removed and put on another LAV, so his LAV is down. Presently doing some guard duty and yes he is watching his back. This week he will meet up with Major Miner’s group and replace another driver, so he can have a rest. LiL Brother tells everyone I love you all and thank you for your prayers.

7/24/2003

Wednesday, July 23, 2003  
Troops Eager To Leave Iraq
[KV E-mail]
Hi Friends and Family of 4th LAR A Co Marines/Sailors,
Below is a link to an article forwarded to me. When I read it, it was way more comforting than the other media I've seen lately. Again, I must add that the dates mentioned are not necessarily relative to 4th LAR and everything can change based on operational needs. 4th LAR is not specifically mentioned, but they are part of the 1st Marine Division.
Hope everyone is hanging in there and that most of you have recently heard from your Marine/Sailor.
Take Care,
4th LAR A Co. KVA

[KV e-mail]
Hello Everyone,
I heard from Major Miner today. He told me that there is not much new to tell. Alpha Company is still performing security missions as they have been doing the last few weeks. Most commonly, the procedure for most platoons is a one or two day mission followed by one day of vehicle maintenance and an attempt to stay "clean" (that word is quite relative to the environment - they wash uniforms, take a shower, shave, etc.). Living conditions are improving for them. They just received a shipment of non-MRE (Meals Ready to Eat) food and a whole lot of Gatorade. (I think that might make a good commercial for that company! Hook me up with that ad agency!) Right now, the Marines/Sailors are on a rotation of making one free phone call from the company satellite phone. They also have regular access to a DSN phone, but often times the line is long and the Marine/Sailor may choose to sleep instead of stand in line. Occasionally they have access to "morale phone lines" which may be what was referred to in one of the articles I sent out. Everyone in the company is hanging in there. Major Miner mentioned that in the July 7th edition of Time magazine there is an article in which there is a picture with a few 4th LAR Marines (Capt. Taylor, 1st Sgt. Weitzel, Gy. Sgt. Bemis and Lt. Col. Divine are the ones he mentioned). I have not personally seen it, but you may wish to pick up a copy for your Marine/Sailor. He said that another large shipment of mail came in today and it was exciting to all. I'd like to remind everyone to use the new address as follows, even if there is a different return address on the mail that comes from your Marine/Sailor. Please use:
Rank, First Name Last Name, USMC (i.e., Sgt. John S. Brown, USMC)
Co. A, 4th LAR Bn
UIC 39860 BOX 1796
FPO AP 96426-1796
This has been our most efficient address to date.
Hope all is well with everyone.
Take Care,
4th LAR A Co. KVA

7/23/2003

Friday, July 18, 2003  
[KV's e-mail]
Hello Everyone,
Just wanted to pass on some things that were emailed to me that may be of interest to all of you. Giovanni Ponciano, who heads a chapter of the VFW (Veterans of Foreign Wars) and is a former Alpha Company Marine informed me that "the last time Alpha Company was activated... 12 years ago for Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm, we were gone for just over 6 months. Looking back at all the rumors of when we were supposed to come home... there were quite a few. It got to the point of simply not believing anything until we got onboard a plane to come home." (Thanks for the update, Gio!) It goes without saying that it is the norm, not the exception, to have continual rumors of return dates coming in. I'm certain we are all hoping it will be about the same time frame for Alpha Company to come home from this war as they did from the last one.
Below is a letter sent to me by a father of an Alpha Co. Marine, Scott Bergey (Thanks Scott!) that is a wonderful anecdote that just goes to show us how our Marines/Sailors are doing such a spectacular job, they are being noticed by "upper management"!
Take Care,
A Co. KVA

To Fellow Marines and Friends, July 15, 2003

This past week at the Marine Memorial Club in San Francisco, I was able to attend a panel discussion of 5 Iraq war embedded journalists. It was hosted by war correspondent Joe Galloway and attended by over 100 people including Major Gen. Mattis (1st Marine Div) and Major Gen. Amos (3rd Marine Airwing). Both these men are currently commanding forces in Iraq. After the presentation I had the opportunity to meet Major Gen. Mattis and his two aides. Of course the topic came up about my son, Bryan, being in Iraq with the 4th LAR and the General seemed really interested in how I was feeling about Bryan. He commented how great the guys were doing, especially the 4th LAR, and I beamed with pride for all our guys.

Next morning at breakfast who walks in but the two Generals in civilian clothes. We said hello and discussed more about our mutual friends in the airline industry, and then retired to our separate tables. Not 5 minutes later, my cell phone rang and it was Bryan on a SAT phone from the sands of Iraq!! "Bryan, guess who's 3 tables away from me having breakfast?" He couldn't believe it… "Dad, he's one of the #1 guys in Iraq!!" I asked if he'd wanted to talk to him and Bryan said "NO"….well….do you think he would?" So, I asked the General if he would like to talk to one of his marines in Iraq and General Mattis said "Sure" and took the phone with a warm "Hello, Lance Corporal.". They talked for a while as I watched on with Marine Pride. From the top of the Marine Memorial Skyroom to some dusty old sand dune in the middle of Iraq a General engages with one of his marines. How great is that?

Semper Fi kicked in full boar, so I decided to cash in on some of my "senior captain perks" with American Airlines. I arranged for Gen. Mattis and his aides to be given special attention on their trip back to the war zone and it was a great experience to help out in some small way in seeking justice, freedom and victory for 911.

Respectfully,
Captain G. Scott Bergey
American Airlines

7/18/2003

Tuesday, July 15, 2003  
Calls, wooden phone booths now
Wonder if they are like most phone booths now, no coin slots and no number for you to call back.

7/15/2003

Monday, July 14, 2003  
A Soldier's Bravery is Knowing
Prayers to his speedy recovery & his family's well being
[KV’s E-mail]
Hello All,
I want to make sure that we keep everyone informed of situations, as the arise & as soon as possible. Please pass to your KVN.
Sgt. Roberts, A Co. of Temecula, Ca. suffered a gun shot wound to his shoulder about 18 hours ago in Iraq. He went into surgery and is expected to recover fully from his wound. Just after his surgery, he was able to call his wife and both are in very good spirits.
I was able to visit Mrs. Roberts about an hour ago, she is an extraordinary lady, very upbeat and happy that her husband is going to be fine. More information will follow this week, but I wanted everyone to know that our Marines are doing an extraordinary job over there and Sgt Roberts has exemplified the uncommon courage and dedication of them all.
S/F,
LtCol. Michael P. Chené
PWST, 4th LAR Bn.
Camp Pendleton, Ca. 92055



[KV's e-mail]

Hi Everyone,
I spoke with Major Miner and he did not have any new information to pass on and he did not issue a command statement at this time. I usurped the conversation with news of our youngest baby's first real word, "Tuh-tahl" (translated: Turtle). I did get out of him how they are still running similar missions as previously stated. They keep very long hours and are very busy all the time these days. On a regular basis they capture "bad guys". He's aware of the things we hear on the news that make us so anxious and said that most of what we hear pertains to Army units. Yousifiyah is south of Baghdad, and they sometimes have missions in Baghdad, but most of there work is south of the capital. There's a good chance they will remain stationed where they are for the remainder of the deployment. They have not received mail in about a month but hope to soon since we started using the new address:

Rank, First Name Last Name, USMC (i.e. Sgt. John S. Brown, USMC)
Co. A, 4th LAR Bn
UIC XXXXX BOX 1796
FPO AP 96426-1796

I asked him again if he had any news of a return date and he replied that there are speculations of possibilities, but again, nothing has been confirmed. He reaffirmed that it is all contingent on their operations. My personal assessment is that we are much closer to the end than we are to the beginning, but no guarantees. Everyone seems to be hanging in there and all the Marines have access to a phone approximately once a week. Not all Marines utilize this opportunity as the line is often long and some choose blessed sleep over an extended wait in the heat. But every one of them misses their friends and family back home and they constantly envision their joyous homecoming day.
I hope to have something more concrete to pass on soon.
Take Care,
4th LAR A Co. KVA

Sounds like the Major's son is pronouncing some Iraqi city like me, Tuh-tahl.

7/14/2003

Wednesday, July 09, 2003  
Lets Not Forget All Our Soldiers on Foot, the Army; sorry that our Fighting Soldiers can’t all be Marines & Sailors in this War. While reading this, imagine being the age of 19; today there is one less Teen Soldier, Pfc Chad in Iraq, no longer a teen, 20. Being a Teen Soldier in Battle, Outstanding!

[E-mail for families of the 173rd Airborne Able Co 3rd Plt]
To the Wives and Families of Able Company,
First, let me begin by assuring you that all of the troopers are doing fine. We thank you for all of the mail and the packages you have sent. A little bit of mail goes a long way to keep morale up and we truly appreciate it.
It seems like this deployment has been marked by a series of strange and seemingly unreal events. On 26 March we jumped onto Bashur Drop Zone and landed in the most God-awful mud you could ever imagine. By the time the men made it to the assembly area they were unrecognizable. They were simply muddy blobs with white eyes. Luckily, the temperature dropped into the low 40's and we got to spend our nights freezing in the rain.
Three days later we were brought to a prison that Iraq used to hold Iranian POWs during the Iran-Iraq War during the 1980s. The men affectionately named it castle Gray-Skull. Our first night there the son of the commander of the local Kurdish fighters brought us tea served on a silver platter. It might have been a hole, but for a few nights it kept the rain off of us and we finally dried out.
We then returned to the airfield at Bashur Drop Zone where we guarded various locations as the Air Force expanded operations there. We made a few trips down to the city of Irbil to drop of supplies, but that was about it. The big question was when we were going to leave the airfield and go south to do something.
On April 8th our company was sent south along the Green Line with the Special Forces soldiers of FOB 102 ahead of the rest of the battalion. Two days later the rest of the battalion arrived and it turned into a race to get to Kirkuk. The Peshmerga were driving across the ridgeline by every means possible, bus, dump truck, trash truck, and even donkey carts to do one thing---------------loot the hell out of the city. The SF guys were driving their Land Rovers and we were driving our HMMWVs and and a bunch of acquired local flatbed trucks in hot pursuit of them. It was definitely one of those "hurry up and go" moments.
On the 10th of April alone the battalion seized two airfields and the K1 oilfield. We operated for a few days out of the second airfield then moved into the city. Initially we went and occupied the government building after kicking out about 400 of the Peshmerga looters. The guys somehow managed to get the local engineers together, got them out to the water and electrical plants and got the power and water turned back on to the city.
Our next chore was re-establishing the police in the city. While 2nd Platoon was dealing with the politicians in the government building, 1st Platoon established the Rahem-Awa Police department in the north of the city and 3rd Platoon took hold of the Qoria Police Department in the south.
The men learned how to be policemen and in turn trained the locals on how to police their own town. At first our guys were the ones who really did all of the work, but gradually the police have assumed more of an active role in the city. From training the police to equipping them the guys have done an outstanding job and I'm proud of them.
A few weeks back we went down south to Balad about 30 kilometers north of Baghdad along the Tigris River to participate in Operation ............ Strike with the 4th Infantry Division. There the company conducted a series of raids to round up targeted persons as the battalion's main effort and performed superbly.
We're back in the city now and just loving every minute (that's not true.) Rest assured that all of us here wish that we were home. Don't get me wrong, we love this fly-infested, desert paradise called Kirkuk, but the thrill is over. Unfortunately we haven't heard any word yet of our redeployment, but we're keeping our hopes up. If they told us we had to be on a plane in 5 minutes and the airfield was on the other side of the airfield we'd make it with 4 minutes to spare.
Tomorrow we'll be celebrating the 4th of July here. Our little abode in the city is actually pretty nice (it was very kind of the Ba'ath party to leave it to us) . Our Interpreters assure us that they have 135 T-Bone steaks lined up for us. I don't think that many T-Bones exist in this whole country, but I'm keeping my fingers crossed. We've had some horse shoes made, but unfortunately won't be able to drink beer during the game..............regulations I'm afraid.
I hope you all enjoy your 4th of July. Just remember that your loved ones here think about you constantly and miss you very much. The 1SG and I couldn't be prouder of these men. They truly are the best and I honored to be among them. I look forward to seeing you in Italy (hopefully very soon!!!!)
Sincerely,
Captain E. Baus Able 6


Italy, what the USA is not good enough to come back to now, sure Chad when the time comes have a great vacation, err return to duty-station.

7/09/2003

Friday, July 04, 2003  
"Rolling Destroyers"
[E-Mail]
Hello Everyone,
I spoke with Major Miner and am glad I can send out an update today. Many of you have emailed me with concerns as the media has been reporting more tense situations lately. Major Miner's command statement for June 30th is as follows:

"Everyone in 4th LAR Alpha Company is okay. We are still performing similar duties as I have reported in the last few statements. We are based out of an Army facility near the town of Yousifiyah (spelling still hasn't been verified). We run regular missions in and around the city of Yousifiyah helping to rebuild the infrastructure. We are providing funds and security to help rebuild police buildings and forces, youth centers and other civic places. We are talking to the people of the city to try to help them in the rebuilding process as well as to attempt to get information regarding the recent ambushes similar to the ones you may have heard in the media. We are taking very aggressive counter measures against the potential ambushes of some of the patrols. Although the Marines are on occasion in dangerous positions, their commitment to staying alert and ready at all times has stopped many ambushes from being initiated. We are mostly operating as platoons to conduct these missions. As you may assume, we are very busy."

Some of you have asked about different information regarding things you may have heard from your Marine/Sailor about these missions. The Alpha Company Marines often work in conjunction with Army units. It is not unusual for LAR missions to include traveling tens or hundreds of miles in a day or two. They are seldom one big company performing tasks, but will send a platoon here or there (and occasionally individuals) as needed or requested by their own command and commands from other units. It is the duty of reserve units to augment and support active duty units as necessary to the success of the mission. This can take on many different forms for Alpha Company as our vehicles are very versatile. Many of the Iraqi people (both for us and against us) refer to our vehicles as the "Rolling Destroyers". They are more fearful of our presence than the presence of other units, such as infantry soldiers who are often transported in Hum Vees or other non-armored vehicles. Alpha Company is truly a menacing force that the "bad guys" are more afraid to attack than some of the other units. That is one of the reasons they are working so hard these days.
I do not expect to receive another update for a week or so.
I will be off-line for the next four days and unable to send out or respond to any emails. If you need it, which I hope you don't, the number for the American Red Cross is 1-800-951-5600 in the case of life-threatening emergency to an immediate family member of your Marine/Sailor. If you need assistance with other non-emergency matters, you may wish to refer to the list of resources and websites in the newsletters or contact MCCS One Source at 1-800-433-6868.

The key point of this email that I'd like to emphasize is: "Everyone is okay."
Take Care,
4th LAR A Co. KVA

7/04/2003

Thursday, July 03, 2003  
C-Span has been running nightly, Rebuilding of Iraq, showing USEF touring around Iraq and evaluating its rebirth; the video was taped mid June 2003. Not a lot of our military is being shown, yet you will see what your Soldiers sees daily.

E-mails With Updated Mailing Address, includes more than one
Hi Everyone,
Below are excerpts from an article from the following web address:
http://www.wmbb.com/features/military/MGBG3V3KQGD.html
This was sighted by KV and mentions the city near which Alpha Company is currently stationed. Thanks KV! Also, the following web address is an article focusing on LCpl MacDonald, the fallen hero of Bravo Co.: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A37415-2003Jun26.html?nav=hptoc_m
I bet for many of us, this year, Fourth of July will have new meaning.
Take Care,
Jennifer Miner
A Co. KVA

June 9, 2003

COALITION AND IRAQI POLICE WORK TO MAKE IRAQ SECURE (June 9, 2003)

CAMP DOHA, Kuwait -- Coalition Forces continue to aggressively patrol Iraq to eliminate crimes against people and property, rid populated areas of weapons, ammunition and explosives, and stop the black market trade in fuel and other commodities. Coalition Forces also continue to conduct joint security patrols with Iraqi police to increase the professionalism of the police force and prepare them for their role in a self-governed Iraq.

Weapons Turn-In Program:

Iraqi citizens voluntarily turned in a variety of weapons under the Weapons Turn-In Program that began June 1. As of today, Iraqi citizens have delivered to Weapons Collection Points a total of 44 pistols, 67 semi-automatic rifles or shotguns, 232 automatic rifles, 24 machine guns, 78 anti-tank weapons (i.e., rocket-propelled grenade launchers), 101 grenades and other explosive devices.

The amnesty period for the Weapons Turn-In Program will run through June 14.

Coalition Activity:

...Marines from the 4th Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion raided a suspected arms market in Al Yusufiya yesterday, capturing four individuals. They also took 12 AK-47 rifles, 2 light machine guns and a shotgun...Hi Everyone,


I spoke with Major Miner. He has issued a statement as follows:

"Everyone in Alpha Company is O.K. It is very hot! It gets up to 120 degrees and the locals call the place we are in "Hell's Oven". We are currently south of Baghdad in a small city called Yousifiyah (uncertain of the spelling). Most of Alpha Company is together, with the exception of a few Marines who are currently stationed in Kuwait for a short tour of duty helping another unit load ships. We are currently our own task force. We are still running small security operations and other civil military operations rebuilding the infrastructure of some of the small cities. Some improvement projects include schools, youth centers, police stations, etc. We are helping train Iraqi police forces, acquire uniforms and equipment for them and get them accustomed to standard law practice. Due to the uniqueness of our unit as far as mobility and fire power, we are the only unit in the area that has such a high level of capability. That makes us very useful and very busy. The Marines/Sailors of Alpha Company are doing a great job. In the few recent instances in which their combat skills have been put to the test, the Marines performed very well due to the fact that they are staying alert and are always ready."

I think that may have been the most my husband has put into a statement this whole deployment. He is not one to ramble on about the details, I'm much better at that, so I'd like to explain a couple of things to help put your minds at ease. The first is, the fact that they are so versatile with the light armored vehicles being able to move rather quickly yet still have big, huge guns (in layman's terms), that is one of the main reasons why Alpha Company is so coveted and still there even with a majority of Marines returning. Also, they have conducted their missions so well, it's hard to give them up. The whole war is still called "Operation Iraqi Freedom", however, it is broken down into smaller submissions with operation names that you may hear in the media. Our task force is not part of another operation, which will remain nameless. This is confusing, I know, but I'm hoping that when you see an injury in the media that this will help you rule out the possibility that it is your Marine/Sailor. 4th Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion is still part of another task force and they have been referenced in the following article sent to me:
http://www.cnn.com/SPECIALS/2003/iraq/war.tracker/04.25.index.html

Another issue: Mail
We have a new mailing address effective immediately. Please use the following address for sending all letters and packages:
{This is an example for my brother not sure if it’s for your Marine too}
Rank, First Name Last Name, USMC
Co. A, 4th LAR Bn
UIC XXXXX BOX 1796
FPO AP 96426-1796

If you know your Marine's/Sailor's platoon, you may wish to write this on the bottom of the letter/package as it will help them to sort it out once it arrives to the company. It is not necessary that you write their platoon on the address. If you do not know your guy's platoon designation, simply write the address as you see it above.
If you have sent mail to the other address that has not arrived yet, it will eventually get rerouted to this new address and find him. I know this is a major point of frustration for all of us. I appreciate all of you who have emailed me saying that you've written/called your Congressman/woman on this issue. It is truly out of the hands of anyone in the chain of command for our battalion. There is little that I can recommend other than keep writing and hoping for the best. Also, if you're sending packages, try to remember that your Marine/Sailor has all the basic necessities for survival and that he has to carry around in his pack anything that is not edible or that can be distributed to others. There is no place for storage as they are constantly on the move.
I realize that to many it seems like an eternity has passed since the departure of Alpha Company. Just to put it into perspective, you may wish to access the following web address that is an article about a reserve unit that has been committed for an extraordinarily long time of 17 months and are now finally deactivating:
http://www.usmc.mil/marinelink/mcn2000.nsf/main5/6492AAA8AD9AC92085256D4A007A3DEF?opendocument
Alpha Company has been deployed less than 5 months, eventhough it may feel like years.

I hope everyone is hanging in there. I truly look forward to when I get to meet all of you in person at their homecoming!
Take Care,
A Co. KVA


7/03/2003

Wednesday, July 02, 2003  
[Letter to my family]
Happy Birthday Lance Corporal, LiL Bro on your first birthday in Iraq, you're One Year Old, in Iraq. Well if the family was all together we would have said it in unison. Just to share some thoughts in keeping up the spirits and morale like all celebrations will.

Where was the oddest place you celebrated a Birthday? For me in Montana with Great Grandpa, there were even bears that summer trying push their way into the cabin as I slept by the door. This happened because we fed them hoping to gain some pictures close up.

If your wonder when LiL Bro may be coming home, lets remember his order were up to one year and it may be a really neat experience for Him. Have been told by a few Marines who are in the 4th LAR Battalion that they know “of” LiL Bro and some have returned already. Yet one Sergeant said: hope I’ll get to know him better when I return, return? Also keep in mind that after WWII, soldiers were being sent to Japan out of boot camp, this after the war was all over. LiL Bro is part of the early occupational force in Iraq. He could have been stationed in Okinawa, Japan for several years as some Marines are right now. Unfortunately for these Leather Necks they are the first group and have to do the dirty work so future men can come too. I’m sure you are all concern for his safety, remember God’s Will is our Peace. This may be God’s Handy Work for these men’s future endeavors in life. Also, keep in mind, LiL Bro saw the walls where the the original phrase was coined, The Writings on the Wall, how neat is that.

Back to his safety, lets remember he has a weapon he carries and may be safer there than the streets we live. Think about the murder rate numbers they throw out for cities comparing past years to present years. It’s a false number because as time marches forward you have better healthcare and technology. So at present day people are recovering from being shot in the head but in the past a wound to the hand would kill you through infection. So in reality today’s numbers along with future murder rate numbers are really lower in comparison but may seem higher due to population growths. The real number to be looking at is attempted murder. In light of this thought, think of all the murders that have occurred or have been attempted since April 1st 2003 in the USA.

The unrest in Iraq is not so complicated when you think of this quote: Birds of a feather flock together. Saddam was a criminal and so, anyone with real authority, was a criminal too. Now how do you police Iraq when the criminals and the police live next door to each other in the same tribes. The policeman does his duty but when the criminal recognizes his identity he then uses extortion so he may still have his way through threats or even kidnapping the police’s family members. Then the police quit or turn a blind eye for their family’s safety. Unless you can find a police force that the criminals can’t extort this will be, that is why the US soldiers are the best they have. Not all Iraqi people are bad least we forget too.

Now I wrote this because we have to start having better morale for the troops, your Marine. We are Christians and our party gifts to the world on this celebration: we can’t let the bitterness carry over to the troops. We all have an OSN, yet Paul the Apostle wrote in Romans; Do Not Make Your Fellow Man Stumble. Take Vietnam, mind you this is Iraq, the Vets whom are bitter or feel forgotten are sinning yet their generation sinned first by letting it happen by their rhetoric & selfishness during those times, my honest opinion. Any Vet who feels forgotten, it is their problem, as I never forgot, plus celebrate twice a year with a public holday if not more. But if we don’t think of the present times in Iraq and leave the pasts were they belong by focusing more on the current troops we are doomed to the possibilities that the same Vietnam scenario may occur when these soldiers return. It’s their day ALL, let them have their spotlight and eat the cake too, folks, they’ve earned it. Today my LiL Bro will shares his Birthday with the soldiers whom deserve the celebration the most, all our military men/woman in Iraq.

Happy Birthday to you LiL Bro, and wishing you many years to come.
Today LiL Bro when you hear 22 shots being fired, may it be in tribute to your age.

7/02/2003

 
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