Thoughts about deployment extension from a soldier in Iraq
Posted On April 11, 2007
The following comes from a pissed off soldier in Iraq. He can identify himself if he wants to. For now, I think we should call him A. Nonymous.
So, if you have not heard already all active duty soldiers in Iraq will be extended for three months. I know for the most of you that doesn’t sound like alot, I remember when I was a civilian, days just flew by and holidays seemed to pile up on eachother and again it was christmas time and you would have to scamper around to buy gifts. Time does fly but not here in Iraq. I will tell you honestly, the first foot you place in Iraq is when you start your count down, the clock starts and you can’t wait to be home. We all are damn proud to serve our country, of course many of us wish this deployment was more honorable. But we are soldiers and when they call upon us we don’t turn our back on our country. That said, I want you to know no matter what any politician or officer says on the tv about morale staying high in the face of the extenstion, well that is bullshit. total and utter bullshit from what I see here. Its one thing to extend but its another to sugarcoat and say that the soldiers are taking it in stride. I think we are in the stages of accepting loss, and I think the first stage is shock and disbelief.
There is a chance I might be home on our regular time because we are a national guard unit and the secretary of defense said it would not affect the marines , national guard, or reserves. But I am in a guard unit under an active duty brigade. so who knows. we have an expression in the millitary, ‘expect the worst, hope for the best’ so my mindset is that we are getting extended 3 months.
but isn’t it strange that the marines have 7 month tours, and navy and airforce have 6 month tours, while the army is going to extend tours to 15 months. um… the serectary of defense was saying it would be fair for us to extend so the other army brigades get at least a full year of rest before deploying. Am I the only one who sees the huge elephant in the room. Why doesn’t the other services pick up some slack. Surely Navy people don’t need to be in a boat to serve? I mean you go where the fight is, am I right or wrong.
My uncle called me up and asked if I could call my nephew because he was thinking of joining the Army. He asked me to convince him not to join. interesting. In some ways it was the first time I had thought of what I would do if someone asked me for advice. Now my answer is clear as crystal. HELL FUCKING NO! Now don’t get me wrong, it hasn’t been a terrible choice but there are many many ways you can serve this great country with out getting screwed by the man. I would say volunteer locally, or join the peace corps, or the coast guard for that matter. But now joining the Army is a terrible idea in my opinion. And I don’t give a damn what any former vet or current soldier thinks, because at the end of the day its your own ass on the line, and of course your army buddies will have your back, and most will give thier lives for yours, the most honorable people I have ever met are in the Army, but God Damn it if the politicians in this country and officers don’t give a damn about you and just care about achieving rank or political motives or making rich fat cats richer. So if you join the army you will meet some amazing courageous honorable people but you will put your life in the hands of complete utter slime politicians. and don’t think this is a minority opinion on my behalf.
It was funny one of the commanders at the begining of the year asked my why I looked so glum and he reminded me that this was the last September we would have here in Iraq. That really pissed me off , that was literally inviting a jinx. so now there is a chance we are staying another 3 months, this is like playing a board game and seeing the end in sight, and sorry, getting dealt a card, go back to the middle of the board…awesome.
plus, I really don’t know if having people extend is such a good idea, even voluntarily extending, because there is no way anyone who is here for a year is at all motivated to stay on. when we started we had a few soldiers who volunteered to stay an extra year. patriotism? no strictly for the money and they had the worst attitudes in the world. and as this deployment has gone on I can see how our attitudes are becoming how thiers were.
Oh wait!!!! I just realized that my low morale only empowers the enemy. I guess I am the reason we are losing the war and its not the ineptness of….I won’t even finish that sentence. I just love how corespondants on tv can gab away and say shit like that on tv. I guess you are seeing the transition from shock and disbelief to anger, great Stage 2. so happy to be here. just feel like to punch someone in the face right now! repeatedly!