Not Just A Number

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by tomahawk6, Oct 20, 2004.

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  1. The following is an email which I think illustrates the dedication and sacrifice of the US serviceman/woman in Iraq. During the tough days in April when the insurgents mounted an offensive there were email accounts of soldiers/Marines who although wounded refused evacuation to return to the line or of men in the hospital that returned to the line. I imagine there were similar accounts for our allies. I know of an instance where 2 Thai NCO's on guard duty saw a truck drive straight for their main gate. They stood their ground firing at the vehicle. The truck detonated killing both NCO's but the base was saved. Every nation has similar stories. The soldiers of the coalition are giving the people of Iraq a gift - a chance at freedom and self determination. They may not get another opportunity in our lifetime. But if they are successful then the blood and treasure will have been worth it. The US and the UK saved Europe in WW2. The US spent billions to rebuild Europe and we lost thousands of soldiers in the effort. But everyone agrees that it was worth it. I think our effort in Iraq will be seen to have been worth it as well.

    So what's new around the country? Things here in Iraq continue along. We had a great deal of fighting the other day, just lots of gunfire then quiet. Usual stuff.
    Some time ago we had a farewell for our Brigade Executive Officer, who left to take command of a battalion in the Fourth Infantry Division. We all did skits lampooning him; some guys could not get their video to play on the video player, so a panic ensued while we transferred digital to video and back trying to get it together. We ended up with a US video player and needed a US video, so we took my buddy Dennis Pintor's home video and recorded the skit on the end of the recording of his daughter Rhea collecting Easter eggs around the house.

    When it came time to show the video, we had re-wound it too far, so we had the entire Brigade of officers watching Dennis Pintor's cute little daughter run around looking for Easter eggs and waving at her father far away. It was actually pretty cute, because Dennis narrated the whole time, and because everyone with kids missed theirs too. "There she is, ladies and gentlemen, Rhea Pintor, waving at her daddy," he said.

    You would be surprised at how seriously people around here take these farewells. This could have actually been a disaster, but Dennis chiming in with his commentary on his daughter toddling along kept everyone smiling; even I was laughing. The home video had the usual terrible, home video, yellow-green quality, but it was easy to get passed it for the brief moment he transported us all back home to our own loved ones.

    Captain Dennis Pintor was killed with his entire vehicle crew a few nights ago, just a kilometer from the base camp at 10:52 PM. You guys will miss him even though you never knew him, because he believed in defending his country, and he knew that a lot of the bad guys he captured here were out to kill Americans wherever they could find them, and he therefore believed in this mission.

    As an engineer, Dennis spent a lot of time rebuilding, and in many ways he was very lucky to be able to help the Iraqi people directly, with concrete missions fixing roads (ha ha) and repairing bridges he could look at later to know he had accomplished something. He even went out of his way to help the Palestinians in his sector.

    Because of the nature of my job, I always try to remember that the people we kill on the other side are also humans, that they also have families and brothers and sisters and wives and children. Some of them, I have seen, did not even have shoes on when they died. It is an almost forgivable poverty they fight from.

    What makes a difference to me is that their goals are to turn this country into one with fewer freedoms than before we came, to enforce an extreme religious government that suppresses liberty and worse, exports their intolerance. It makes a difference to me that when we raided the Kufa and Imam Ali Mosque we found hundreds of bodies that had been tortured and executed. Some had had their eyes drilled out; others - men, women, and children - their genitals mutilated; almost all – men, women, and children - had been sexually assaulted. Holy warriors indeed.

    Dennis knew this too. For the life of me I cannot get the memory of his little daughter out of my mind; I can't forget Dennis narrating her laughter and her toddler's speech. He was, of course, a great guy. He and his driver and gunner will be 1067, 1068, and 1069 on a list somewhere. To me three of them were the best of friends, and they were Americans dedicated to defending and sharing freedom.
  2. That's right - most wedding parties seem to be receiving a JDAM and a couple of Hellfires these days :D
  3. a very good read,
    i think this should be published for any anti-war protester to read.
  4. And why was there a total media black out on this? Why did we hear nothing of it? Why did a few broken tiles get huge amounts of cover, and the mortars/MGs stationed in the mosque and firing out get none, let alone the atrocities?

    Shocked and appalled...
  5. Shocking and appalling indeed - if it's actually true, which I seriously doubt. :?
  6. I agree, chickenpunk

    My recollection is that after the Sadr 'militia' withdrew from the Imam Ali mosque (August?) there were media reports at the time about civilian bodies who had allegedly been executed. Like, a dozen bodies. Haven't had time to find a link to the original story.

    A new story about hundreds of bodies has been spawning in the US media in the past couple of days. I can well understand that it will have taken time for investigators to put together the full picture. Hundreds of bodies, however, is a fairly specific claim and it is hard to see why it was not reported fully at the time, if true.

    Another problem with the email quoted by tomy is that it refers to a "raid" on the mosques, which again was not my impression from the media at the time.
  7. Sounds like a load of bollox to me! :?
  8. All thats missing is an illustration of babies on bayonets :evil:
    sounds like propaganda sensitive all American boy protecting innocent civilians, faced with the evil of the non-human foe.If this was the truth it would have been spread all across Fox / CNN in full gory detail when it was discovered.
  9. Exaggeration aside , I think it is truly sad that a man is killed who worked tirelessly to improve the lot of the Iraqis.

    I've just read this link

    Helping his fellow man, or the less fortunate , seems to be something Capt. Pintor loved to do.

    Condolences to the family , friends and colleagues of Captain Pintor
  10. Palestinians???????
    wrong country bud....
    nowt like bulling up the yankees patriotism..
    what utter Bollox :evil:
  11. why is it that when a yank talks about atrocities in Iraq, its automatically declared b*llsh*t? and cries of, well the media didn't report it?

    hmm, this is the same media that takes such an even handed approach in the middle east. ..... like the Jenin massacre, that never happened, but did anyone hear about that?

    maybe this guy exaggreated, maybe he didn't but unless someone on this site can put hand on heart and say, "oh i was there, and no it didn't happen" then I'll happily believe that militants that mortar their own hospitals can also drill the eyes out of torture victims.
  12. I am surprised about my apologies to any iraqi palestinians.. seems that no one wants you??? unlucky...
  13. There were media reports about atrocities at the Imam Ali mosque when the al Sadr people vacated the mosque. Although it wasn't widely reported.
    As has been previously stated there are indeed Palestinians in Iraq, last count was 70,000. The reason why there is strong support in the US and our military is because of personal emails like this when they write to family and friends. If it were otherwise then you would see massive anti-war protests. As an aside there are very positive feelings in the US for the UK and the support you have given us. Blair is very popular and his support while unpopular in the UK is most appreciated in the US. In the various tribute vidoes/slide shows I have seen all include thanks to the UK and express support for your troops. On an airborne forum I lurk at when there have been paras killed their stories are posted. It is afterall an international brotherhood. Americans were quite touched after 9-11 when the Coldstream Guards band played our anthem.