Wednesday, June 04, 2003

How are the families of our servicemen and servicewomen holding up while their loved ones are in Iraq? Here's an email to a newspaper reporter at the Savannah Morning News from a member of a 3rd Infantry Division's family:

I am contacting you as the spouse of a 3rd Infantry Division soldier who is currenly serving in Iraq.

My husband has been gone since September 2002. His unit was on of the first to deply. They lived in tents, but had access to showers, port-a-potties, and freshly made food. They did their own laundry in buckets when the contractors were unable to handle the job. As the entire division moved in, access was limited to showers but sill available. At the end of February 2003, they moved into the desert. No showers, no bathrooms, no tents. They lived in the desert, in their vehicles and personal tents for three weeks befor ethey were given the order to move into Iraq.

"The road home leads through Baghdad." Thise was their focus. They had a mission, they completed it. With great hardship and loss of 35 sons, haubands, brothers, and fathers. After mid-April, the soldiers were no longer in combat mode, but had changed to peacekeeping mode. Still no running water, no showers, no bathrooms, living out of vehicles and tents or a bombed out building. But morale was high, their focus turned to awaiting their replacements so that they could return to their homes, families, and rest!!!

Their replacements arrived, and responsibility for Baghdad was given over to those replacements.

But their return isn't going to happen now, not anytime soon. The soldiers of the 3rd ID have been given a new mission. They are once again to be in combat mode, being sent to the Fallujah area to take over, because the FRESH replacement untis have lost 9 soldiers in the past week. But our soldiers are far from combat ready. Having redeployment snatched away at the lst moment, morale has plunged! They had endured so much hardship and horrors that most of us will fortunately never experience. Their equipement is not battle ready either. Parts for the repairs of the equipment were ordered but not delivered, or in some cases, never orded at all. They would turn in the equipment to contractors in Kuwait who would do the repairs.

Being sent back into a combat area with low morale and broken or nearly borken equipment puts every soldier's life in JEOPARDY. Whether through possible equipment failure or human error due to fatigue and the inability to focus on the important job at hand, they are in even greater danger than when they fought their way to and through Baghdad. These are brave and strong soldiers, men and women. They have fulfilled their mission and need to be sent home. Fresh soldiers need to take their place, if more soldiers are needed than had ben initially planned.

I pled with you to intervene in whatever capacity that you can, on the behalf of the soldires of the 3rd ID. Help us to get our soldiers back, safe and sound. They have been gone far too long and bore too much of the responsibility for this war! We all need your help in getting the powers that be to see that fresh troops are needed to complete this mission with working equipment, not our battle tired soldiers and their equally tired vehicles.

Please help the soldiers and the families of the 3rd Infantry Division of Ft Stewart, GA.

Sounds like our guys in Iraq are getting tired. I may have been totally against this war, but I still support our troops over there. It's not their fault that Bush is an idiot. Let's hope they can come home soon.