They Said It Better Than I Ever Could...


These words that I write, they keep me from total insanity. -Charles Bukowski

Who is the happier man, he who has braved the storm of life and lived, or he who has stayed securely on shore and merely existed? -Dr. Hunter S. Thompson

Feb 20, 2009

Are You Fucking High...

With apologies to my dear mother, who hates my profane nature, I ask this question, albeit to myself just about every day I spend here in beautiful, now sunny, Afghanistan. Are you fucking high?

There is no way around wondering about the mental capacity of those appointed over me. I can’t help but think that it must’ve taken at least a moderate amount of brain power in order to achieve the rank that they hold. However, there must be some sort of E-8 and above opium den that they all use to concoct the missions that we go on here.

And with that, I begin today’s diatribe. We have two line platoons here. Their company identifiers are 1st and 3rd. 1st is the platoon I am in, and apparently we are the only ones here capable of going out on mission. Now at the risk of pissing some of the guys from 3rd platoon off, which I don’t really want to do. The only one holding them back from all of these missions and being fully functioning and contributing members of this company is the commander. I don’t know why but he has basically confined them to the FOB. Maybe they are jacked up, maybe they aren’t, all that really matters is that the commander will not let them outside the wire. So for all intents and purposes, we have to do everything. The only thing that they are capable of doing is watching the towers. That’s it.

So there is another thing called QRF. Quick reaction force. Their job is simple, be ready at a moments notice to go outside the wire and assist with any and all situations that are occurring within 15,000 meters of the FOB. Okay, so they are supposed to always be ready.

Now the mission platoon, which is my platoon, trades off. One squad plus one team from another squad runs that particular day’s mission, and the other squad plus the two teams from the middle squad are off. Then the next day we switch around. Keeps you from having to go out everyday, and it keeps some fresh eyes and ideas on the missions. So I think it’s a good thing.

However, since the commander thinks that 3rd platoon is a bunch of imbeciles, we have to do it all. You see QRF is supposed to be derived from the tower platoon. Yet, even with that asset the commander chooses whenever something happens outside the wire that requires some help, he chooses to send the other half of our platoon to help them. Unfortunately, he never tells us that this is what he is going to do. We should already know, “Whatever sucks the most” right? Anyway, so are guys had a broken down vehicle today. So we got notified that they needed our help. Sadly, we were not ready for this. It’s not our day for mission, so we don’t have all our shit wired tight like we should.

So we spend about 20 minutes getting all of this shit together, grabbing ammunition, guns, trucks, drivers, and whatever else we need. Finally, we are about 5 minutes from rolling out the gate and getting our boys back...

Then the word comes down from the commander that QRF is going to get them. Not us. Okay, but because the commander never lets them outside the wire the other platoon, who is supposed to be ready at a moment’s notice. Obviously isn’t. Which sucks major ass. So let’s take stock. One platoon who never goes out. The other platoon who wasn’t supposed to go out. The platoon who wasn’t supposed to go out, was allowed by our wonderful commander to get everything ready and be about 5 minutes from leaving, when he decided in his infinite wisdom to send the other platoon who never goes out. Who was obviously not ready, and had to spend all their time doing all the same stuff that we had just got done doing, except they had to do it to their own trucks. Now they spend another 20 minutes doing it and have just now left.

This is not good. There are certain things that truly anger me. One of them being when a person regardless of position makes decisions that endanger my fellow soldiers, needlessly. The FNG’s fresh out of basic training can figure this one out. The group that is almost ready is the one that should go, not the one who has to start the process all over again and complete all the work that the first group has already done. Ridiculous, we just cost my boys who are stuck outside the wire with a broken truck 20 minutes. Try sitting still for 20 minutes doing absolutely nothing, it can seem like a lifetime. Now try throwing into the mix getting shot at by some insurgent who sees you as a convenient target of opportunity. That thankfully, is not happening, but it could.

This is the kind of decision making that really makes me despise my chain of command. There is no logical reasoning that I can come up with in my head that could explain this. The only thing that keeps running through my mind when I see the commander and the executive officer, and the operations NCO’s and the First Sergeant, and all of the guys who work in an office, staring at maps, and moving little GI Joe’s around a table, and who write up all the mission briefings and the intelligence reports and all the rest of it...

ARE YOU FUCKING HIGH????

Now I am done.

Later,

I love you mom...

4 comments:

  1. see my latest post on my blog. it seems that being a soldier and working in an elementary school are not that different afterall. I once had to do crisis intervention between to second grade teachers over glue sticks. i shit you not. I wish you could transport to a kindergarten class, I swear it cannot help but reset your mood.

    ReplyDelete
  2. mudpuppy...new layout looks nice!
    Is there weed over there? It makes no sense placing any of you in harm's way!

    ~AM

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hi MP,
    Just unbelievable...and yes, dangerous for the guys outside the wire who are sitting ducks until someone shows up to get them. A QRF is by definition is supposed to be "QUICK!" Maybe the bozos playing with the maps and what-not will change the name to SOQRF...Sort-of-Quick Reaction Force. How you deal with frustration of these experiences is beyond me. Take care MP.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Quantum Binary Signals

    Professional trading signals delivered to your mobile phone every day.

    Follow our trades NOW & gain up to 270% a day.

    ReplyDelete