Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Continuation (Part 4)

Moore and crew: These guys roll with Kangas (and us). Very aggressive posture. They look sharp, roll tight. Good for making bad guys rethink their strategy.

Samurai practicing for battle. (Yours truly).

I'd pay anything to have one of these in my garden. How apt a pose for Saddam, (face down in the dirt).

The view from the back seat. Crossing a bridge back into Rusafa after leaving Sadr City.

My roomate Phipps back in Germany.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Continuation (Part 3)

Some of the gang enjoying our last beer for a long time at our transit point in Germany.

Kangas and Crew: These guys (different unit) take us out on our missions in Baghdad. Superb curb service.

My Translator, "Johnny", clearing his weapon (as we all must do) after a mission.

Jafar, Achmet and Hamza. These are some of our cleaner guys. All deaf.

Same guys, plus myself and SPC. Tripp.

Friday, June 23, 2006

Continuation (Continued)

Pivoting 90 degrees north from the same spot, this is the view looking back toward the pool and Palace. A labyrinth of sandbag walls, trailers and narrow walkways.

From left, Phipps, Ahmed (one of our advisors) and I in front of the Presidential Palace. (We live behind it). We (Phipps and I) were promoted here one day earlier.

Phipps, (or "Fiss" as he is known among the tribes) in front of the same Palace from a different angle.

Me by the pool in front of Saddam's banyan. This is the tree he was reputed to do alot of his ruminating and brooding under. As for what decisions might have been made under its canopy, imagine what you will.

The view under the canopy. Perfect rendezvous for conversation, information exchange, and cigars.

Phiss demonstrating how this is done.


I wasn't kiddin. Phipps is my height. This is the view from his noggin up.

Damn Birds!!! There's birds up in these date palms all the time, and they launch "indirect fire" at us all the time.


Hi Friends and Family! This is my first attempt at a blog. Its much easier than mailing you all pictures. These you can save, download, email, print or all of the above. Wish I'd thought of it sooner. I should get better at this as I go along. Apologies for the appearance/incoherence of this first iteration.

Cliff Phipps and I share a trailer with two other guys behind the Presidential Palace, (now serving as the American Embassy). This is where our story begins . . .


The Neighborhood: Our place is the stairway on the left. Notice the sandbag walls covered in canvas. These house at least one scorpion. I've seen the bastard. Movin' and turnin like a tank. Cliff Phipps, my roomate - known in Arabic as "Phiss", stands in front of one date palm for perspective.

These trees tower up to 120 feet overhead.