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Been awhile…

October 4, 2010

Sorry to anyone that still checks in, as I’ve been away. But I received an email that I thought was worth reposting. As the son of a “Screaming Eagle”, with a cousin that served in the Navy, a brother in law that served in Vietnam, and another cousin that was a Tier 1 Operative this email was pretty powerful.

I haven’t fact checked, not sure if that’s possible, but it was a good read anyway.

From a Recon Marine in Afghanistan
From the Sand Pit: It’s freezing here.  I’m sitting on hard, cold dirt between rocks and shrubs at the base of the Hindu Kush Mountains , along the Dar ‘yoi Pomir River , watching a hole that leads to a tunnel that leads to a cave.  Stake out, my friend, and no pizza delivery for thousands of miles.

I also glance at the area around my ass every ten to fifteen seconds to avoid another scorpion sting. I’ve actually given up battling the chiggers and sand fleas, but the scorpions give a jolt like a cattle prod.  Hurts like a bastard..  The antidote tastes like transmission fluid, but God bless the Marine Corps for the five vials of it in my pack.

The one truth the Taliban cannot escape is that, believe it or not, they are human beings, which means they have to eat food and drink water. That requires couriers and that’s where an old bounty hunter like me comes in handy.  I track the couriers, locate the tunnel entrances and storage facilities, type the info into the hand held, shoot the coordinates up to the satellite link that tells the air commanders where to drop the hardware. We bash some heads for a while, then I track and record the new movement.

It’s all about intelligence.  We haven’t even brought in the snipers yet.  These scurrying rats have no idea what they’re in for.  We are but days away from cutting off supply lines and allowing the eradication to begin.

I dream of bin Laden waking up to find me standing over him with my boot on his throat as I spit into his face and plunge my nickel-plated Bowie knife through his frontal lobe. But you know me, I’m a romantic.  I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: This country blows, man. It’s not even a country. There are no roads, there’s no infrastructure, there’s no government. This is an inhospitable, rock pit shit hole ruled by eleventh century warring tribes. There are no jobs here like we know jobs.

Afghanistan offers two ways for a man to support his family: join the opium trade or join the army. That’s it.  Those are your options. Oh, I forgot, you can also live in a refugee camp and eat plum-sweetened, crushed beetle paste and squirt mud like a goose with stomach flu, if that’s your idea of a party. But the smell alone of those ‘tent cities of the walking dead’ is enough to hurl you into the poppy fields to cheerfully scrape bulbs for eighteen hours a day.

I’ve been living with these Tajiks and Uzbeks, and Turkmen and even a couple of Pushtuns, for over a month-and-a-half now, and this much I can say for sure:  These guys, all of ’em, are Huns…  actual, living Huns..  They LIVE to fight.  It’s what they do.  It’s ALL they do. They have no respect for anything, not for their families, nor for each other, nor for themselves.  They claw at one another as a way of life. They play polo with dead calves and force their five-year-old sons into human cockfights to defend the family honor.  Huns, roaming packs of savage, heartless beasts who feed on each other’s barbarism.  Cavemen with AK-47’s.  Then again, maybe I’m just cranky.

I’m freezing my ass off on this stupid hill because my lap warmer is running out of juice, and I can’t recharge it until the sun comes up in a few hours.  Oh yeah!  You like to write letters, right?  Do me a favor, Bizarre.  Write a letter to CNN and tell Wolf and Anderson and that awful, sneering, pompous Aaron Brown to stop calling the Taliban ‘smart.’ They are not smart.  I suggest CNN invest in a dictionary because the word they are looking for is ‘cunning.’ The Taliban are cunning, like jackals and hyenas and wolverines. They are sneaky and ruthless, and when confronted, cowardly.  They are hateful, malevolent parasites who create nothing and destroy everything else. Smart.  Pfft.  Yeah, they’re real smart.

They’ve spent their entire lives reading only one book (and not a very good one, as books go) and consider hygiene and indoor plumbing to be products of the devil.  They’re still figuring out how to work a Bic lighter.  Talking to a Taliban warrior about improving his quality of life is like trying to teach an ape how to hold a pen; eventually he just gets frustrated and sticks you in the eye with it.

OK, enough.  Snuffle will be up soon, so I have to get back to my hole.  Covering my tracks in the snow takes a lot of practice, but I’m good at it.

Please, I tell you and my fellow Americans to turn off the TV sets and move on with your lives. The story line you are getting from CNN and other news agencies is utter bullshit and designed not to deliver truth but rather to keep you glued to the screen through the commercials.  We’ve got this one under control The worst thing you guys can do right now is sit around analyzing what we’re doing over here, because you have no idea what we’re doing, and really, you don’t want to know.  We are your military, and we are doing what you sent us here to do.

Saucy Jack

Recon Marine in Afghanistan

Semper Fi

“Freedom is not free…but the U.S. Marine Corps will pay most of your share”.

A veteran is someone who, at one point in his life, wrote a blank check made payable to ‘The United States of America ‘ for an amount of ‘up to and including my life.’ That is Honor, and there are way too many people in this country who no longer understand it.’

7 Comments leave one →
  1. syphax permalink
    October 4, 2010 8:36 am

    For a different take on that region of the world, straight from someone who’s lived it:

    http://www.stonesintoschools.com/

    Note that Greg Mortenson has military cred:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/18/world/asia/18tea.html :

    In the frantic last hours of Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal’s command in Afghanistan, when the world wondered what was racing through the general’s mind, he reached out to an unlikely corner of his life: the author of the book “Three Cups of Tea,” Greg Mortenson.

    “Will move through this and if I’m not involved in the years ahead, will take tremendous comfort in knowing people like you are helping Afghans build a future,” General McChrystal wrote to Mr. Mortenson in an e-mail message, as he traveled from Kabul to Washington.

  2. nsilmike permalink
    October 4, 2010 9:57 am

    http://www.snopes.com/rumors/freezing.asp
    Snopes says it has been circulating since 2001. They call it ‘false’ but also say they cannot say it wasn’t originally from someone serving in Afghanistan. They also point out errors in geography, and other claims.
    I’m not sure what to make of this other than to take it as a strong reminder that serving there is no fun, not comfortable in the least, and those who do are highly deserving of our respect.

  3. stebo19 permalink
    October 4, 2010 1:46 pm

    These are some serious words that CNN should be covering, but I’m not sure if most Americans can deal with these realities of war and the sacrifices our troops make. We’ve turned into a ‘now’ society that has put the war on the back burner with the occasional mention in the news when it gets ‘extra’ tragic. Americans need to wake up, appreciate, acknowledge, support and thank men like Saucy who are fighing the longest war in our history. I thank every person I see in uniform. I shake their hand and thank them for serving. I’ve sent emails to Politicians and hired Vet where I work. I wish I could do more.
    I’m a war vet from Desert Storm and was fortunate enough not to have to deal with the shit our troops are dealing with. The proudest moment in my life was when I came home in uniform. I was going through Logan Airport and strangers were saying thanks to me. Than when I saw my family, my Dad, that’s the moment I realized the importance of what we do. So everytime you see someone in the Armed Forces, let them know your appreciation.

  4. rabbiofrock permalink
    October 8, 2010 11:21 pm

    As the husband of a soldier, I thank you Curt for caring for the troops and showing the ‘real’ faces of the war:not the media-fed stuff.
    And second, I’ve watched and re-watched the 30 for 30 on “Four Days In October”, and as a lifelong Sox fan, each year that passes I become more and more grateful for what that team did, for how you conducted yourselves, and personally for the sacrifices that you made not just for your team but for all of us who believed in you guys. Watching makes me even angrier at the pot-shots that “certain curly haired local Boston writers” take. You put your heart and soul into each game, played the game the right way, and the well of goodwill should NEVER run dry for you. Thanks yet again.
    -Ben Schuman (Native New Englander and Sox fan since birth in ’77!)

  5. tickandsired permalink
    October 12, 2010 2:59 pm

    Very entertaining e-mail. However, it could not have been written by a Marine, or at least an active duty Marine. No true Marine would ever speak of tactics either currently implemented, or tactics to be implemented in the future- not unless that Marine has forgotten about the UCMJ and it’s ardent parameters on the transmission of information or misinformation in live theater; especially divulging information involving coordinates and/or rough geographic position. If this is indeed a Marine presenting this kind of information on a public blog (which is doubtful), the rest of us who are indeed in the thick of the fight, should be worried- very worried.

    -CJR Maj, USMC
    3/8, 26 MEU

  6. 4idsoxfan permalink
    October 14, 2010 10:34 am

    What a great post … regardless of whether it’s 100% authentic or simply a novelized version of someone’s perception of their Armed Forces, it’s a great tribute to the men and women guarding the gates of our freedom.

    It also reveals that the author knows a little more about the “character” of our enemy than the pundits in the pop culture media.

  7. murphymp permalink
    October 21, 2010 6:13 am

    Nice read. Don’t care if it’s “real”. It’s a tribute to those who do and for the type of work we do! I’m in year 22 and still going strong. I’ve watched the Red Sox in more countries than anyone could dream. God Bless the USA!

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