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Update from Afghanistan 2

November 15th, 2009 Posted in Military, Personal/Website

(All my Afghanistan tour photos are located here…)

Hi all!

Well here I am now almost 1 month on the ground in Afghanistan, and
woh boy does it feel as if I’ve been here for ages! Busy is the
standard around here, which is by far the way we like it as it keeps
the mind (mostly) from wandering to nicer places not in this country
(back home, upcoming hlta, etc). Now that everyone of our guys are
here, we’ve jumped to full bore operations; doing a lot of patrols
(walking and driving), shura’s with local leaders, finding and
exploiting IEDs like their going out of style, and much of the usual
army stuff. When the Vandoos got to my place, the area was a rats nest
of bad guy activity. Through their time and now my time here we’ve
made huge leaps and bounds forward security and development wise. All
of the locals respect what we bring to the table much more than the
Taliban, even though its in an Afghan’s nature to always play both
sides. I’ve found everything about it very rewarding as I can actually
see the progress made toward a better future.

Though not everything is rosy and nice. As you’ve all probably heard
our battle group has already lost 2 really good guys to IEDs. Both
were friends of mine, Justin was a really good friend. I appreciate
all of your rememberance day and well wishes. All of us here are very
proud to be doing this, no one is doubting thier decision to be here,
and all of us know how strongly we are supported by great people like
yourselves back home.

On a lighter note, you may see my photo in the Times Colonist. I
hosted the minister of defense and minister of industry and pamela
wallen from the cbc here. Showed them around my little area of
operations and talked about the local security and development
situation. You may notice me by my large red mostuashe ;) Our corner
of the country is quite a popular one with many of the in and out of
country big wigs, but as usual happens everywhere when it rains it
pours. Everytime they show up it seems as if the rats nest stirs up
and we’re running to trap ‘em again. But its all fun, a wierd kinda
roughin it kind of fun, but we’ve got some good stories. For example,
i had a shura where most of the old men decided they really wanted a
peice of one of my “security advisors” and flirted with him as much as
they could, I could barely hold back the laughter as he was blushing
up a storm trying to explain that he had a wife in canada, though none
of them believed him and some were quite desparte to get him home,
offering up land and guesthouses!

The situation around here seems to continually be up in the air, so I
really don’t know how the rest of the tour is going to look like. But
the one thing I know for sure is I highly doubt I’ll see very much of
KAF, which pleases me because the place just feels like a gigantic
mega base, and really I can do without the extra niceities like fresh
coffee and shopping boulevards. We’ve got cold showers, a mini gym, a
bunch of jimboogily’s (aka junk food), afghan food, occasional phone
access (when it works and there are no operations going on), some slow
internet, dusty hot days and cold desert nights. Whats to complain

I appreciate very much all of the emails I’ve recieved to date. They
are the best distraction I have around from the daily bump and grind.
I really wish everyone nothing but the best, stay healthy and have a
great time adventuring!


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