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Rooftop Fighting Position
All last week - the first week in October that is - my squad was tasked out as a PSD (Personal Security Detail) for a high-ranking officer in our Brigade. During the week, we visited the Iraqi Highway Patrol Headquarters several times. It was a bad week to have to do this, because VBIEDS (car bombs) have been very common lately. The same morning this picture was taken, we rolled up on the scene of a VBIED just minutes after it had detonated at one of the gates leading into the "green zone." It was chaos at first - not knowing who to cover, or where the next threat is coming from. Often, they will send two or three VBIEDs in succession, trying to blow a hole in the outer security, and slip a second car bomb deeper into the green zone. - but the Iraqi National Guard were on the scene, as well as the US Army of course, and the situation was secured rather quickly. It helped to ease the tension when the Abrams M1 Tank appeared on the scene. We were in the way, so we got the hell out of there, leaving the smoking crater behind us. (It sounds like a great photo right, but when this stuff happens, I am far too busy looking for bad guys to even think of my camera - which is obviously the right answer.)

Here I am, up on the roof of the IHP HQ in a fighting position. I had a clear shot to the front gate. We were expecting trouble. Detonations could be heard in the distance, as the more the seventeen VBIEDs struck that day, but luckily, none of them came after the IHP HQ that day.

Monday, November 1, 2004
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