Here we are, in the final month of the Iraq war, and as I expected, it doesn’t feel any different this far in the rear. As a computer guy at a headquarters, I’m about as far from the war effort as one can get: I’m supporting the people who are organizing the people who are in charge of the people who are actually doing the work.
It is, by all accounts, an incredibly well-ordered withdrawal; mundane, even, despite the vast scale. Meanwhile, Pakistan is cutting off our land resupply into Afghanistan, and Russia is threatening to choke off the so-called Northern Distribution Network (NDN), which could precipitate a serious logistical crisis for NATO. The retrograde from Iraq is just a continual reminder to me that we should’ve left Afghanistan years ago, as it’s a strategic, logistical, and economic dead end. I’ve written about this before (as have others), and my point still stands.
Yesterday night while walking to the latrine trailer for my nightly oral hygiene ritual, I witnessed a pair of soldiers embracing outside one of the female barracks buildings. Maybe they were a couple; General Order 1B doesn’t prohibit hugging or having relationships, just no serious hanky-panky. But then they kissed, making me d0 a double-take, looking much like Dolza (pictured at left) when he saw Rick Hunter kiss Lisa Hayes. I guess I’ve been away from the World for too long when something like that surprises me.
Speaking of, there’s a civilian worker at the help desk whose name is Lisa Hayes, which is funny to me, since I sometimes picture her working on my trouble ticket on the bridge of the SDF-1.
The brutal Kuwaiti winter is fully upon us; it snuck up on us, without warning, and now it’s a bitter 40 degrees in the morning, sending everyone to their duffel bags, digging for long-forgotten fleece jackets, hats, and gloves. Most of us hardy Minnesotans (intoned with the proper accent, doncha know) scoff at such accoutrements of true winter, but the continual wind here does warrant some additional clothing. Still, I’m pretty sure no one needs to equip Layer 7 of the ECWCS, despite the fact that I saw a soldier wearing the parka one morning. I wanted to ask him if he was on his way to Antarctica, but thought better of it.