Subject: Afghanistan 27 July 2007
Hello all! Another week and meal down. Yes, I have been here 10 weeks now and a lot is still happening. We are in FOB Lightning (Gardez). We have been here a week so far with the exception of going to Camp Phoenix yesterday and doing a supply mission for the Afghan Border Police (ABP). We are planning to go to close to the AF/PK border again.
One of the guys on my team is leaving. He is getting promoted and will be the team chief of another team. I hate to see him leave but this is a promotion for him and for me. Not only will I be the S-4 (supply officer) but I will be the assistant team chief too. I keep my rank of Captain but this is a bigger responsibility and a lot more visibility.
We met with the ABP earlier and gave them a bunch of supplies. We gave our ABP station alone over 11,000 rounds of ammo and 30 +- RPG rounds. We also gave them hats, boots, fuel, and other equipment and ammo. This is a normal draw for them. They needed this stuff badly.
We went to Camp Phoenix in Kabul yesterday. This was an admin and re-supply and mail run. We also had to pick up some guys coming here and get equipment. This was my first chance to get back to Camp Phoenix since mid-May. I had to get a few things straightened out too. It is very hard to do when you are not there and I made sure that my paperwork was not ‘lost’ again. Seems they ‘lost’ all 4 other copies. It was an uneventful trip but coming home, one of the 5-tons that has been fixed 6 times in the last 2 months blew its engine so we had to tow it all the way back to Lightning. It is a 3-½ hour trip each way. During this trip, I saw one of the Bama boys, and we talked to him over lunch. One of his Humvees hit an IED a week ago. Come to find out, 2 of the men that were hurt, I trained with at Ft. Riley. The gunner was thrown out of the turret and got a busted lip and some bruises. The other guy I knew was hurt more seriously. He suffered a broken leg, his jugular vein was cut and he also had some other injuries. His injuries were so severe that he was sent back to the United States. The war for him is over. He has a new physical war to fight now.
This morning, I ‘climbed the rock’. Yes, it is a rock (mountain) shaped like the rock of Gibraltar (the Prudential Insurance logo) that is 9280 feet up at its highest peak. There were 5 of us to meet at 0430 this morning to attempt to climb it. Let me tell you, it is harder than it looks. We started climbing at 0600 and we got to the summit at 0800. We took our time climbing up since there were only 5 of us and after stopping every 50 feet since your lungs feel like they will explode. We made it. The view from there was worth it all. You can see the mountain that we climbed in the attached pictures. The Prudential Rock is not the highest point on the mountain. The highest point is the next ridge over so that is where we were, 9280 feet above sea level. It was funny so see helicopters flying lower than we were. We could see FB Zormat (about 8 klicks away and where I was stationed for a month). We could see the PRT (Provincial Reconstruction Team). We saw all of Gardez and the KG Pass (probably the hottest spot in the area as far as enemy activity goes). We even saw Roberts’ Ridge named after the Navy SEAL that was killed in late 2001 during Operation Anaconda. We were not really sure of which ridge it was but we saw all the ridges so it was one of the ones that we saw. We stayed on
Top of the World for about an hour before we left to come back. It took almost 1-½ hours to get back. Was it worth it? Yes. Would I climb it again? Maybe.
That is all that has happened last week. Not too much out of the ordinary. Just a real quiet week here in Afghanistan. It is nice that way.
Talk to everyone soon!
-Major Jason Carter
Jason lives in Hazel Green, AL with his wife, Linda. He has served for 19 years and had a total of 41 months active duty deployed after 9/11/01. He is a senior buyer in the electronic manufacturing industry and serves his country proudly in the Alabama National Guard. In his spare time he likes to metal detect, not only to stumble upon a few treasures, but to learn about the history of a place as well. “My greatest hope is that we all remember the sacrifices soldiers make to each other and their country.”