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sobo

Kandahar Kountdown

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It's official, and you heard it here first (not posted on FB yet) - 9 days and a wake-up! Wheels up March 25...

 

Now, if peeps over there would just quit shootin' up kids & burning sacred texts, things would be just peachy... :rolleyes:

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Not happy to hear that - you keep your head down and watch your ass. Here's to hoping this will be your last deployment.

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geez sobo...be careful. how long are ya there for. does this mean no summer climbing on the clearwater?

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Sobo, keep your head on a swivel and don't trust anyone.

 

But, you knew that already.

 

Good luck,

 

d

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Heads up over there dude. Is this work or Reserve? If work, what are doing? You don't have to kill me if you tell me do you?

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OK, I'll try to answer everyone in just one post...

 

Joe-

If I like it/suits me, I'll do two tours. Every one of my co-workers there is on their 2nd or 3rd deployment. One's on his 4th! :shock:

 

ivan-

No worries... the spice must flow... :)

 

minx-

Initial deployment is for 13 months. No climbering on the SF this season... :(

 

CF-

"Watch yer top knot!" :o

 

dougd-

Yes, yes I did...

 

Jim-

Work. I'll be directing/leading a group of folks that could best be described as the civilian version of combat engineers.

Telling you any more than that... yes, I'd hafta kill ya... ;)

 

Billy-

Thanks, man! :)

I'll be fitted for a gas mask, flak vest, and a Fritz. The beard will have to go, I'm afraid...

 

oly-

Subcontracted to a PMC.

 

Doug-

Thanks, man. Sure will. LOA papers have been turned in to CWMR. I'll miss all of the reaccreditation nonsense... :rolleyes:

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Can you post some trip reports? I'm sure you'll be watching out and taking care of yourself but we'd love to see what you see.

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Matt,

I expect that I'll be allowed to take some pics and tell the folks back home what's going on. We'll have internet and Skype in camp, although the bandwidth is not very large. I was just funnin' with Jim up there. I won't really have to kill anyone... I hope. :)

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Subcontracted to a PMC

 

In what capacity...? I don't think you'll be going back - we'll be out of there by then.

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Official title is Project Delivery Manager. A vertical move up from a project manager, which is my current job description. Same kind of work, just a lot more of it. I typically manage a half-dozen or so different projects and clients at a time. Now I'll be managing a couple dozen projects simultaneously for only one client - the US Army. Basically, I'll be responsible for ensuring that the final design and construction of all of the logistical support infrastructure for the troops in the western half of Afghanistan gets completed on time for the Army to move into the new encampments. This would be things like barracks, dining facilities, triage centers, water supply and treatment facilities, sewage treatment facilities, garbage incinerators, roads, airfields, helipads, etc. Like little cities, all over western Afghanistan...

 

And you're probably right. The schedule says mid-2014, but the way things are going over there, what with wacko staff sergeants shooting up kids, other bozos burning sacred texts every other week, even more bozos pissin' on dead bodies and posting the vid on the YouTubez, and Hamid calling for us to get the f*** out early, I may not even be able to complete my first deployment. That would be a shame, cuz I'm really looking forward to this. Probably my biggest adventure yet... even bigger than my 4-month walkabout of the USA on my motorcycle when I was 20.

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After three tours in that part of the world and dealing with all of the "fun" things one can experience over there.. I have only 3 bits of advice for you.

 

1 run when they tell you

2. sleep when you can

3. use as many mind altering chemicals as you can get your hands on( just kidding)

 

Oh yeah. bring lots of digital porn.

 

on a serious note. Be safe. they really want to kill you and will go to amazingly stupid ( and wicked smart) ways to do it.

 

PM if you need anything. I will probably be right behind you

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Have you been in-country before? Or is this the first time?
Nope, first time in a war zone. Excited, yes. Nervous, yes. Still gonna go? Yes.

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After three tours in that part of the world and dealing with all of the "fun" things one can experience over there.. I have only 3 bits of advice for you.

 

1 run when they tell you

2. sleep when you can

3. use as many mind altering chemicals as you can get your hands on( just kidding)

 

Oh yeah. bring lots of digital porn.

 

on a serious note. Be safe. they really want to kill you and will go to amazingly stupid ( and wicked smart) ways to do it.

 

PM if you need anything. I will probably be right behind you

GPL, Thanks for Tips 1 and 2. I'll pass on Tip 3. :toad::noway:

 

I've been made well aware that certain elements of the indigenous population are out for any American scalps they can get. I'll be watching my top knot, to be sure. I'm not going there to become a statistic...

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Hey Sobo! IMHO I think it's AWESOME about your new job! You'll meet tons of cool folks! Do you get a tax free salary while you're there?

 

So exciting! Stoked for you, Bud!

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Have you been in-country before? Or is this the first time?
Nope, first time in a war zone. Excited, yes. Nervous, yes. Still gonna go? Yes.

Man, what gruntpltleader said. I gotta say I am definitely not a fan of contractors in war zones or the military outsourcing this way, but it is what it is and sounds like you're headed out.

 

I'd say it's one thing if you can do your job without leaving the base in Kandahar, it's another if you're going to be traveling all over W. Afghanistan to all these various bases.

 

If the latter, you'll want to get as assertive as possible about what form of travel you are talking about - humvee vs MRAPs, super stallions or blackhawks vs old chinooks or other claptrap. Just try to get whatever control you can over when you travel, in what, and with whom. I'd personally take my chances in the air to stay off the roads.

 

And what's happening on the personal armor front? Do you know exactly what you'll be supplied with?

 

I'd really recommend getting a hold of a couple of the guys here like serenity and AK offline who know what the fuck they are talking about and try to separate what you're being told by your company and what you're likely to encounter.

 

Again, please get real assertive and clear about taking care of yourself - we definitely want you back home safe and sound, preferably sooner than later.

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I'd really recommend getting a hold of a couple of the guys here like serenity and AK offline who know what the fuck they are talking about and try to separate what you're being told by your company and what you're likely to encounter.

 

This is pretty solid advice.

 

Be safe, take pictures, tell stories, & come home, we still have a date for Lightning Dome one of these days.

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Have you been in-country before? Or is this the first time?
Nope, first time in a war zone. Excited, yes. Nervous, yes. Still gonna go? Yes.

Man, what gruntpltleader said. I gotta say I am definitely not a fan of contractors in war zones or the military outsourcing this way, but it is what it is and sounds like you're headed out.

 

I'd say it's one thing if you can do your job without leaving the base in Kandahar, it's another if you're going to be traveling all over W. Afghanistan to all these various bases.

 

If the latter, you'll want to get as assertive as possible about what form of travel you are talking about - humvee vs MRAPs, super stallions or blackhawks vs old chinooks or other claptrap. Just try to get whatever control you can over when you travel, in what, and with whom. I'd personally take my chances in the air to stay off the roads.

 

And what's happening on the personal armor front? Do you know exactly what you'll be supplied with?

 

I'd really recommend getting a hold of a couple of the guys here like serenity and AK offline who know what the fuck they are talking about and try to separate what you're being told by your company and what you're likely to encounter.

 

Again, please get real assertive and clear about taking care of yourself - we definitely want you back home safe and sound, preferably sooner than later.

Joe-

My job will require me to travel about southern and western AFG a fair bit, like prolly 50% of the time while in country. Travel is primarily by helicopter, chiefly Blackhawks. Ground transport is extremely frowned upon. If there's no other way to get me to a site by helo, then ground transport is undertaken, with me in Level 4 body armor and a Fritz inside an APC in the middle of a military convoy. I'll also be issued a CBRN mask as part of my MOPP. I've been advised to keep the Fritz and the BA handy at all times.

 

I've already been PM-ing to GPL and akhalteke. GPL's responded; AK has not.

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