Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Letters from the War Zone

Here is a letter that somebody wrote to Michael Moore (I agree with the author* of the letter). It has been published on his website you can read it by following this link:

"...count to 10 when the memory hits..."

* indicates that the author may be known by Zach ;)

Here is Donka Roo (also hand drawn by Zach). He has 4 legs but only 2 feet, GO DONKA ROO!!! Posted by Hello

Here is Sad Cow (hand drawn by Zach himself) boy he's sad can you guess why? Posted by Hello

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

This one is for you PJ. I found some rope so now I rock (for those of you who don't understand this please see the comments from the "people I work with" posting Posted by Hello

Monday, March 28, 2005

Help Spc Long out

Spc Long has a dilemma, he has lost his running shoes. He is now doomed to a life of wearing flip flops when he wants to work out... If you think of a place where they might be then by all means post the location here. Oh, and feel free to make a little fun of him as well (hey we all do dumb things). Well I gotta go help him look for them so until next time... How was your Easter by the way? One more thing, if you happen to have a pair of HOT PINK running shoes send them to Spc Long in Iraq to help a soldier out (do your part for the war effort). If you really do have some pink shoes just send them to this address and I will make sure he gets them (or feel free to send anything crazy you think we may need over here, ie. 30ft of rope, a horse saddle, an old ski pole, whatever...) We always love getting mail and sometimes it doesn't really matter what's inside, it's the thought that counts right?

Sgt Zachary Scott-Singley
FOB Danger
APO AE 09308

Just another picture of the bombed out palace (pic from the side) Posted by Hello

Here is the main palace of Sadam in Tikrit. We call it the Bombed Out Palace. Posted by Hello

Friday, March 25, 2005

Happy Easter Posted by Hello

Here is a picture of my friend and co-worker, Specialist (soon to be Sgt) Nick Beech Posted by Hello

I have been trying to stay in shape here in Iraq, tell me how you think I am doing. Just to the left on the hill is the minaret that insurgents use as a reference point to mortar our chow tent (which is about 100 feet infront of it on the other side) Posted by Hello

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Another Day Another mortar

It is like ants scurrying around right now over here because we just received some mortar rounds (still trying to confirm where they hit and if there were any casualties). As I write this you can hear them hit... Don't worry though I am inside the house where I live and it is very sturdy. Also all my guys are ok so that is good. It reminds me of before during the war when mortar fire or incoming artillery was a normal thing. I think they have stopped now. I am going to get going now but I just wanted to tell you I am safe (in case you see on the news or something that FOB Danger was hit by mortars).

Take Care and be safe,


Monday, March 21, 2005

Here is the building I work at tracking and catching bad guys Posted by Hello

me Posted by Hello

Sunday, March 20, 2005

Some unfortunate news

I am on my way to bed right now, but just a little unfortunate news for all of you out there who follow my blog. My friend Az had to quit working with the U.S. forces today due to a death threat on him. I went by to go say hi and he was on his way out of the Iraqi National store (where he works selling watches). When he saw me he said told me about how there is a man in the market where he picks up his watches who said he thinks Az is working for the Americans and if he doesn't stop he will be murdered. Az is not only quitting his job, but he is moving to a different city and taking his mother, father, and 2 sisters with him. I asked him if there was anything I could do to help him and he said no, he was very upset when I saw him and he said, "I don't know why God has put you in my life as a friend just to have our friendship over so quickly!" I told him if he ever gets an email address that if he emails me I would continue to be in contact with him (he has my email address). It makes me angry that this is so common here, but I am glad that he is still alive and I pray for his safety.

Take Care until next time,


Wednesday, March 16, 2005

This is patio of the house I live in. Just trying to give you an idea of how things are for me. The living conditions are so much better than last time, it doesn't even compare. Posted by Hello

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Just outside my house in Tikrit Posted by Hello

Sunday, March 06, 2005

My friend Az

I would like to inform all of you loyal subscribers of my friend Az (name left out for his protection). He is Kurdish (from the far north of Iraq) but lives currently in Tikrit. He works in the Iraqi national shop on my FOB (forward operations base). Last time I was here you could go and get anything you wanted from the Iraqis at their shops off the bases, but now it is against our GENERAL orders to purchase anything from the Iraqis other than those on the FOBs. I can only guess that this is because people were purchasing 'bad' things last time like alcohol and because of the danger of traveling in military convoys now. Well, back to Az, he is a couple weeks younger than me, we speak in Arabic together and I usually go to his shop (a watch shop where they have any authentic looking 'expensive' watch you could want from Rolex to Mavado) a couple times a week for an hour or two. The watches actually, look really nice (I am thinking of getting one just to say I have a Rolex or something)... The problem for the Iraqis is that working for the Americans is dangerous and many are killed because of it. For example about 6 months before I got here they had an Iraqi who was a barber and another who gave massages and they were both found, killed with their hands chopped off. Az wants to be a teacher someday and would love to visit America. He is completely amazed that I am the same age, yet I have a wife and 2 kids. He is overly kind (just like most Arabs), the last time I saw him he had only one chair and refused to let me stand (I HAD to sit while he stood). Another thing that I like about him is that he works his butt off for 7 dollars a week (he told me that if he wasn't working for the Americans he would only be making about 2 dollars a week). That 7 dollars goes to his family who he lives with, his dad can't work anymore (due to injuries) and there is no work for women that pays anything here. I have offered to give him money as a gift (like 10 dollars) to get something for himself or perhaps for something for his girlfriend (yes he has a girlfriend, but the Kurds aren't as strict about males and females talking, smiling, calling, etc... With each other) He still has to be careful about who knows he is her 'boyfriend' (like when he calls and she doesn't answer he has to tell her father or brother or whoever that he accidentally dialed the wrong number). Anyway, he flatly refused my money and would have NONE OF IT. I am writing this because I have seen how it is for the Iraqis who work honestly for their money and would like to do something to help my friend, if you have any suggestions please tell me. Thanks and take care.

Zach Attack

Friday, March 04, 2005

Hey again, life in Iraq is same as ever

Something I forgot to say about that last post... That memory is from my last trip here (during the war), life has been much better this time around, however I can't help but think of how bloody things continue to be over here. I wasn't posting for a bit because 2 of the Arabic translators (like me) left for a couple o' days and I had to cover down on their shifts as well as my own, but they are back now and so I will be writing again. I thank those of you who follow my blog and encourage you to share it with others you know (or even if you don't know them). I apologize about any offence taken to the language in the post prior to this one, that is just how things are in my mind when I think about that so I figured I would be honest with my words as well. Take care and be safe. Feel free to comment as well....

Zach Attack

Some thoughts never go away...

I am always wondering what it is going to be like when I am a civilian again. Soon it will stop being just a thought and will be my reality (scary and exciting) I hate the army but one thing it is is stable, I have a job, money, and healthcare... I was dealing with PTSS, one of the good things about it though is if your willing to discuss the things that caused it (like when I saw that little boy get shot in the head and had to interpret for his uncle who was holding him with pieces of skull and brain on his immaculate white shirt splattered with surreal bright red) it actually gets easier to bear... It will never go away (or I have been told) but I can go on with my life now, for about 8 months it was always in the forefront of my mind (constant daydreams about the incident). It makes me sick still to really think about it, but it is like a memory that I always go back to and wonder around in... You know how you might have something you remember and as time goes by it gets fuzzy? Not this, it stays crystal (I mean fucking crystal) clear the way the corn field next to the truck was, how the shirt looked, the boy's head, the drink of water I took after....etc... It is all perfect in my memory and the details feel sharper than normal, (like those laundry commercials, the whites are whiter, the brights brighter) and combat is like that as well. It is like your brain operates at this one level (lets say like 60-65%) and then when shit really happens your adrenalin totally kicks in and everything slows down (almost like in the movies when shit gets technocolor, and slows down) and it stays like that until your body calms down (as if your mind suddenly started operating at 100%) it is a feeling that I think could be addicting (the part where it seems like your mind has finally started operating at 100% and things have never been that clear or simple before, live or die, run or fight, survive or surcome)...Anyway, enough of my ranting. The combat memories are one thing... The little boy is something totally different (I never want to see that happen to another child as long as I live).

Zach Attack