Two items on the Iraq war. First, a USCENTCOM press release:
An Army unit assigned to I Marine Expeditionary Force, discovered and defused an explosive-laden youth center in Ramadi Nov. 4, which was rigged by insurgents to detonate and potentially kill dozens of Iraqi children. They also discovered more than two tons of explosives hidden in a mosque.Hat tip: The Corner.
Second item: BlackFive has an interview with a member of the Army Guard's medical team. "I came to this country hating the Iraqi people," he begins:
In the arms of the soldier was a crying baby wrapped in pieces of cloth. Neither man spoke English more than a few words, "Baby, no good. Please."It's worth it.
I unwrapped the baby to expose a terribly distended belly, feet and legs that looked like filled water balloons ready to explode. His cry was pitiful. I told a medic to call for a physician and the surgical team. I escorted the two men and two children to our exam room. It was evident that there was a serious problem with this tiny baby.
After assuring the men we would try our best to help, I was able to ascertain that the baby was 3 months old and that the civilian hospital in Baghdad had sent the soldier away, telling him they could not help.
I saw a man who very much loved his son begging us to save his baby. He frantically tried to soothe his cry, gently kissing his cheek. My heart went out to him. I took the baby's vital signs as the physician assistant examined him. He determined that we needed to get the baby to Baghdad to our larger military hospital as soon as possible.
We had the father get out of his uniform and put on a scrub top so he would be a little less conspicuous — Iraqi soldiers are often targeted in Baghdad. The baby and his father were on their way to hope....
Many times I wonder if it is worth it. Then I think of the 3-year-old boy dressed in a suit watching his daddy graduate as a new Iraqi soldier. As he runs toward me, I am in battle uniform and ballistic armor, with weapon at high ready. He smiles big, waves and says, "I love you, American!" Yeah, it's worth it.