Growing Salads in Extreme Environments

Inspired by James' comment in the second salad post:  How about Iraq?  Here are some photos I took myself back in the day.

A model farm our Civil-Military Ops cell and ePRT were helping the Hamdani tribe set up.  Traditionally Iraqis would irrigate the way the ancients did:  they'd route water from the Euphrates or Tigris to flood a field in great trenches.  The sun evaporated much of it.  We taught them to make small mounds of earth, and lay tubes with holes in them atop each mound.  Evaporation was reduced substantially, meaning that much more land could be irrigated with the same water. 

The guy in the blue shirt and ACU armor was (and is still) a US State Department diplomat.  At that time he was head of the ePRT.  I will withhold his name.  He was a good guy, though.  The guy in the khaki pants is one of his people. I mention this because the State Department gets a lot of the blame for what happened later, and its leadership deserved it.  Not all of them deserve it.  Some of them were right there outside the wire with us. 

A simple pump moved the water from the old irrigation channel to the overhead tank.  Once it was overhead, opening the valve would cause it to gravity feed to conduct the irrigation. 

An American soldier attended by children, name also withheld, in those salad days of 2009 before the precipitous withdrawal plunged the nation back into war.

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