February 15, 2006

Dude...

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Things have been insane at work lately. I'm not even talking about the carbombs or anything. Sadly, that stuff doesn't bother me anymore. I've been so busy with work that I just haven't had time to do anything (like update my website).

And I didn't get down to Diwaniyah or Tallil, so I will visit them when I return from Ukraine and Romania.

In the meantime, here are some older pictures I never got to post...

The photo above is one of Saddam's many pools, from one of his many palaces. Deceivingly peaceful, isn't it?

Behind those trees is the Tigris River, and just across that are thousands of dirty, disheveled homes, belonging to people who will probably never even see a pool like this, let alone swim in it. What a nice thought.

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In contrast to Iraq is Kuwait, where every 17-year-old drives a Ferrari. Well, not really (and I'll probably catch hell for that comment), but the good people of Kuwait live considerably better lives than most Iraqis. I'd even say that Kuwaitis live better than most Americans.

The photo was taken in either in Salmiyah or Sharq (Kuwait City), at one of the many marinas along the coast.

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This next photo reminds me of something you would see in Israel. We're looking at the perimeter of FOB Courage, Mosul, in northern Iraq. Click Here to see photos from that trip.

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Winter is almost over in Iraq, but we still get lightning and occasional rain. In the corner of the photo, a streak of lightning flashes from behind the palm trees.

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Blackhawk helicopters take off from Washington Landing Zone (LZ), here in downtown Baghdad. While there are other helicopter pads here in the International Zone (IZ), this is the one I frequently use. Other than that, my only options are the Rhino (armored bus) to the airport, or hitching a ride with a PSD (Private Security Detail).

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Cruisin' around the compound at night. This is where I live. Looks like a Motel 8...sort of.

Now, for you paranoid types who think I'm giving out too much information here, relax. HUMINT (Human Intelligence Gathering) is much more sophisticated than you think, and the "bad guys" already know where everything is. Ever looked at Baghdad on Google Earth? 'Nuff said.

Back to the photo - so much of this place reminds me of that movie, Jurrasic Park. From the "Marlboro Men" walking around with AK-47s, to the metal storage containers, giant armored vehicles, and palm trees everywhere, sometimes I feel like I'm living on a movie set.

A few paragraphs ago, I mentioned an armored bus called the Rhino. I have pictures somewhere...just need to find 'em. If you really want to see what they look like, click here.

I will update again, before I leave for vacation. I still have to get out of Baghdad and fly to Kuwait. Oh boy!

Until then...adios.

Posted by Dan at 04:57 PM | Comments (3)

February 20, 2006

Oh yeah!

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My last night in Baghdad...for the next several weeks, that is.

I start my trek to Kuwait tonight. Since Baghdad International Airport is a 13 km drive from the International Zone (where I live), I have to figure out my ride ahead of time, because my flight to Kuwait is tomorrow.

Once in Kuwait, I get to hang out for a day, before flying to Kiev. And then, after a week, I fly to Timisoara, Romania!

Here's one last sunset picture.

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I'll update the site when I get back in a few weeks! Woo hoo!

Cheers.

Posted by Dan at 07:09 PM | Comments (4)