Skip to comments.Michael Yon: Superman
Posted on 07/16/2007 2:11:55 PM PDT by neverdem
Route Tampa is the major supply route for Coalition forces in Iraq. Billions of dollars worth of gear and supplies are pumped up the northbound artery, while rumbling down the southbound vein back to Kuwait are damaged vehicles, units returning from a year or longer at war and convoys of empty trucks. Along the way, thousands of blue, black and clear plastic bags twirl, swirl and skitter in the hot dusty winds. The bags ramble about like so much plastic tumbleweed; aligning along the wind, drifting along the desert currents until they catch on nettles, concertina or the shards of wreckage. On those summer days so hot machines and bodies begin to falter, the air inside the bags is heated just a few degrees more, enough that some bags spontaneously buoy and drift away.
(Excerpt) Read more at michaelyon-online.com ...
This is a pretty good tribute to the Stryker and our magnificent troops.
It's hard to tell what's made of sterner stuff - the Strykers or our troops?
What brave young men we have. May God bless them all.
His writing is outstanding and I am very thankful he is willing to risk going over there to give us an honest portrait of our troops. If only a few more media types shared that honesty and dedication.
Bump for later.
Awesome story. Thank you so very much for posting it. Yon is a treasure.
Yon is himself a hero in the WW2 tradition of American war reporting. He has truly inspired me.
Superman and the General Lee.
God Bless our amazing troops!
Thanks for the ping
I second your comments on this amazing story about our warriors and their equipment.
Many thanks for the Ping! What a wonderful writer and the wonderful men he chronicles.
Yon is the best.
They take a licking and keep on ticking.
Hammering the enemy
for later read
Mr.Yon is the true literary descendant of Ernie Pyle, without any doubt...
An amazing story about the tough Strykers and the even tougher men who man them.
Wonderful writing about this wonderful Stryker group..Amazing!
Michael Yon is awesome.
From time to time, Ill ping on noteworthy articles about politics, foreign and military affairs. FReepmail me if you want on or off my list.
Thanks for the ping.
I loved his article on the Brits. It was right after the Iran stuff when all were peeing all over the Brits military. It was a wonderful report...and showed how brave the Brit military truly are.
Thanks for the ping!
Thanks for the ping!
I wanted it posted for the benefit of all the FR military "experts" who absolutely ripped the Stryker when it was first announced. They predicted every bad thing possible for it, and it has proved them completely wrong.
Yet another reason to question the "experts".
I love reading about our heroes!
Thanks for the ping.
I couldn’t believe my ears and eyes this morning - on ABC’s Good Morning America they aired a Michael Yon Video. Chris Cuomo did the story. He gave him credit, even showed him in the video. It showed real combat scenes. I was thrilled to see him getting this coverage, but it wasn’t really a positive video - with soldiers complaining about how overworked they are. I’ll search around to see if it get’s posted on UTube or somewhere.
You cannot discard every legitemate concern about the Stryker because somebody writes a great story. People who’ve worked with, driven in and lived in combat vehicles have had legitimate issues with the Stryker from the start. Not all of those concerns have been alleviated.
Where did I do that? I merely pointed out that legions of so-called "experts" around here questioned things like its mobility and protection. Issues that have been proven to be completely wrong.
People whove worked with, driven in and lived in combat vehicles have had legitimate issues with the Stryker from the start. Not all of those concerns have been alleviated.
No, really? It isn't perfect? Go figure.
I just read a journal article on some proposed improvements to the M1. Already a pretty robust system, no? But there's always room for improvement.
Some around here predicted the worst for the Stryker, and they were proven wrong.
Your original post referenced “all the experts” and many of them, through education, training and experience were, indeed, experts. Many of their concerns were valid and remain so.
The Stryker was part of a “interim” vehicle program that was supposed to be followed by the delayed/defunct FCS. Many of the target points of the Stryker were missed (specifically, air-deployability aboard C-130 aricraft). This was a significant concern because getting the Stryker to the battlefield was already a huge hurdle. As it is, it takes TWO C-130s to meet the original objective and even then it requires some wrenching to do so.
I like the Stryker because I’ve spend 16 years in the M113-based variants and it was, indeed, a huge improvement. I longed for a more reliable, more on-road maneuverable wheeled FDC vehicle to replace my M577 command track. I literally drool over the CP variant.
I, too, think that those who predicted “disaster” were mistaken. As it is, the FCS program is nowhere in sight and the Stryker will likely become much more than the “interim” vehicle proposed. With that in mind, deployability concerns become more of an issue. Of course, if the DOD would get off its ass and extend the C-17 line in California, this shortcoming would be heavily mitigated.
That is the real good news of the situation. The Stryker does work. And well. But not enough for the "rogue nation" enemy which can do all its scientific work over in Iran...and then effortlessly...and without consequence... infiltrate their combat teams across the Iranian border armed with the latest weapons and tactics.
What do you think of the multiple versions of MRAP coming on line now? (Perhaps two years too late to make a real difference now in our political-support avalanche situation) They sound REALLY tough.
With that in mind, deployability concerns become more of an issue.
I suppose the MRAP will have similar issues.
Of course, if the DOD would get off its ass and extend the C-17 line in California, this shortcoming would be heavily mitigated.
Actually, that wasn't the DOD...so much as the Bush Administration refusing to keep the C-17 alive. They CHOSE to kill it. They have hinted they thought they could "outsource" the logistical need or buy some sort of commercial Airbus replacements for less. (All of which happy-horshit turned out to be rather badly mistaken).
Over and over, this supposed "business manager" has proven to be "Penny Wise, and Pound Foolish. Don't blame the Pentagon for that one.
That little collossal stupidity has "WHITE HOUSE INTERFERENCE" thumbprints all over it. Totally ARBITRARY funding limits on the DOD...IN A WAR.
And ignoring that the best equipment is needed...like the C-17.
Just like the NAVY ship complement implosion that Bush has orchestrated. Not the Pentagon's fault. Bush imposed ARBITRARY AND FOOLISH Navy budget limits...irrespective of the Xlinton legacy to our fleet. The White House refuses to budget strategically...squandering assets, nor budgeting for replacements or sustaining of the existing base of the arsenal.
This president was not kidding when he said, and I quote: "I never wanted to be a War President."
He clearly still doesn't. Even when it is thrust upon him. He is continuing to deplete our strategic forces.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.