Skip to comments.North: Operation Iraqi Freedom 10 Years On (Part 1 of 2)
Posted on 03/15/2013 9:00:09 AM PDT by jazusamo
WASHINGTON Some holidays are unforgettable. If I sit down and think about it, I can recall where and with whom I celebrated nearly every Christmas of my life. That's not the case with St. Patrick's Day an inexcusable lapse, given my maternal Irish heritage. But wait! There is one St. Paddy's Day that springs instantly to mind. It was exactly a decade ago, and I vividly remember it, for I was being chafed and chided by scores of old friends for how badly I had embarrassed myself on live television.
It had nothing to do with Guinness stout, green beer or Irish spirits. As our friends in the States prepared for St. Patrick's Day 2003, Griff Jenkins, my Fox News cameraman/field producer, and I were embedded with the "Red Dragons" of Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 268 at Ali Al Salem Air Base in northern Kuwait. There was little of anything colored green in our part of the world. The Marine aviators and Navy corpsmen we were assigned to accompany on the attack across the border into Iraq had even exchanged their green flight suits for desert khaki.
Now, as for "the embarrassment" still, 10 years later, one of the major hits on my blooper reel.
While we were in the midst of a live satellite broadcast on Fox News, the missile attack warning sounded. Known as "The Great Giant Voice" to the 200,000 U.S. and allied troops deployed in tactical assembly areas along the Kuwait-Iraq border, the alarm meant we had about a minute to get into a revetment or bunker. Though the Patriot missile defense batteries surrounding our position never failed to hit an inbound Scud, nobody wanted to be standing in the open if one of Saddam Hussein's Russian-built rockets got through.
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Thanks for the ping jaz. He’s a good man.
God Bless Ollie
Well, that one was funny, but then very sad. Thanks for the ping. War is hell, necessary, but hell.