Skip to comments.In Afghanistan, Marines live a tough camp life
Posted on 12/14/2009 6:16:43 PM PST by Dubya
FOB HASSANABAD, Afghanistan The young Marines at this outpost could be on a camping trip to Hell.
The living conditions in Helmand Province, one of the worst regions for trouble in Afghanistan, are such that most of friends and family in the United States wouldn't consider putting up with them for one day, much less the months these men will be assigned here.
It's not even officially winter, yet temperatures routinely fall below freezing at night, and there's no heat in the tents. At night when standing guard in one of the security towers, the Marines put on layer after layer of clothes, including thermal suits. It does little to ward off the chill of the desert air.
There is no hot water. The only running water in the camp comes from a 3 inch diameter hose that jets out cold water in fire hydrant fashion. Clothes are washed in buckets, when time permits and the weather cooperates, then strung between tents and dried in the sun.
(Excerpt) Read more at mcclatchydc.com ...
The base they show in the video looks like the one my son was at in 2007 while in Helmand, they were with some Brits. It's a real hell hole. He's there now and where he's at makes this base look like a Holiday Inn. They are all crap.
One aside about Air Force and Navy bases. My son can never get enough of them when he gets to one. Steaks, lobsters and crab legs is all he talks about.
I read a great account in the excellent book “Imperial Grunts” by Robert Kaplan.
When writing the book, he spent time with men in far flung places that most Americans couldn’t even find on a map. From spending time with Special Forces guys in Columbia to a single Army Major in Mongolia, to Marines in Iraq, the book is an admirable account of those “rough men” who stand ready to do violence on our behalf.
What was interesting was his time spent with the USMC and how he described their spartan living conditions, from run down bases in mild disrepair in the United States to the conditions they live in overseas in combat areas. He said that nearly all Marines seemed to take a perverse pride in not living the easy life some of the other services do...
As a former sailor (squid to the jarheads) who only had to live in a climate controlled steel vessel with three squares a day, I take my hat off to them.
Thanks for posting it, RummyChick...
A bitching Marine is a happy Marine!
As in "Marines have done so much with so little for so long, they can do anything with nothing!"
I forget who to attribute that quote to.
My son is someplace in Helmand. He is a better man that I am. Good Bless our Military.
Sounds like KBR (not Halliburton - they are not involved in camp support) was not awarded any contract to support this camp.
My dad was at Iwo Jima and Okinawa during WW2 with the Army Air Corps. He told the story about a Marine who lived in a latrine and bitched like mad to get out. So they moved him to a palace. He bitched like crazy so they moved him back to a latrine.
He used to say the Marines would complain about the snipers, then they would complain because they had to go out and kill the snipers. Then they complained because they were bored because there were no snipers.
US Marines have experienced some of the harshest weather extremes of any combatants.
In particular, I read an excellent book called “Cold as Hell” about the Marines at the Chosin Reservoir in Korea, where the temperatures dropped as low as 54 degrees below zero.
The stunning thing was, many of these men had also fought on Peleliu, where the temperature reached as high as 115 degrees (not a peak, a consistent temperature) with no shade (there was no vegetation, and no place to bury the dead, so there were carpets of flies on everything.
That was 160 degrees of temperature differential. They went from broiling sun with no shelter to conditions where they built six foot high shelters from the stacked frozen bodies of dead Chinese soldiers.
And these were the same men who fought in both extremes, not just the same units. They were called up when the Korean war started, and even though many did NOT want to go back to war, they did.
Unbelievable. The US Marines are not just the “Old Breed” as described in a book by the same name, they are a special breed indeed.
The Viking Kitties are everywhere. Even in A-stan, they are fighting the ‘Rat infestation.
You can’t even spell Halliburton right.
They haven’t been in the mix for sometime.
The Marines had the crappiest of everything until they relinquished some control. I ate in Marine DFAC’s which were poorly run with shitty food and little of it to boot.
The minute the Marines decided others might serve meals and build base facilities better, their standard of living went up.
I visited a few B sites in Iraq before the Marines relented and gave up control. Once they gave up total control, they began to receive good services like they were entitled to.
It’s all about control. Control.
Marine history isn’t noted for logistics. From their own thin logistics tail, to depending upon the Navy, or worse, the Army.
Classically, Mairnes are shock troops, for short, high intensity actions.
To hike the ball, take a knee, and die at times to give Present O(b+)ama political cover. Then, return home hopefully in 2011. God Bless our troops in the Afghan theater.
“God Bless these brave Marines...I love and admire them.”
Me too. And our leaders are keeping them there until the crazy Muslims decide to quit acting like crazy Muslims and have a nice Jeffersonian democracy with no bad guys, like back in the USA. And we’ll be friends forever, etc....In reality we are supporting a corrupt leader of a corrupt administration hated by most of his fellow countrymen, who says his country (i.e., himself) will need the support of the USA for the next fifteen to twenty years.
I say, dream on. Let’s bring our troops home now and next time we send our military into an Arab nation, we remember the wisdom of Bush1 and come in with overwhelming force, inflict massive damage and leave. Leave the nation rebuilding to them.
In Afghanistan, Marines live a tough camp life
From what I’ve observed...this is the desired condition of a Marine
in the field.
G-d bless ‘em!!!
this little GIRL should go to the VFW and ask some Vietnam Vets how conditions were In Country. Humpin a ruck through through the jungle for 30 days as a LRRP during Monsoon season. Always wet - you and your 'food', Jungle Rot eating at your legs and everything else, Bugs the size of birds and Rats as big as small dogs. #@$% .. &%#@ moron journalists!
These Marines, like others before them, will “improvise,
adapt, and overcome”.
It won’t be long til some jarhead figures out how to
make hot water and starts doing laundry, and offering
hot showers for a price.
Seen it before...
And that’s why I admire and respect them so much. Like I said before, I wouldn’t last more than a day under those conditions.
Our Marines = exceptional people. Love ‘em.