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 ...
Wonder how much Halliburten was paid to build this camp?
God Bless these brave Marines. I don’t think I’d last one day under those conditions.
I love and admire them.
“The young Marines at this outpost could be on a camping trip to Hell.”
The question here is FOR WHAT??? Somebody give me a reason.
What, no reducing fittings... probably because they would freeze solid. Keeping the 3" hose going is the only way the water supply can be maintained, I'd think.
To be ready to be called into action in various places? I must be missing something obvious.
Here. Try this. The article is about the conditions they are enduring in Afghanistan, not their basic training. The link is about what is going on with these guys AFTER they get there. So again, the question is WHY???
Thanks for posting this. There is a great video report at the McClatchy site with photos of the camp.
Oh, you mean that their presence is in vain because their hands are so tied now.
I thought maybe you were wondering why the base camps were not more habitable. Something has to keep Marines tough, I would suppose. The Air Force is positively spoiled in comparison.
Sadly, to perpetuate the notion that we’re fighting a war.
The Taliban and islam is fighting a war. We are respecting their “religious sensitivities.”
My daughter just returned to Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan. She has it pretty comfy compared to these Marines. She has her own tiny hooch with a Spartan latrine. She asked me to send her some Clorox tablets because the toilet is pretty primitive. I spent a few days at a Special Forces Camp near the Cambodian border back in the day, and it only confirmed my desire to spend the rest of my days in comfort and ease. Went on to spend time in Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia and a lot of places in Africa. But I never lived for any prolonged time in bad circumstances that these young warriors in the video are doing. Bravo Zulu, lads.
Yup, the USAF has it made in the shade - except for the ETAC/TACPs assigned to provide CAS support.
Then they live in the same $hithole as the Corps. Eat the same food - but maybe not pulling late night guard rotation...
At least it’s not a two mile hike to the watering point, so always look for the bright side.
See more at www.romad.com, worth the visit.
Their fruity CINC would never be able to endure a minute of the conditions many are experiencing in Afghanistan.
The first sighting of a mouse would send him screaming like a girl and jumping onto Michelle’s lap.
Speaking of mice, here’s how those same Marines celebrated Thanksgiving.
Those men are called "soldiers."
Them Jarheads is TOUGH! They can handle it, and much, much worse.
That’s Club Med compared to the Frozen Chosin in Korea.
IF they had a REASON. There is none.
Edward A. Fairman on Anysoldier.com is from Golf Company if anyone wants to send a package.
One of the soldiers from their unit recently died
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.
I know a little about the Marines. I could care less how how to spell HALLIBURTEN. I believe its spelled money, money, money for them and their friends.
You can blame it on the Marines, but I don't believe you.
You sound like another guy in on the pay offs. There is nothing you can tell me about the Marines that I don't know.
I've been there and done that.That is when you tell the truth.
Go ahead and shoot your mouth off, we Marines will over look that kind of stuff. We just consider the source.
What is interesting is that McClatchy news was one of the worst at slandering our troops under GWB. I wonder if someone turned a brain cell on? Why the 180?
Nice video at the link. Take a look, you never know when you might see someone you love.
Why? because they are MARINES!!!
Yeah, but what he isn't saying is that we only got steak on Friday nights and we only had lobster OR crab legs on Friday nights, but never both on the same Friday night. And the steaks were all well done. I'll tell you who ate good...the Europeans. Their chow hall at the Kabul International Airport compound had real plates and metal flatware and the food was fabulous.
“McClatchy news was one of the worst at slandering our troops under GWB. I wonder if someone turned a brain cell on?” ************* No agenda with McClatchy: McClatchy report by Jonathan Landay: Report: Rules of engagement led to soldiers deaths. A detailed follow up:
The lack of timely air support - was a consequence of the manpower and equipment shortages bequeathed by the Bush administrations failure to secure Afghanistan against a resurgence of the Taliban, al-Qaida and allied groups before turning to invade Iraq.
The denial of heavy artillery fire to those trapped in Ganjgal also has roots in the Bush administrations decision to divert resources to Iraq and the resulting stress on the U.S. military.
Deepen, exacerbate existing problems, crises, differences, and if they dont exist, create them and then deepen, exacerbate them...and profit [politically, ideologically and even financially] the most from them in any way you can, and, in the resulting chaos, blame our enemies for the whole thing. Vladimir Ilich Ulianov (Lenin)
The only time they get to those other bases is when they might stop in Dubai or someplace like that.
His first tour in 2002 he was in Kabul to open up the Embassy, but that was no piece of cake back then.
NOT why is the Camp tough. I understand that, believe me. What I DON’T understand is why they are there if they are not allowed to BE Marines and do what MARINES are supposed to do! Furthermore, THEY are more than slightly ticked about it too. You don’t send MARINES and then tell them they can’t engage the enemy.
They are sitting ducks for political correctness. It sucks. It really does.
Thanks for the ping. I cannot view the video. It requires FP that will not work correctly on my old system. But I can conjure up what some of our military are faced with at both extremes. Super hot desert and cold mountainous environments. As well as the personal living conditions many have to endure.
are you angry because they are living rough or are you angry because they are being held back by the ROE?