Shoshone News-Press from Kellogg, Idaho (2024)

3 4': A A 5 1 CU A12 THE PRESS HAGADONE NEWSPAPER NETWORK Sunday, August 21, 2005 I 1 Iraq 4 14 Report from the Front The voices of journalists embedded with American troops in Iraq They live with soldiers, eat with soldiers, sleep with soldiers and get shot at with soldiers. Their dispatches carry the sights and sounds of war in Iraq. And sometimes the sheer, senseless, random violence of it all. These are some of the latest stories filed by journalists embedded with American troops on the battlefronts of Iraq, where more than 40 U.S. service members have been killed this month.

MAIL CALL: SWIMMING POOL IS HERE By MONI BASU A CAMP STRIKER, Iraq, Like every other soldier here, Spc. Steve Listwan, a high school history teacher from Addison, asked his family to send him creature comforts from home. "I told (my dad) we're desperate; that we needed some recreation," Listwan said. His father went to a garage sale to pick up a few things and when Listwan opened his package from home a few days ago, out came a $2 swimming pool. Yes, an inflatable swimming pool that comfortably holds four.

Listwan said his wife threw in a few smoothie mixes to complete the party. 'Listwan a member of the 133rd Signal Battalion from: Chicago, which is attached to the 48th Brigade Combat Team tried filling up his new pool with 5-gallon jugs but that took almost two hours. "It was more work than it was worth," he said. So Listwan and his friend, Cpl. Michael Lanham, a paramedic from Chicago, talked the driver of a water tanker into coming by to fill up their new pool.

And, voila. Pool party on a balmy Baghdad afternoon. Temperatures holding at 125 degrees. "Its like bath water," said Spc. Tricia Frankewich, a homemaker from Macon, who works in the brigades Headquarters Company.

"Were working our butts off here," Frankewich said. "We deserve a little relaxation." There is a swimming pool available for soldiers who are staying at bases around Baghdad International Airport, but its at Camp Liberty, which can sometimes take up to 90 minutes to reach by shuttle bus. Listwan said he understood the concept of a 24-hour soldier. "I'd be up in a minute and in uniform if they needed me," he said. But for now, he was ready to soak up a few rays.

Sunbathing in Baghdad? This is a place where not even SPF 70 can save you. "I can take care of that," Lanham piped in. "I'm a medic." To which Listwan responded, his skin rivaling the color of his red hair, "Next, we'll need a lifeguard." Moni Basu is a reporter with The Atlanta JournalConstitution, embedded with the Georgia Army National Guard's 48th Brigade Combat Team. 14 JUNGLE LAW By MICHAEL YON D. MOSUL, Iraq- Every day, the Deuce Four launches dozens of combat missions.

Recently, a patrol was heading downtown, and its tasks included meeting with Iraqi police. I asked to go along. The battalion commander led the patrol, which also included two Strykers (combat vehicles) led by Lt. Sean Keneally from Charlie Company. As the ramp on our Stryker began to close, I inserted earplugs, pulled a fire-retardant hood over my head, put on my helmet and buckled the chin strap, then pulled the ballistic goggles over my eyes.

Flash burns from bombs are deadly. I've seen it many times: anything exposed is fried in an instant. Skin and flesh just peel off. The super hot flashes also melt contact lenses to eyeballs before people can blink. Years ago, when I was a jumpmaster, I remember sticking my face outside the aircraft to check the surroundings, and my eyelids slapped and flopped in the torrent.

That was only about hurricane-force winds. The blast in an explosion opens the eyelids, fusing the melted contacts to the eyeballs. Smart soldiers don't wear contacts in combat, but others often do. I'm wearing fire-retardant End of OFF ciearance EVERYTHING STOREWIDE 40,000 SQ. FT.

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Six seconds. A terrorist is preparing to push the button, but the timing's got to be just right not yet. not yet we are almost there. Five seconds. One of the terrorists does James J.

Lee, left, and reporter 21st Infantry Regiment as town of Rawah, Iraq. tending to talk to a taxi driver. One holds a Motorola radio transmitter in his pants pocket. Fourteen seconds. Thirteen seconds.

The bombs are buried under the road ahead of us, on a route to the police station. Twelve seconds. Eleven seconds. We are in a big Stryker. Usually the IEDs just make the ears ring why I wear earplugs or maybe knock an air guard or two unconscious, filling the cabin with so much fine dust that it looks like smoke.

I've often wondered if this dust sometimes ignites when the armor ruptures, adding to the flashover that burns so many, soldiers inside. weans Ten Nine seconds. boog Sometimes IEDs blow through the Stryker, launching it into the air, and critically or fatally injuring the people inside. Odd body parts will often be left unscathed, such as a severed hand in a black glove on the road. About 43.

Americans have died here during the past 10 days. Eight seconds. Associated Army Times photographer soldiers from the 3rd Battalion, the desert from Mosul to the pants and a long-sleeved shirt, over which I wear a fire-retardant jump suit. I take a long drink of cold water, and pull the hood back up over my mouth and nose, then pull the black, fire retardant gloves over my hands. The outside temperature is roughly 110 degrees.

Sitting to my left is Maj. David Brown, the Battalion surgeon. I hope Maj. Brown doesn't get severely injured or killed; we'll definitely need him again. Plus, I like him; he's probably the only soldier who hasn't laughed at all the fire gear I wear.

We both know that the law of averages catches people at the worst times, and survival favors the protected. A couple of minutes later, we leave the base and begin the drive downtown; pass-" ing spots where so many car bombs and IEDs (improvised explosive devices) have exploded. Within a few blocks, we are 15 seconds from rolling over. a bomb buried under the road. Fifteen seconds.

At least two terrorists are watching our approach, pre- HOT SUMMER SAVINGS! Elegant Expressions EXQUISITE GIFTS HOME DECOR 777-8110 Hours: Mon-Sat, Sun, 7200 W. Seltice Way, Stateline Exit 299 Border Matt Cox embedded with they pushed their way across patches on his Online Magazine blog site. CATCHING SHRAPNEL By MATTHEW COX AL BU HARDEN, Iraq I heard the two shots from a soldier's M16 rifle, but I had no idea he was firing at a suicide car-bomber steering straight for us. It was about 4:30 p.m. Aug.

1 and Army Times photographer James Lee and I were standing near the rear ramp of Company commander Capt. Mark Ivezaj's Stryker combat vehicle. REPORT continued on A13 a double take at the lead Stryker, blowing his The call instantly goes out to "Block left! Lock 'em down! Two pax (people)!" When we turn towards them, one man spooks and bolts. He's running so fast that it's freaky to watch. The only other person I've seen run that fast was a track star during practice at the University of Florida in Gainesville.

Now, watching the machine gun track him was like a video game. Except this video had real men, real bullets, and when your team hits a bomb, you really die. Michael Yon is a writer embedded with the Army's Ist Is Battalion, 24th Regiment (The "Deuce who posts dis- 11 3..

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