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A Letter to the Legion from the Front
Letter to the Legion from the Front
Dear Post 45,
I caught wind of and read the recent news articles being circulated back there
in the states. I figured I could clarify some things for you. As usual the news
media has blown some things way out of proportion. The countryside is getting
safer by the day despite all the attacks you are hearing about. Imagine every
shooting incident or robbery committed in L.A. or Portland being blown way out
This is a country where most of the Saddam Hussein thugs are being chased
around like scared rabbits by Coalition forces. It is literally open season on
them! We hunt them down like animals. There were about a million soldiers in
the Iraqi army at the beginning of hostilities and most of them took off before
we attacked. There are some that were very loyal to Saddam that are trying to
sneak around and take pot shots at us. We are cleaning them up pretty fast.
There are also thugs from other countries running around, like Iran and Syria.
Well, the Iraqis hate these thugs as much as we do. So the Iraqi people are
hunting them down too! I can honestly say 98% of the population of Iraq love us
and they do not want us to leave...ever! They say as long as we are here they
What is going on with the countries infrastructure? Everything is going well!
The railroad is running again! The railroad has not run since 1991. In the city
of Hillah, the power stays on 24 hours a day and it has more power than prior
to the war. Some Iraqis are worried about getting too much food from the
coalition because they don't have enough room in their homes to store it. The
markets are open. The Seabees have rebuilt all of the schools and put in
furniture and chalkboards. The kids used to sit on the floor! Now they have
nice desks to sit at. Commerce is running. New money is being printed. The
Iraqi Dinar has stabilized and is now increasing in value.
Most of the Iraqi men want to buy Chevy pickups (I told them a Dodge Ram with a
Cummins Diesel is better Ha Ha). They pretty much want any vehicle made by
General Motors. The highways and bridges are being repaired. In the
Universities, the girls have tossed their deshakas (long black dresses with
head and face coverings) and are now wearing western style clothes and even
some are wearing short sleeves. The favorite drink is Pepsi, followed by Coke.
They want us to bring them any and everything American. Any item made in
America or that is from America is worth money over here.
The newspapers and television paint a picture of doom and gloom and that we are
having major problems over here. That is just not the case. The Iraqis have a
saying about the situation over here "Every day is better than the day before".
Life is flowing back in to this country and it is fun to watch and I am so glad
I got to watch it happen. Some days watching the Iraqi people is like watching
the faces of little kids on Christmas Day. Many of them are walking around in a
daze wondering what to do with their freedom.
They are starting businesses everywhere. They want to build shopping malls and
factories, they want McDonalds and Jack in the Box and Pizza Hut. Of course
anything American Fast Food, because of the stories the troops are telling
them. We give them our old newspapers and magazines that you've been sending us
and they are absolutely flabbergasted when they read them! They want us to keep
bringing them. They read every single page even the advertisements over and
over! This would be a good time for media to get their magazines going over
here because the Iraqis just love them.
So in short you see I will give you the straight scoop and keep you informed of
what is up over here. I will sign off for now and send this along. Thanks again
to all of you for your support. My mailing address has changed. The older one
is no longer working. I will tell you the new one as soon as we get it.
Senior Chief Art Messer
22 Naval Construction Regiment (Forward) Task Force Charlie
U. S. Navy Seabees
"With Compassion For Others, We Build, We Fight, For Peace With Freedom"