Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Marines Can’t Find Me

It has been exactly 9 days since I started asking the United States Army to transfer me to Ramadi and 2 days since I actually got in touch with the Marines there. After initial contact, the Marines immediately responded with an email asking for some information; one of which was a bit concerning and could be the reason why I'm still here.

The Marine Officer, a 1st Lieutenant, asked me where Camp Liberty is. I had a number of responses in my head, none of which would have been appropriate. I did not want to burn any bridges, but at the same time wanted to make a point. I wrote something like the following as my answer to his question “….since I do not have any clearance to be shown classified information, I have never been pointed to the base on a map. However, I know it is next to Baghdad Airport …. I can see the planes land….and it’s huge.”

It is very disappointing to hear a Marine Officer in charge of Public Affairs asking such questions. It’s not like he's one these weekend warriors National Army Guards who are truck drivers, teachers, and cops back home. He is a Marine and the Marines are always Marines. Even if he is a Reservist, that’s no excuse for a Marine! It’s like me asking photography questions to them.

I feel that I am playing with my luck, letting them to see if he can find the base and then, find a way to get me out there. As soon as I land in Ramadi, I have to start my request for the next location. I feel totally incarcerated being embedded.

Ramin Talaie – Camp Victory (shush…don’t tell the Marines) – Baghdad Iraq

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