I woke up in an unknown, mildly foreign place today. The alarm on my phone was set for 0530. The ring tone echoed familiarly in the room. Ah, it's time to get up. It's time to get moving. I think.
I didn’t have a patrol to go to. I didn’t have planning to attend. No time lines were present to abide by. I am in an undiscovered world. I have lost the rigid structure that kept me busy for ten months, and misplaced the drive of our next patrol being ‘at a moment’s notice.’ It scares me greatly.
Welcome home, Tony.
After re-reading the last paragraph it almost seems like this would be an excellent introduction for my journal entry for being on leave. But it’s not for leave. It’s for work. It’s for my new home away from the last four years of my military experience. It’s a new unit, a new face on this war, and a new chance to do something a bit more clandestine. Or is it?
The Scout and Sniper Platoon. Battalion Headquarters.
I was briefed by my new platoon sergeant the night prior on how things worked. We were supposed to be the best, finest soldiers this battalion has to offer in this war. That’s a lot to live up to when the primary function of the platoon is combat patrols, for the battalion commander.
I have left my previous job to secure something better for my military career. Call it a selfish move – call it what you will, but the winds of change have enabled me to move on to something I feel carries more responsibility. I think it offers even more in the way to excel as a soldier.
My soldiers in the company I was in previously will be taken care of well. The platoon sergeant there is a great man, and I could even say he was a father figure in my life. This is the way of the Army. Moving has been something I was always afraid to do, but there’s no better time than now.
Looking on to the future I can say that my presence here may not be as noticeable as when I was in a line platoon, but I will have more chances to see the improvements to Iraq at a public relations level. The Iraqis we meet are the future leaders of this country, and I happen to be a good judge of character. The content of this journal may have shifted slightly because of this, but that’s not what it’s about.
It’s about making it to tomorrow. I’ll see you there.
The views expressed within this journal are my own, and in no way represent the views or policies of the United States Army, Department of Defense, or any other official agency.