Category Archives: Christmas in the war zone

What the troops in Afghanistan got for Xmas..

Turkey patties and grape juice, according to this McClatchy writeup.But they also got to call home, which in some cases would make folks sadder instead of happier. I know because after I got off the phone yesterday with my son in OK, I cried my tired ole ass off. But I digress, back to the troops in Afghanistan, from the writeup:

Marines are used to being away from home on Christmas. About 40 percent of those stationed here have been to Iraq or Afghanistan before or have missed the holiday due to training.

The Marines, the 3rd Battalion 8th Marine Regiment based out of Camp Lejeune, N.C., are stationed in Farah province, one of Afghanistan’s most difficult regions, an area where Taliban forces not only fight but also sell opium poppy to finance their operations.

In the days leading up to Christmas, some Marines put up small Christmas trees or lined their cold tents with holiday lights. Others spent their evenings watching Christmas movies on their laptops. Some stared at care packages, waiting until Thursday to open them.

In the chow tent, someone lined the electrical cords powering the fluorescent lights with candy canes. During Christmas breakfast, the New York Giants were playing the Carolina Panthers on one of the few televisions on base. One by one, troops walked in and wished the others a Merry Christmas. One quipped: “Honestly, it was nice to not go Christmas shopping this year.”

This makes me angry, very angry. These soldiers deserve the best we have, not fucking Turkey patties for Christ’s sake. Take this soldier’s story as an example:

Lance Cpl Matt Keefe, 21, of Chesterfield, Mass., said this was his third straight Christmas away from home. The first time he was in training, the second he was deployed in Africa and this year he is nearly two months into his rotation in Afghanistan.

“I can’t wait to have an actual Christmas,” Keefe said.

I feel bad now, whining about my son in OK, at least he is safe and not dodging Taliban bombs and bullets. For that I am thankful.

If Obama has his way, there will still be American soldiers in Afghanistan next Christmas.