Saturday, February 17, 2007

BREAKING NEWS: Bravo Company 2/136 moving to TQ

Captain Chip Rankin briefs Bravo Company 2/136 soldiers on their impending move from Falluja to TQ.

FALLUJAH, ANBAR, IRAQ - Bravo Company 2nd Battalion 136th Infantry, 34th Brigade Combat Team, Minnesota National Guard, currently based in Fallujah, Iraq, just received the official news that it will be moving from Fallujah to "TQ". TQ is the base where to rest of the 2nd Battalion 136th Infantry is stationed.

Bravo Company has been in limbo for the past month since the surge was announced, and the entire 34th Brigade Combat Team's tour in Iraq was extended by four months. Before the surge was announced, a Marine Corps infantry battalion was scheduled to replace Bravo Company in Fallujah , and they began to arrive this week in accordance with the pre-surge planning.

With the arrival of Bravo Company's Marine Corps replacements this week there has been a debate as to how best to use Bravo Company. The Marines were expecting to take over Bravo Company's present offices, housing, motor pool, and equipment including things like crew served weapons and radios.

With two units contending for the same scarce resources, the decision was made to return Bravo Company to Army control, and let the Marines take full responsibility for the security of Camp Fallujah, which is primarily a Marine Corps base.

The mood of Bravo Company soldiers was generally positive at today's announcement. TQ has better amenities, like phone service, and recreational facilities. And the rumor mill claims that the chow hall there is better.

There has been no official announcement as to Bravo Company's mission at TQ, but the general expectation is that it will be considerably safer, not involving the sorts of offensive combat operations that the company has been engaged in around Camp Fallujah for the past 6 months.

Note: There is a photo gallery of this briefing here:

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Day by Day, by Chris Muir (updated daily)

Chris Muir is the cartoonist that I met in Kuwait. He spent two weeks in Iraq at the same time I was there in February 2007, and so thought it would relevant to showcase his work on my site. Here is a link to Chris' humorous travelogue of this Iraq trip: