Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Iraqi Oil Platforms

Last month I returned to the Iraq oil platforms to guide my friend, Rear Admiral Kevin Quinn, through the XNAG or extreme North Arabian Gulf. The oil platforms are inside Iraq territorial waters and are within eye and ear shot of the cowboy Irainian Republican Guard Navy forces. These are the guys that grabed the UK 15 on March 23rd. This visit enabled Kevin and I to spend time with the current Commander in the area, Commodore Nick Lambertand and get his perspective on the challanges in his area of responsibility (AOR.)

Kevin is currently CTF 50 leading Fifth Fleet's Carrier Strike Force. I am his Expeditionary Counterpart commanding CTF 51.

It's hot as hell

My question is: at what point is it so hot that the temperature increase can't be felt. I asked my driver that question this morning. He's been here in Bahrain for over a year. He said he wasn't sure what that temperature is, but he is sure we haven't reached it yet.

Today we are at 40 degrees centigrade. Centigrade is a system of measure use throughout the world except in the U.S. I convert to Fahrenheit by doubling centigrade and adding thirty. Not accurate enough for lab work but good enough for me. This formula makes 40 C feel like 110 F or pretty darn hot. In the afternoon we will approach 46 C.

It's hot as hell, but few of us complain here at the headquarters in Bahrain because we know our young heroes are walking the beat in Iraq with body armor on and sleeves rolled down. It's hot as hell. God bless our young men and women in uniform. Unlike the teens cooling off in the mall this weekend, our Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, and Marines, walk the beat, barely complain, and make a difference every single day.

It's hot as hell. We all miss our families.