Schwarzenegger Visit

Fellow Rotarians,

The past two weeks have gone by in a whirlwind. We are preparing a plan to completely change the focus of and re-engage the Police Transition Teams. The objective is to turn the training from being general in nature to a more focused effort in improving their weaknesses prior to the Responsible Drawdown of Forces. In order to change this mission focus, several briefings had to be made to the MNC-I Commanding General and each of those takes and inordinate amount of time to prepare. The staff has been working very hard, for long durations to accomplish this task.

Now that the concept has been approved, further work is required to create the implementation plan and put it into an execution phase. This work is tedious, but we are hopeful it will enhance the Iraqi Police Service, bring wrongdoers to justice and improve the security of this emerging nation. It is a major undertaking for this Brigade that will hopefully pay big dividends for the Iraqi people.

 

The heavy rains have begun and this is a great thing for the Iraqi people as they need water worse than Los Angeles. It is nice that the rain has beat down the incessant dust, but it also brings MUD. Contrary to popular belief, this part of Iraq is not sandy. The dirt here is fine silt clay that turns to a sticky, thick mud that does not absorb water at all. There are large puddles everywhere similar to what we would call Lake Hogan. I am thankful that our compound is very well situated with gravel, which limits the amount of mud we have to trek through.

 

We got a big surprise the other day when Governor Schwarzenegger visited Camp Liberty and had breakfast with the soldiers from California. He has been an inspiration to me and was one of the reasons that I started a life of fitness. It was great to meet him. If you haven t had the opportunity, take it if you can. He is an engaging, humorous (actually downright funny), and a very nice person. Even if you don t agree with his politics, take the opportunity to meet the entertainer.

 

I hope all is well with all of you. Thanks for the continued support.

 

Robert