Date Published: 17 June 2004
One of the many 'check-the-block' items we have/had to complete at our mobilization station prior to going to a CRC (and from there to Kuwait and then Iraq) is something called a country brief, given by some military intelligence folks. This, I'm learning the hard way, is a mandatory thing that we cannot ship without. It is also something that, in our case, could not be given any earlier than today, because until today we did not have official orders stating where we were going. Even today our orders don't specify where in Iraq we will be going, something the briefing party has said they need in order to provide an accurate and useful brief of what we will need to know going in. I mention this here because in our case we had thought we were pretty much good to go as of Tuesday, and now we're having to jump through hoops (as are others, such as the individual who will be briefing us on Saturday) in order to make this happen. This briefing should have been scheduled well in advance, even if our destination was not known at the time, and the briefing folks should have been kept informed of our destination when and as we received more information. I know some members of training support battalion in charge of mobilizing IRRs through Ft Leonard Wood are reading this now, and so I hope this feedback will be useful for future IRRs who come through this post.
And we did in fact get our orders this morning, officially, as well as tickets to fly to our CRC. The orders still don't say what unit we will be assigned to in Iraq, though - they just mention a holding battalion in Kuwait, from which I'm sure we'll be transferred shortly after we arrive. It does sound like Chris and I will be traveling together, probably at least as far as Kuwait, though, which is cool.
Steve is an experienced software architect and trainer, focusing on code quality and Domain-Driven Design with .NET.