Thursday, April 19, 2007

Contract Hunter

8 Mar 07
A cold encounter today. We were at the terminal waiting for mail and struck up a conversation with three foreign troops. We talked their national politics, cultural dynamics, et al for a while. Anyway, all three work in K-9/police dog units. One of the guys is a reservist in their country's army but in his civilian life he is a contract hunter in Africa who works for various national governments helping to thin animal populations. Some of our guys are hunters so we talked guns and sport. He had a photo album of some of his hunts that included some 8-10 cape buffalo, 2 hippos, a number of gazelles, and antelope and other smaller animals. As their aircraft taxied up, he asked about us. I told him that we lived and worked with the Iraqis here on Basrah. He started toward the aircraft, looked back, grinned and said, “Right. I bagged a couple of them the last time I was here!” In his final words, our friendly exchange turned cold and ominous.

Dhiaa left today for a week of leave in Baghdad. I’ll pray for his safety.

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