From Jim Gilliam's blog archives
Bush on Meet the Press this Sunday!

February 4, 2004 4:38 PM

Bush will make his first appearance on a Sunday morning talk show this Sunday on Meet the Press. Tim Russert will interview the President for an hour in the Oval Office.

Bush '04 just entered phase 1.

More from the archive in Bush, Television.

Bush on Meet the Press this Sunday! (02.04.2004)

Next Entry: The high cost of governing "for the people" (02.04.2004)
Previous Entry: Why is it so hard to count a vote? (02.04.2004)

Read the 1 comments.

Lt. Col. Dominic Caraccilo:

I have been serving in Iraq for over five months now as a soldier in the 2

nd Battalion of the 503rd Airborne Infantry Regiment, otherwise known as the "


We entered the country at midnight on the 26th of March; one thousand of my

fellow soldiers and I parachuted from 10 jumbo jets (known as C-17s) onto a

cold, muddy field in Bashur, Northern Iraq. This parachute operation was the U

.S. Army's only combat jump of the war and opened up the northern front.

Things have changed tremendously for our battalion since those first cold,

wet weeks spent in the mountain city of Bashur. On April 10 our battalion

conducted an attack south into the oil-rich town of Kirkuk, the city that has

since become our home away from home and the focus of our security and

development efforts.

Kirkuk is a hot and dusty city of just over a million people. The majority

of the city has welcomed our presence with open arms. After nearly five months

here, the people still come running from their homes, in the 110-degree heat,

waving to us as our troops drive by on daily patrols of the city. Children

smile and run up to shake hands, in their broken English shouting "Thank you,


The people of Kirkuk are all trying to find their way in this new

democratic environment. Some major steps have been made in these last three

months. A big reason for our steady progress is that our soldiers are living

among the people of the city and getting to know their neighbors and the needs

of their neighborhoods.

We also have been instrumental in building a new police force. Kirkuk now

has 1,700 police officers. The police are now, ethnically, a fair

representation of the community as a whole. So far, we have spent more than $

500,000 from the former Iraqi regime to repair each of the stations'

electricity and plumbing, to paint each station and make it a functional place

for the police to work.

The battalion also has assisted in re-establishing Kirkuk's fire

department, which is now even more effective than before the war. New water

treatment and sewage plants are being constructed and the distribution of oil

and gas are steadily improving.

All of these functions were started by our soldiers here in this northern

city and are now slowly being turned over to the newly elected city government.

Laws are being rewritten to reflect democratic principles and a functioning

judicial system was recently established to bridge the gap between law

enforcement and the rule of law.

The quality of life and security for the citizens has been largely restored

and we are a large part of why that has happened.

The fruits of all our soldiers' efforts are clearly visible in the streets

of Kirkuk today. There is very little trash in the streets, there are many more

people in the markets and shops and children have returned to school.

This is all evidence that the work we are doing as a battalion and as

American soldiers is bettering the lives of Kirkuk's citizens. I am proud of

the work we are doing here in Iraq and I hope all of your readers are as well.

Lt. Col. Dominic Caraccilo

"Die dulci fruimini!"

Sat Jul 10 2004 10:20 PM

Jim Gilliam
Jim Gilliam


Add to My Yahoo!

Last week's soundtrack:

jgilliam's Weekly Artists Chart