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Patrolling Iraq

Most everyone has witnessed the major events of the conflict in Iraq through the eyes of CNN and other major news networks. We watched as Saddam was captured, his sons killed, and his regime toppled. We’ve seen the countless reports of roadside explosions, suicide bombers, and hostage executions. But what you seldom find on the major networks are the stories of individuals. Far removed from the strategic events reported on the news are the individual soldiers on the ground at the tactical level. Their daily lives consist of ‘patrolling,’ which is the primary method the military employs to seek out everything from intelligence to the enemy. Patrols are probably the most demanding and frightening things that soldiers have to do. With the successful completion of each patrol come the joy of survival and the fear of tomorrow.

Matthew Vea provides us with a first-hand look at the daily patrols conducted by the U.S. Army. With his camera, he paints a vivid picture of how the seemingly serene environments that soldiers patrol are often the future scenes of the horror and tragedy presented by the major news networks. Hopefully, this article will leave you with a better understanding of the difficult routines that soldiers face on a daily basis.

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