“The first time I heard Charley Parker I thought heard Be-Bop, like Charlie Parker with Miles Davis, it killed me. It was like: What is this chemical stuff?”
Hearing Voices- Radio Stories
Recently, as part of the US draw-down in Iraq, the US base in Tikrit, “JCC” or Joint Coordination Center, was handed back to the Iraqis. Sergeant First Class George Havel, a soldier with 232 Regiment spent four months in Tikrit, helping to coordinate emergency services. Sargeant Havel gave journalist Jake Warga a tour of Mahmoon Palace, originally built to celebrate Saddam Hussein’s birthdays. US forces had been occupying the palace up until the recent hand-over, living in its marbled halls under golden chandeliers.
The first of our Soldier’s Soundtrack series: Embedded with the 3rd Infantry Division, US Army, Baghdad, the producer plugged into the soldier’s iPods, asking them what they were listening to, why they liked the song, and what their lives were like. To Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody,” Major James Lockridge tells us, “The United States Army can go anywhere at anytime or anyplace. I learned that during the first war. I wouldn’t want to be anybody that had to face the United States.”
Photo © Jake Warga: “Major James Lockridge, after learning of an IED explosion that killed 5, wounded 17, in Tuz, Iraq. We had been up all night looking for bombs. We missed it. I felt it.”
Christmas wishes from soldiers at U.S. Army Contingency Operating Base Speicher, Northern Iraq: Sgt. First Class Siatuu Quarterman, Sgt. First Class Claudia Bullard, Staff Sgt. Brian Allen, Specialist Nico Kane, Staff Sgt. Robert Lacome, and Simon Welte.
More Iraq Christmas ’09.
More Iraq Christmas ’09.
The start of this year’s camel racing season is just starting in the United Arab Eremites. In Australia the season ended a few weeks ago. Every year veteran camel trainer and jockey Glenda Sutton competes, and often wins. Photographer Tim Bonham caught up with her in Queensland, at the Boulia Camel Races.
Tim Bonham photos:
While in Iraq, former U.S. Army Sergeant Matthew McCue witnessed the power and peace-making potential of agriculture. When he returned to the States he worked with the Farmer-Veteran Coalition, and now works at the French Garden Farm near Sebastopol. Says McCue: “I still want to make the world a better place. I think i can do more good with a shovel than with an M-16.” McCue worked with the Farmer-Veteran Coalition and the French Garden Farm in Sebastopol CA, This story was originally produced for the SpeakeasyDC Storycast.