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What to bring to Iraq

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by DRMMR02, Oct 5, 2006.

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  1. DRMMR02

    DRMMR02 member

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    Mods, this isn't exactly just gun related, so if it's OT, I'm sorry.

    I have heard a lot about soldiers in Iraq bringing some of their own stuff over, like knives, packs, etc. So am I am asking what kinds of stuff do any Iraq vets think are good for someone who will be going to the sandbox to get. I'm sworn in and awaiting shipment to Fort Leonard Wood for BCT and AIT (MPs). I am in the Michigan Army National Guard, and I have decided that I am going to volunteer to go to Iraq as soon as I can for at least one tour. I'm not looking to spend all sorts of money on tacticool stuff, I'm just wondering if there is anything the guys who have been there would recommend.
     
  2. evan price

    evan price Member

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    Pork and beer. Lots of pork and beer.
     
  3. nearthebeach

    nearthebeach Member

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    Iraq

    Here's a man fixin' to go off to the war zone asking a serious question ........ sure hope High Road members have some serious information for him.
     
  4. Connecticut Yankee

    Connecticut Yankee Member

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    Some Thoughts and URLs

    I have never been in the service so the best help I can give you is to send you to links where they say what the troops over there already want. The one best link I could find on a google search is: http://anysoldier.com/WhatToSend.cfm. Another site which I can't find any listing in but may have it somewhere is www.soldiersangels.org.

    This is a link that links to a variety of sites telling people what to send to the troops already there: http://www.clubmom.com/jforum/posts...ssionid=411E036AAA7D2644B28D55B53E80F84D.app9.

    The only other help I can give you is to tell you that the one thing I have always read is that many pairs of clean socks are always desirable. Good luck and Godspeed!
     
  5. Stainless Chili

    Stainless Chili Member

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    Aside from your CO telling you that they give you everything you will need, I've heard guys talking about good stuff to bring, on this site: http://www.tacticalforums.com/

    It's guys, divided by service, talking about their experiences within the military.
     
  6. carlrodd

    carlrodd Member

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    in all seriousness, take a laptop, and lots of games. and maybe an electric toothbrush. those were my two luxury items, and they made life sweet. of course, these days joes are living in high speed condo-connex shelters with normal electricity and running water and all, so you should be fine. as far as all the bits and bobs are concerned, i was issued so much crap before we went, and while we were there, i had to dump most of it before we redeployed. maybe try to smuggle in a nice boot knife. everything else you'll be given, or can get at some monster PX.
     
  7. ClonaKilty

    ClonaKilty Member

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  8. Josh Aston

    Josh Aston Member

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    Good socks. I recommend Thorlos. Expensive but worth every penny. I've got a pair that I bought in Tech School seven years ago and they're still good to go. A good holster if your unit doesn't already issue good ones. I like the BlackHawk Serpa, the Safariland 6003(?) is good also. A good sling. Some people like the three points, me personally can't stand em. This one is my favorite. Whatever holster you get (or get issued) get the MOLLE attachment for it. A decent shoulder holster for when you're off duty is nice to have also. Some of the sand resistant mags for the Beretta also. Some kind of entertainment too, laptop, gameboy, books, whatever. Even if you don't get any downtime while you're there, the flight over is 30+ hours. The Photon microlights are great for night time, when you're trying to get to the bathroom but everyone else is asleep. If you don't get issued a decent flashlight, then get one. I like Digilight, at least as good as surefire, but cheaper. And something to mark your bags with. Something distinctive. I used pieces of bright orange felt. There's nothing more annoying than spending 30+ hours on a plane/in an airport, trying to get to your tent or room, and not being able to find your bags among a sea of identical bags.
     
  9. Joe Demko

    Joe Demko Member

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    Disregard anyone who tells you to bring a personal firearm.
     
  10. Kharn

    Kharn Member

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    Baby wipes.

    Kharn
     
  11. tanksoldier

    tanksoldier Member

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    As far as gear goes, the issue stuff now is pretty good.

    After you've been in a while and are familiar with the issue gear and have some field time under your belt you'll have an idea how you like to set things up and what works for you. Until then I'd stick with what they give you. Also, after you're over there you can order online from Ranger Joe's or Blackhawk if you decide you need something. Also, friends and family can and should send you care packages with pogy-bait and such... they can stick in items that you ask for, like new underwear and socks.

    One thing that did work well for me was kevlar-lined leather gloves like the cops use for patting down Hadji at traffic-control points and such. Some guys used mechanic's gloves, they seemed to work well also.

    As for luxury stuff, you really don't know what your situation will be until you get over there. On my last deployment we lived in tents, seahut hooches and ammo bunkers at one time or another. Usually a platoon will go in together on a Playstation or Xbox and a TV, DVD player, etc. Best to wait and find out how/ where you'll be living then have someone ship you your personal electronics... just bring a discman or someting to tide you over. I went thru ALOT of books... I read anything I could get my hands on. My LT had someone sending him episodes of "Sex and the City". You can laugh but by the time he got his third batch the whole platoon was watching... go figure.

    Don't buy anything too expensive... you should assume anything you take over will be stolen, lost or destroyed and won't be coming home with you. My platoon's Xbox was THRASHED by the end of the deployment... we left it for the next unit, with written instruction how to stack the peanutbutter and soup tins on the hard drive so it would make the proper connections and work... sort of.
     
  12. NailGun

    NailGun Member

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    +1 on the baby wipes.
     
  13. El Tejon

    El Tejon Member

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    And, you will tell us if you need anything, right?
     
  14. AirForceShooter

    AirForceShooter Member

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    Baby wipes and Oakley Sun Glasses.

    AFS
     
  15. Manedwolf

    Manedwolf member

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    And a large sealed plastic bag to keep it in if you have it with you in an unsealed vehicle during a sandstorm, I'd heard. For iPods and such, those Otterbox things made for them are pretty durable against the elements. There's also pocketsize foldout solar chargers for things like your iPod...no shortage of sun!
     
  16. MatthewVanitas

    MatthewVanitas Member

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    Most useful item from home: good quality flashlight.

    I used to like Inovas, but I've killed 3 or 4 of them on deployments. If I ever activate and deploy again, I'm taking my ARC mini-flashlight. I'd recommend getting a very small, good quality light, just for immediate ground lum when walking to the head at night, etc. We had a kid get Med-Evac'ed all the way back to Germany because he stepped on some cut sheet metal the roofers left lying around.


    Odds are you'll be going to a good-sized, semi-civilized base with Internet, showers, chow-hall, etc. So a lot of the 2003-era advice is a little out of date. However, unless they're lighting bases up like Christmas these days (who knows, they might), a small flashlight in your cammie pocket is good to have.

    -MV
     
  17. hso

    hso Moderator Staff Member

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    Ask JShirley. He's currently in Afganastan.
     
  18. CAS700850

    CAS700850 Member

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    Get yourself a good quality folding knife. they'll never make you leave it behind, unless your CO is a strickly by the book type. Get a multi-tool or swiss army knife, as the tools will be very useful. Some good quality sunglasses, preferably ones with some degree of eye protection. you may also want to consider a pair od clear lense shooting glasses, as you'll end up working after dark sometime, and eye protection could prove itself invaluable.

    Bets of luck. Keep your head down, your eyes up, and pay attention to the guys who have been there a while. Stay away from anything that looks out of place, unusual, or just about anything that might be an IED. Trust your instincts. Keep your weapons clean.
     
  19. illini52

    illini52 Member

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    Bring a sense of humor.

    Good luck and thanks for your service.
     
  20. CobraF100

    CobraF100 Member

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    You can call Oakley and talk with them,tell them you are Military and need to talk to the "Military order side" of Oakley,they'll give you a discount and fast shipping,at least thats how it worked for me when I called to place a order for my Wife when she was getting ready to go over to Iraq. When we found this out I think it was 16 Soldiers that got in on our order.
    I also got her some Oakley Goggles with the "Tear away covers" these will protect the Goggle Lenses from getting "Sand Blasted"

    These are the MX XS O FRAME® that I got her with the Lenses shown but got her the Gold Iridium Lenses because these keep everything "Bright",I use this color everyday and for shooting,Good in low light:
    [​IMG]
    The ESS brand they give you is good but my wife and everyone I know liked the Oakley Goggles better because they were alot Clear'er and these do not block out as much of your "Peripheral Vision" that you will need.

    Your sunglass Lenses are going to get scratched up so if you get the Oakley's then who ever your going to have order them for you you need to give them the type of Lenses you like so they get the order right for you...If your in a Good Camp over there then you'll be able to get online and order them yourself

    Looks like I'll be placing another order very soon as she is being told there going to Afganastan in 3-4 months.

    Hadji's do alot of the mail:
    If someone ship's Movies/DVD's,games ...ect. DO NOT put on the Customs form or write on the box that thats whats in side,just write "School Books...ect".
    Just over the year my Wife was overthere 7 Packages did not get to her and I was writing DVD's...ect on the Customs forms and box...then I was told to write School Books and she got every package after that.

    On a side note for Women going over,they had problems with there Underwear coming up missing all the time when they turned there cloths in to be washed,the Hadji's are the one's doing the washing and some were cought taking the underwear so I was having to send this over to her about every month....This is not posted as a Joke..

    Thanks for your service.
     
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2006
  21. orangelo

    orangelo member

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    I've seen these items on many want lists:

    Beef jerky
    Hot sauce
    Sanitizing hand wipes
    Any and all entertainment you can afford(video games, ipod, CDs, DVDs, magazines, etc...)
    Favorite hygene products
     
  22. MD_Willington

    MD_Willington Member

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    I sent baby wipes, ziplock bags (the good ones) and black latex rubber bands... The guys/gals wrote back stating that they appreciated all of those things, the females especially liked the black latex rubber bands... I forget why they asked for the rubber bands but they liked them :confused:

    We also sent a big box of candies, puzzle books, nerf footballs and all kinds of stuff for bored folks to an acquaintance at LSA Anaconda... also sent my flag from my house... They signed the hem/mount (not the flag itself) and sent the flag back to me in the USA, I flew it and have since replaced it.

    Some people have stated that a SOG paratool in black is a great piece of gear to take if you're not issued one.
     
  23. MatthewVanitas

    MatthewVanitas Member

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    I'd hold off on the goggles until you find out what you're getting issued. We got free Wiley-X goggles with interchangeable night/day lenses each time we deployed. Got to keep them too. I'd still be using mine for shooting today, but they were stolen by a Bedouin shepherd.

    I stand by flashlight: I've seen great .gov-issue goggles and multi-tools (for wiremen and the like), but I've never been issued a good LED flashlight.

    The only flashlight they've given me is those huge L-shaped monstrosities that provide dying-firefly candlepower for 15 minutes with two D-cells.

    Oh, and if you write gun manufacturers a short email, they'll mail you a box of catalogs to distribute. Must've left 100 Bushmaster catalogs sitting in the R&R hooch; all disappeared in 20 minutes.

    -MV
     
  24. Manedwolf

    Manedwolf member

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    They still issue those thirty-years-ago outdated clunkers? :confused: Even MagLites have been around for decades!

    If that's the case, there's LED upgrades to replace that sort of bulb. Can at least get a few hundred hours out of the batteries.
     
  25. peyton

    peyton Member

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    I found a good fixed blade knife for mounting on your outer protective vest. The local kids know you won't shoot them for trying to steal stuff from your vehicle but they are terrified that you'll cut them. Plus, being mounted on your OTV will make it easier to open those MRE's we all love!!!!

    Peyton
    2 1/2 years of fun in the sandbox and been all over!!!!
     
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