I spent some time this afternoon with a Marine from the Sunni triangle who took an AK-47 round to his side. He was very lucky--the bullet entered and exited his side without hitting any vital organs. He is 19 years old, and ready to get out there and rejoin his unit. He said that he felt bad that they were out there doing missions, while he was "just here relaxing." Those who worry about the nation’s youth should spend a little time around these soldiers. In what I’m sure has begun to sound like empty promises, you will learn more about this soldier in a forthcoming article.
After chatting with the soldier, I took advantage of the opportunity of being at the Army Hospital to have a blood test. You see, I don’t know my blood type. When I embedded with the 1AD unit the other day, blood type was one of the questions they asked. And when you consider that a reporter traveling with that unit in November lost his hand to a grenade, I suppose it is a reasonable question as well. The officer handling my paperwork looked at me as if I was crazy when I told him I didn’t know. I explained that I am a dumb civilian. Because I presume this reasonable question will be asked at later embeds, I decided to remedy my ignorance. At any rate, I should have that information by tomorrow.
Also tomorrow, I will be attending a ceremony marking the turning over of the Ministry of Health from Coalition authority to Iraqi control. This is the first ministry to revert to Iraqi control. I’ll give you an update after the event.