Before I arrived at FOB Bernstein, there was much more terrorists and bandit activity, necessitating more raids and activity at the base. Just before I arrived, it became quiet. This was not bad--indeed as you will see from a longish article I am about to submit about my time there, the respite gave the troops time to do important nation building work. But we nonetheless joked that as soon as I left, things would heat up again. Things actually began to heat up a couple of weeks before I left: Infrequent rocket attacks occurred, and the operations tempo for raids concomitantly increased. But to make true the prophetic joke, I am told that within minutes of my departing, the troops went on a mission where they discovered that one of the local sheikhs (or tribal leaders) had been ambushed and brutally murdered.
I have received many comments and emails of thanks from family members of troopers stationed at FOB Bernstein, and I appreciate your well wishes. For those who have been checking this web site for updates about the troops at Bernstein, I would only advise that you should not stop browsing the site just yet. I have a number of pictures, posts, and a couple of full length articles that I have not yet been able to post, so there will be additional Bernstein content added over the coming days and weeks.
Wanted to add my Thanks to you also. My entire family reads everyday, you dont know the number of times we ask one another "Did you read Robert Alt today?"
Its kept us informed and has been something to look forward to. Your like an old famiy friend! Good luck in your journey and stay safe! Our prayers are with you.
I wanted to thank you for your posting of the stories of the soldiers. Sfc. Mark Hutton, Cpl Clark, SSG. Gleason, Sgt Pugh ("Jimmy") are very good friends of mine and I really enjoy reading the stories and the missions they have done. Hutton and Clark were actually suppose to be in my wedding before they were deployed. My wife and I created a special yellow rose ceremony for them during the wedding where I presented Marks mother, Calebs fiancee, and John Shaws (another unit at FOB Cobra)fiancee a yellow rose. Again thank you for everything.
Mr. Alt, I too am going to jump on the bandwagon of thanks. Youve made these last x weeks soo much more bareable for me and my family. Thank you for giving a first hand account of whats really going on out there. I only wish the rest of American media took a similiar stance. So, whats next, after returning home? Writing a book? An appearance on the Oreilly Factor? thanks again Mr. Alt. God Bless
Mr. James: I am going to be in Iraq for a few more weeks to cover the transition, and then may (not certain yet) be off to Afghanistan to meet some of the soldiers there. While I have not heard from OReilly, I have a few requests pending from Fox News to provide analysis from Iraq in the coming days. I will provide details when I have them.
I have to once again thank you for all of your coverage at Bernstein. I will continue to follow your journeys on-line. I can assure you that Sgt. Blacks entire family appreciates your first hand coverage, pictures and personal opinions as well as your accounts of what is going on. I wish you a well on your continued journeys!
Mr. Alt, thank you for your factual coverage of Iraq___ Bernstein has been of special interest. I also want to thank you for Sgt. Blacks family. We appreciate your work. Glad to hear that you will be providing analysis to Fox News___ we need more of the good news from Irag. Wish I could be in Ohio on in September for your talk. Again, Thanks..you and the troops will be in our prayers.
Mr. Alt -- I am Sgt. Joseph Blacks wife. I too am so very grateful for your news and pictures of my husband and the rest of the soldiers from Ohio currently stationed at Bernstein. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. I will never be able to repay you, but I work for the Executive Director at The Western Reserve Historical Society in Cleveland and would be thrilled to give you a tour "on the house" when you get back in town! www.wrhs.org.
It would be nice to see you enter "the no spin zone" and join Bill in the public humiliation of some poor anti-war 3rd party. Stay safe Mr. Alt