New photos and first-person accounts from northern Iraq, from MSNBC combat corrrespondent Kevin Sites:
"Well sir, it's been a rough deployment. This — then the stuff at home — my wife's probably cheated on me 15 times," he shakes his head and takes a long
drag from the stub of his cigarette. Many of the men we see tonight are doing a version of the same thing, smoking — shaking their heads.
"I looked around town today," one lieutenant told me, "I was hoping to find someone doing something bad, somebody I could hurt — but there wasn't one. Just people that needed my help."
It's just that kind of mission whiplash that has confused and demoralized so many troops in Iraq. Soldiers are ordered to go on a night patrols or raids–where danger can lurk at every corner or behind every door — and life and death decisions have to be made within the hair-fraction of time it takes to pull the trigger on M4 assault weapon — then the next day, they're told to monitor the selection of a new local mayor or to rebuild a school.