Sangin, Afghanistan – Four weeks ago everything changed here. Where Marines with 1st Battalion, 5th Marines, of Camp Pendleton, Calif., had once tread cautiously and without serious incident, suddenly became a minefield.
Dormant hidden bombs began exploding underfoot and gunfights erupted following the poppy and wheat harvests.
The battalion arrived in Sangin in late April just before the so-called spring offensive, where the Taliban begin fighting the Americans. It was quiet, but now it’s anything but and it is expected to continue throughout the summer.
The security situation is better than it was a year ago, but there is a ways to go before it can be considered tamed.
“We’ve only been here since last summer,” said 1/5 commander Lt. Col. Tom Savage, referring to the two units that fought here before them – 3rd Battalion, 7th Marines and later 3rd Battalion, 5th Marines, the unit replaced by 1/5.
“About a month ago,” he said, “kinetics picked up, activity is up, there are a lot of gunfights.”
There are also a lot of improvised explosive devices, thousands, he said.
Most of the more than 100 wounds suffered by 1/5 Marines and Echo Company, 2nd Battalion, 8th Marines which is attached, have been from IEDs.
The battalion lost 11 Marines in its first 81 days in country.
“First of all, they’re Marines,” Savage said of how he keeps the grunts going when things are rough all around. “I talk to them a lot, I walk with them after they’ve had casualties. The best thing is get them right back out.”
IED’s are satanic…I just pray that no more Marine deaths will be incurred before Good triumphs over Evil…which it definitely will…my prayer is that this triumph is sooner than later..
Much love to the boys in 1/5. Y’all the best n ya know this. Keep up the good work… RAH
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my son is in the 1/5 as we speak in sangin .my god be with
all our troops in all places and keep them under his divine
protection at all times amen.
My son is also assigned to the 1/5 as a Rifle Platoon Leader and I am praying for each and every Marine there to include COL Savage who I met before the deployed. May God place a protective hedge around each of the Marines and confuse the enemy.
Everyday I pray Psalm 91 for my son who is in 1/5 CommData and all the 1/5 Marines…picked up the book by Peggy Joyce Ruth at the Family Event in Camp Pendleton before he deployed with the advance team. It is the Military Edition of “Psalm 91 God’s Shield of Protection.” Prayer protects our kids in combat and this psalm includes all God’s promises of protection – our group of BSM in Carson City are sending these books to our deployed sons & daughters. These books are for donation only thanks to The 1687 Foundation in Sisters, Oregon…email them at firstname.lastname@example.org and be blessed as this mom & other military families are. Powerful prayer & praise reports from military men & women who use Psalm 91!!
my son is currently assigned to a company with the 1/5. i pray for each and every one of them every day. know that they are great at what they do but they still need our prayers to be with them. may god be with every one of them at all times. praying for a safe return for them all. you all are doing a great job keep up the great work. much love to the 1/5. come home safely. robert i love you and will see you soon.
MY SON IS ALSO ASSIGNED TO COMPANY 1/5 OUT OF CAMP PENDLETON IN SAN DIEGO AND DEPLOYED TO SANGIN…I PRAY FOR EACH AND ONE OF THEM GOD PLEASE BRING THEM HOME SAFE ….HERES MY EMAIL IF ANYONE NEEDS SOMEONE TO TALK TOO ….CALVILLOGIRL13@YAHOO.COM…..VICTOR MIJO I MISS U AND LOVE U SO MUCH ….