Thursday, 25 February 2010

A Note From Mark

I figure I need to write this note so that those who have been praying for me, would have a better idea of what it is like in a war zone.

I live on a very large Forward Operating Base called FOB SHANK. Currently, I work in an office as a Program Manager for projects that are paid for using Commander's Emergency Relief Program (CERP) funds.
I also work with the Brigade S9, the staff officer that counsels the Commander on Civil-military operations, helping him to craft guidance for units so that they can more effectively consider civilian effects when they conduct their operations. If you have read the book, "Three Cups of Tea," my job is like the author's, except I carry a weapon.
The days are often very long as I work from 0900 to 2100, 2200 hours daily. The hardest thing for me is the separation from my wife and the grueling days. Often I try and get out and exercise, but often I get so busy, I forget. I try and celebrate Shabbat, but usually that means going to Friday night services and maybe taking some time off on Saturady. Other than that, I am constantly working, working, working.

I hope this gives you a better idea of what my days are like. I always pray that what I am doing is ultimately going to help improve the life of the average Afghan civilian. Thank you for your prayers. Please continue praying for me, my unit (173d Airborne and 405th CA), and the Afghan people.
Mark
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