JOINT BASE BALAD, Iraq – Reporting from Iraq can feel like one is in the golden age of newspapers. I have a TV in my room but am usually too busy to watch it. And I don’t have a consistent online hookup to check news Web sites. So I get my daily update provided by Stars and Stripes, the military newspaper.
It’s great. I’m usually one of the most plugged-in people I know; ask my wife to hear about my addiction to the BlackBerry and the constant updates of news it provides. But now I can take a bit of a mental break from all that during the day.
The guys from Fort Lewis’ 555th Engineer Brigade can also appreciate some hard-copy news from back home. In the lounge at the brigade headquarters at Joint Base Balad sat a stack of Northwest Guardians. A bunch of them had the signs of being well-read.
Working in this industry sometimes feels like watching the Hindenburg disaster in slow-motion, but seeing this gave me a shot of optimism.