The Battle for COP Keating (and how to donate to help the troops of 361 Cav)

 
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COP Keating Battle participant: “most people back home dont even know, no one gives a shit” The American Legion does, and we're going to prove it. NUMEROUS UPDATES AT BOTTOM, PLEASE READ ALL OF THIS POST. And go look at the pictures that some folks from Texas sent in. I like it, you send me your pics and I will put them up, maybe even a new thread on it! [NOTE: In the battle for Combat Outpost Keating, the men of Bravo Troop 361 Cavalry lost every possession they had, save for the clothes on their backs. Following this blog posting is information on how to donate to the Combat Outpost Keating Relief Fund. These men have lost friends, their outpost, and all their belongings. One soldier who made it out wrote that “most people back home dont even know, no one gives a shit”. Well, many of us do. And you can prove it by giving whatever you can.] Last weekend the insurgents attacked two Combat Outposts in the Nuristan region of Afghanistan. Before we delve into the day-long battle and the aftermath, watch these videos from COP Keating that were taken this summer by Britain’s Channel 4 News photographer Stuart Webb. More:

COP Keating is located far up in the Mountains on the border of Pakistan. Here's a map to give you an idea, courtesy of The New York Times. 05afghan_map_enlarge From the Times Online:

It began before dawn — a devastating, well-planned attack. About 300 insurgents swarmed out of a village and mosque and attacked a pair of isolated American outposts in a remote mountainous area of eastern Afghanistan with machineguns, rockets and grenades. They first stormed the Afghan police post at the foot of the hill in the province of Nuristan, a Taleban and al-Qaeda stronghold on the lawless Pakistan border. They then swept up to the Nato post. The battle lasted all day. American and Afghan soldiers finally repelled them, with the help of US helicopters and warplanes — but at heavy cost. Eight American soldiers and two Afghan policemen were killed, with many injured. It was the worst attack on Nato forces in 14 months, and one of the deadliest battles of the eight-year war.
According to Bill Roggio of Long War Journal:
The US military described the attackers as “Nuristani tribal militia” and said that “the sources of the conflict in the area involve complex tribal, religious and economic dynamics.” Afghan officials described the attackers as Taliban, Uzbek, and Arab fighters who crossed into Afghanistan from Pakistan.
The story itself absolutely epitomizes the spirit of America's warriors. Karen Russo of ABC news boarded a MEDEVAC bird heading to pick up the wounded:
Flying into the besieged Afghan base during a nighttime firefight this weekend was a harrowing mix of overwhelming noise, stomach dropping maneuvers and shadows hurrying through the gloom. When the chopper lifted off moments later with three wounded soldiers, it left behind others who were wounded but refused to be MEDEVACED out of the combat zone so they could return to fight with their buddies.
Even as the battle raged around them...
Soldiers told the MEDEVAC crew that troops were donating blood during the battle, so it could be transfused into wounded comrades.
The MEDEVACS took the casualties out and took them to a forward surgical base. Here is an account from a medical professional who worked on the wounded. (WARNING: What follows is incredibly graphic.) From the Military Blog Household 6 in a blog posting entitled "SGT Daddy's Story":
The morning began with the siren signaling incoming. I ignored it. I hate putting on my gear and besides the big boy voice had dutifully reminded me that I should remain in hard shelter. I didn’t argue by deed or word. In the meantime the 155’s began to blaze away in support of some action that did not affect me. Later I was called out of my room to help in the aid station. Two of the COB (combat operations base ) were in the midst of a full on assault by the Taliban... The first litter patient came in and there was no time to affix the wrist band so I followed him back. My heart was racing. I put the bracelet on quickly and got the hell out of the way as the FST began quickly in a measured fashion working on the patient. I think he was American. I hurried back to the door as the next patient was coming in. It was an Afghan Army Soldier. I again followed the casualty to affix his bracelet. I again met the next patient at the door. It was another Afghan soldier. He could walk but he had to be guided in as his was face bandaged up. With shaking hands I put on the bracelet. The medics got him on a stretcher and began assessing his wounds. PFC H would later recount how the soldier had taken shrapnel to the face and lost both eyes, his nose and some of his lip. The next casualties coming in were to be all ambulatory. Some of us had 5 minutes to collect ourselves. For most it meant cleaning up and resetting for the due in casualties. For the FST, it continued to be a fight to save a soldiers life.
An ISAF Press Release stated succinctly that:
"My heart goes out to the families of those we have lost and to their fellow Soldiers who remained to finish this fight," said Col. Randy George, commander of Task Force Mountain Warrior. "This was a complex attack in a difficult area. Both the U.S. and Afghan Soldiers fought bravely together; I am extremely proud of their professionalism and bravery." Names will be withheld pending next of kin notification.
For even more information on the Battle for COP Keating and the aftermath, go to the Mudville Gazette, where Greyhawk has a complete round-up. ______________________________________________________________ I began getting e-mails almost immediately from those in country, and those stateside who were worried about deployed loved ones.  One email in particular from a combatant in the battle hit me particularly hard. It read, in part:
“most people back home dont even know, no one gives a shit”
We care.  Now prove it.  Here is where to donate online using your credit card. Here is where to mail checks: COP Keating Relief Fund PO Box 1954 Indianapolis 46206 Here is an online form that you can send in with your checks.  Make sure you have COP Keating Relief Fund on the check so we can allocate it correctly. [Taking down direct mailing address until it is cleared through an actual contact in country.] Since creating the secure online donation form Wednesday afternoon,  donations are pouring in. The American Legion could not be happier. At my latest count we are nearing $6,000. All the soldier’s necessities have been taken care of. We are now focusing on buying comfort items. There are a lot of moving parts on this, but I have been working with Veterans of Valor. They distribute top of the line iPods that come with 10 movies and a bunch of songs already on the iPod. There are 56 guys not MEDEVAC'd. At $300 a pop that is $16,800 which is my new goal. I plan to buy them next week and get movies and songs loaded on and shipped immediately. If I don't get that amount, we will dial it back and ship 56 somethings. If they are not as high quality as the topnotch ones, so be it. But no soldier will go unloved as our friends at Soldiers' Angels like to say. What I still need is transport. I have transport provided by Gryphon Airlines from Kuwait to Kandahar. I still need transport from here to Kuwait if someone knows someone who knows someone… this may be rectified shortly, as there is someone also working on the transport side. THIS HAS BEEN PHENOMENAL. Please keep the word out there. A Special Thanks to Tankerbabe from Cow Pastures to Kosovo who was spearheading entire shipments of things. I will have more "Thank You"'s later when I sort through the hundreds of emails. UPDATE: Over $8000 and 87 donors. That is a phenomenal amount of money. I thank each and every one of you personally now, and will be following up with you. UPDATE: Sent from the great Republic State of Texas! This marks the first time this blogger ever got misty-eyed over a sign with profanity! IGAS1 IGAS2 IGAS4 IGAS3 IGAS5 It's a great day isn't it? UPDATE: I am not adding to this, but here is an email and accompanying photo you need to see. The guys were only getting one meal a day so I sent about $500.00 worth of food so they sent this picture after they recieved it. Two fallen sodiers are in it. My son is the one standing center in the back with a cap and hand in pocket. I am so proud of all these men. Thank you so much for your efforts. They really need to know this battle and loss of life was not in vain. - Mary Henry. ( By the way, my son's name is Sgt Eric Harder)

361 CAV

Posted in Uncategorized, the burner | 247 comments
 
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[...] is from The Burnpit; In the battle for Combat Outpost Keating, the men of Bravo Troop 361 Cavalry lost every possession [...]

[...] the battle or the people involved or if you would like more info on what the guys over there need, follow this link to the Burn Pit. Let’s get these guys refitted and ready to go again because if we want to keep quality [...]

My VFW post has been looking for ways to donate to troops that will make a difference-this is perfect. Who can I make a check out to, and where do I send it?

I give a shit !!! Same old - same old. Government spends many trillions of dollars on weapons systems and they choose not to use them. They let the guys on the gound get butchered. Think about it. The last war/conflict we won was 1945. Now add up the money we have spent on weapons systems since then.
I went through this same crap in 1965.

[...] The American Legion also stepped up to lead in lifting the morale of these brave warriors another way: [...]

If only our once valued media still reported the news without bias we might be informed. I for one care deeply as a Vet and a father of a 20 year old son who is enlisting in January, 19 Delta. Thank you to all that serve. IAmerica is still worth fighting for, give 'em Hell and God Bless.

MY SON WHO IS IN AFGHANISTAN TOLD ME OF THOSE THAT LOST EVERYTING I HOPE TO BE ABLE TO GATHER UP SUPPORT HERE IN OUR HOMETOWN TO SEND SUPPLIES OR DONATIONS. I'LL PRAY FOR THOSE WHO DIED AND THOSE WHO ARE LEFT BEHIND TO CARRY ON. GOD BLESS YOU ALL

There are many who do care and you are in their thoughts and prayers ...thank you for this site to give the info the 10PM news does not.
God Bless and keep each of you safe...just one of the many Soldier's Angels

All I can say is I DO give a shit-I just gave $10, not much but I hope it helps-Thanks and i am sorry :(

Why in the WORLD is that outpost in the bottom of the well? Are the officers over that so clueless that they don't know any better? What's even worse is that the troopers actually believe that nobody stateside gives a shit. That lack of leadership starts in the Oval Office and rolls down. That is just heartbreaking to hear that.

Thank you. I will be donating and also linking this article on a couple of sites, in order to get more people aware of this situation.

I think the American people don't care because they DON'T KNOW. The blame for that lies squarely on the media and the CIC and Congress.

If you still need it, I have a contact in Kuwait. I don't see a contact person on this site to send it to.

Chipped in my ante to the pot! I sincerely wish it could be more, but every little bit helps. It is not the drip that makes the difference, but rather the wave that changes the shore. Hope united effort this bring aid and comfort to the brave men and women we place in harm's way. My thoughts and prayers are with them and their colleagues every day -- in war and in peace. Military service is the ultimate obligation of citizenship -- willingness to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States. To those in uniform, honorable military service is a selfless commitment to democracy. Thank everyone who is participating in this modest initiative to provide "creature comforts" to those at the tip of the spear.

By now they should know we DO GIVE A SHIT! or will as soon as the shipments begin arriving. It's amazing to watch things come together when people are able to get the info to help. No thanks to the media, they only show what helps get across their wish that we should pull out. As the CIC spends his time worrying about getting the Olympics to his hometown!!!!! I've been sending care boxes to the KOP area for many years and not too much has changed. If they would just let them fight the war it could be ended, can't be PC and win a war!

[...] donations are rolling in for the guys that had to de-ass COP Keating and set it to the torch. Tankerbabe has also set up a site for donations of clothing, sundries, [...]

WE CARE UP HERE IN NORTHERN MICHIGAN. OUR HEARTS ARE PAINED BY THE LOSS THAT THESE SOLDIERS AND FAMILIES OF THE FALLEN HAVE HAD. May the family of those 8 Warriors, including SPC Christopher Griffin, from a town just north of us, know that thier son's did NOT die in vain. Our prayers are with each family and the soldiers still fighting. Help from all over America is on the way! We LOVE YOU!!!

[...] at the American Legion’s Burn Pit blog writes that “[i]n the battle for Combat Outpost Keating, the men of Bravo Troop 361 Cavalry [...]

[...] Here is an online form that you can send in with your checks. Make sure you have COP Keating Relief Fund on the check so we can allocate it correctly. [...]

Words cannot express my gratitude, thanks for keeping us safe, despite the seeming apathy. There are still MILLIONS of Americans who are grateful, and those of us who have "been there". Where ever you go in the world, in the worst of places, times, calamities and wars, you will find Americans there, sacrificing.

Made my contribution. I am glad to see lots of folks care. The US servicemen and servicewomen are the best folks we as a country have and it is a priveldge to be there for them however one can.

From someone who was there 41 years ago please be assured that "we do give a shit". Our contribution is on the way along with our prayers. May God bless all of you.

Good Morning America cares ALOT! Every day they share additional information about this fierce firefight and I stop what I'm doing and watch with a heavy heart and tears in my eyes. I am an Army brat and am presently the Mother-in-Law of a Ranger who will be deployed for the 4th time next March. Every time he leaves, my heart races and my prayers don't stop until he is safely on US soil. I not only pray for him but for all of you brave soldiers who are over there fighting for our rights to enjoy the things you should also be enjoying. PLEASE be safe and return home soon to YOUR loved ones. We need you here with us! God Bless each and every one of you. Thank you for your service.

I do give a shit, I know what combat is like been there and done that, but that was during the Vietnam War and I'm behind my troops, and whatever I can do or my comrades can do, we will help these guys out. Im going to send out an email to our Post of the American Legion and the Veterans of Foreign Wars and see if we can scrap enough dough for these guys.

Please forgive my ignorance. What do you mean this outfit lost everything? If these men are OUR troops how can they go without. I will gladly give to help those in need, but what are we replacing? Is it military items they need and if so (don't laugh) why won't the government provide this for them since they are part of our military? I respect and support our troops and can't believe that they would be expected to go without ANYTHING they need. I know we need to give them more troops and sadly "The One" in DC is trying to come up with a "compromise." Any more information you can offer would be greatly appreciated. Thank you and please ~God Bless our Troops!

Thank you for this! I have sent the links around and donated via the website. And, to the 361 Cav and everyone serving this country in the Armed Forces, THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE!

Any chance we can get individual names so we can send small things like magazines, etc through the mail?

-Jeff

Sue- The military will replace the military stuff. The COP (Or FOB) was destroyed, with all their stuff. These guys will get army issue socks, but they are not good. Guys want hiking socks. Stuff like that. Personal stuff I doubt the army is replacing. Even if they do, it would be months from now. I don't want them sitting around in crappy gear with nothing to do, and all the time in the world to think about what happened. I want them to know we care NOW. So, we're trying to get stuff out to them that they can use right away.

A very valid question you had that I was remiss in not explaining before. I tend to get tunnel vision on things.

Jeff- Send it to the CSM listed above and write under his name "For any 361 CAV Soldier." The CSM will know what to do.

Sue, as it says on the link for the donations, they have lost all their personal items, like iPods, DVD players, running shoes. The things that make the post more bearable. The Army is not going to replace those things. While no one can replace family photos and letters from home, we can sure help out with the other stuff. It's not like these guys are getting rich out there . . .

Thanks for the explanation. Millions of people do care and many wept when we heard the horrible story. It is so difficult to understand some of these situations when we've NEVER been in a situation like this and BECAUSE of these brave men and women chances are we never will. Hopefully, you will receive enough money to go above and beyond the basics of what they need and send really great items that can bring them comfort. I will pass this link on to all on my contact list. Thank you for giving us this opportunity to help those in need. They are willing to give their lives. The least we can do is give them comfort and prayers.

I am proud to be an American and know that as Americans we support our fighting men and women. My daughter is a veteran of Dessert Storm and My Son-in-Law started with Iraqi Freedom and is still at it. He came home from the Gulf in the spring. I pray for all our military and know that we do care back home. I belong to the American Legion Auxiliary and Legion family members are always doing things for our troops. We give a shit and so do many Americans all across this great country. I will put my money where my mouth is and ask all others to do the same. Snowflakes are formed by many tiny peices of snow. Put them together and you get something amazing.

God Bless and protect each of you.

It's obvious our soldiers are without resources and leadership in this Afghan War. Our Commander in Chief does not provides a strategy, or the necessary resources. I think it's time to withdraw from Afghanistan and bring our soldiers home .. It is unfortunate our politicians in Washington are not supporting our troops. Wait until the next ELECTION.

We do care! We have a AF nephew in Kabul and a Marine nephew still in the States but about to be deployed. WE DO CARE AND WE WANT TO SEND YOU STUFF. What do you need? CDs? DVDs? Batteries? Toiletries? Snacks? Gum? Socks and underwear? Magazines? You name it!

Really dumb question - are those mailing addresses recognizable by most shipping places like FedEx?

The Block/Kearney Family: Tankerbabe has a list of needed items on her website. There's a link on the home page of this blog.

I GIVE A SH!T! (Those words have not stopped rending my soul since I first read them) I put my dollars in! I have two in the military. A Son who is a combat medic in the Army who returned from Iraq in February after 15 mos. My Daughter is in our State's Army National Guard. Through them both we have met so many fine young men and women. I care very deeply and have been completely out of sorts since hearing of this weekends events. You keep the faith Guys! You are the one percenters of our country, the one percent of our population who have stood up to defend us! YOU are our true shining stars! We love you more than words can express! Know that you are in my thoughts, you are always in my prayers and ever in my heart!

Hope
An Army Mom who does give a Sh!T!

American Legion, thank you for giving me this opportunity to help.

[...] they had, save for the clothes on their backs. American Legion Family members are being asked to go to this web page and learn how they can donate to the Combat Outpost Keating Relief Fund. These men have lost [...]

OOPS My Husband just reminded me...An Army Mom who is Married to an "Old-Navy" Guy who gives a Sh!T Too !

I was forwarded your story and want you to know you are not forgotten. October 24th all of Cookie Platoon's 80 bakers will be baking for all of you and we will be shipping them to you. It may sound like something crazy but we ship once a month and I wanted to let all of you know that we care about you and we support all of you! If you have any questions please visit our website www.cookieplatoon.com
With much respect,
Debbie Schaefer
Cookie Platoon Founder/Director

After the comfort needs of those who survived are met, I suggest that you provide scholarships to the children of those who gave their lives. The American Legion is doing a great job!

Sofie2, we are already on that! :)

Look at The American Legion's Legacy Scholarships:

http://www.legion.org/programs/resources/scholarships

I also give a shit and want each and every surviving member of the Bravo Troop 361 Cavalry to know that there are many civilians that care. I sponser two service members through The Soldier's Angels organization but will be sending a care package to a member of the Bravo Troop 361 Cavalry, as well as making a cash donation and keeping each and every service person in my thoughts and prayers each day! God Bless You All for keeping this country safe and secure - You have my utmost respect and admiration!

My check will be in the mail tomorrow morning. Thanks for the heads up and the videos.

Thank you for the heads up. My check will go out in the morning mail.

You bet we give a shit!, As we sit in our warm dry homes surfing the web knowing the brave young men and women who volunteered to protect us from the axis of evil are in harms way. May God bless as we are praying the CIC will let you win this time.

To all you men and women serving this country. we admire and love you for putting your lives on the line everyday for us. I'm glad to have the privilege of donating to help replace what you've lost. We needed people like these during the Vietnam War but they were few and far between. GOD BLESS AND KEEP YOU SAFE!!!!!!!!!!!!!

A fellow veteran.............................

I too give a shit. I wish you guys could know how much we care; how we wish there was more we could do for you. I am so sorry and heartbroken for the incredible hardships and obstacles you face - the country and terrain you're in; the hostile people and cowardly enemies; the inadequate, waffling, and careless leadership that is busy with what is politically expedient while you fight and die. Please know how infinitely grateful and immensely proud I (and the vast majority of our wonderful country) are of you; we do not ever forget - ever - and we are fighting here for you (and our country) as well. Thank you.

Cindi

Kudos to the folks from the great Republic of Texas!! ~gives'em a DFW-sized round of applause~ Thanks for posting their pix on your blog, and thanks for making all of the information in this article available. To the folks at COP Keating: We DO give a shit. We seriously give a shit, and we're going to make sure that everyone we can gets this message. Lots of Americans do care about you guys, despite the tone in Washington of late. We plan on proving that to you, and to the rest of your comrades in arms. Hang in there!

Beth
SA Volunteer
The GREAT Republic of Texas

I think about you all each and every day and I pray that God will protect you from harm. As a vet -who comes from a long line of Veterans- I am proud of each and every one of you......I honor your sacrifice and courage under fire...I shall never FORGET!!! it is where we get our freedom and Liberty from....YOU!!!!!.
I am forever grateful of your sacrifice...
Loves you much and wish your family well......
God Bless you all....
happy hunting them dirtbags.....

JEFF, only the US Postal Service delivers over here, the flat rate priority boxes are usually the best deal (according to my mom and sisters).

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News from the World of Military and Veterans Issues. Iraq and A-Stan in parenthesis reflects that the author is currently deployed to that theater.