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Posted: 12/10/2005 1:58:02 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/10/2005 2:55:40 PM EDT by Jim-Scoutten]
Guys:

We've just this week launched Operation Thank You for the troops deployed to Forward Operating Bases in Iraq and Afghanistan. AR-15.com is the biggest gathering place for gun nuts on the internet, so you could play a major role in this if you wish.

The short story: I got an e-mail from a First Sergeant with the 101st Airborn deployed outside Tikrit. He said part of his work was morale and wondered if I could send some Shooting USA stuff over, since they can see the shows on AFN TV in their FOB mess hall. I replied, sure... but then got to thinking that our viewers might want to also get involved with a card or a small package. So we set it up on our website www.ShootingUSA.com as Operation Thank You.

Each month we are choosing a different unit to be the recipients of whatever anybody wants to send over. So far it seems to be going well, but we won't really know what has been sent until the sergeant goes to mail-call in about 10 days.

Check it out and join the Christmas cheer if you choose to.

Slogan for Operation Thank You:

Because there's more we can do than sticking a yellow ribbon on our cars.

We've also got a blog site linked out with comments from folks who have sent stuff. That's also going to be the place for messages back from the troops when the stuff gets there.

Give it a look and feel a bit better about life in the States at Christmas.

Jim

Link Posted: 12/10/2005 1:58:44 PM EDT
tag
Link Posted: 12/10/2005 2:02:50 PM EDT
dang-it, where's my Santa smilie???
Link Posted: 12/10/2005 2:05:07 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Jim-Scoutten:
dang-it, where's my Santa smilie???



EdSr sold it for beer money.

Cool idea, Jim. Thanks for bringing it over here.
Link Posted: 12/10/2005 2:22:08 PM EDT
Wow!

I just checked my e-mail and some of the early stuff is starting to show up at FOB Speicher!

Army Mail (APO) is running fast at this time of year.

Thank you note just came in to one of the viewers who was quick to send a package.

Jim
Link Posted: 12/10/2005 2:23:53 PM EDT
Congrats, Jim.

The troops deserve everything we can do for them.
Link Posted: 12/10/2005 2:58:13 PM EDT
We're finding out if AR15.com Members agree.

Just a Christmas Card this month will make a big difference.

How to mail is on the website www.ShootingUSA.com

Jim
Link Posted: 12/10/2005 3:24:49 PM EDT
tag
Link Posted: 12/10/2005 4:02:37 PM EDT
Link Posted: 12/11/2005 1:36:35 AM EDT
Great idea, I just self nominated my unit, hope you don't mind! Lots of gun nuts here with us so this would be well received.
Link Posted: 12/11/2005 2:22:59 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Garand_Shooter:
Great idea, I just self nominated my unit, hope you don't mind! Lots of gun nuts here with us so this would be well received.




With what you explained of your mission, you guys warrant being the January unit of the month.

I'll meet you in private e-mail to get the program set up.

Many thanks for your service. And Merry Christmas to you and the troops in Bravo Company.

Jim
Link Posted: 12/11/2005 2:25:10 AM EDT
Whatever we can do to help, we will.



Link Posted: 12/11/2005 3:05:16 AM EDT
While we're setting up GarandShooter's unit for January...

There's still time to send a card or letter of thanks to the unit-of-the-month for December.

Screaming Eagles Motto: Expect No Mercy!

Check out how to do it on the home page of www.ShootingUSA.com

Jim
Link Posted: 12/11/2005 1:19:20 PM EDT
this is really cool stuff that you all are doing. Im slated to head over in october and stuff like this can make a crappy week/month go a hell of a lot better.
Link Posted: 12/12/2005 3:27:20 AM EDT

Originally Posted By nickforney:
this is really cool stuff that you all are doing. Im slated to head over in october and stuff like this can make a crappy week/month go a hell of a lot better.




It's the crappy YEAR of boredom, punctuated by moments of extreme risk... that concerns us all back home.

Be safe in your duty,

Jim
Link Posted: 12/14/2005 2:24:54 AM EDT
Hey Jim how about an autogaphed picdor this deployed grunt? Been a dan for a long time....loved the bit with you and the Uzi at indoor range in Nevada cuting loose with tracers!
Link Posted: 12/14/2005 2:52:04 AM EDT
Thank you, we've been sending care packages to friends and family in Iraq for some time now.

For everyone who is interesting in supporting our troops:

The larger bases are pretty well equipped now, with base exchanges that have virtually anything they might need. But the Forward Operating Bases are are remote with few niceties available.

These are mostly young guys, 19-22 and into cars, hunting, guns, etc. They really enjoy getting magazines about what they dream about doing when they get back home. www.anysoldier.com has a good list of things they can use over there. Once you get to know them, they'll let you know if they have any special requests.

Link Posted: 12/14/2005 6:00:17 AM EDT
Cards sent!
Thanks for this info. I sent it to all of my family and friends.
Link Posted: 12/14/2005 8:32:59 AM EDT
once again the pogs back in the bases have it made while the grunt sits in a fob. some of the guys in my unit put togeather money for mags to send over. mainly motorcycle misc firearms ones and of course the stuff/maxim type ones.

one thing my brother said he liked was getting in cataloges. like cabelas bushmaster all those types. so I emailed a bunch of manufactures asking them for them.
Link Posted: 12/14/2005 3:57:44 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Warhawk:
Thank you, we've been sending care packages to friends and family in Iraq for some time now.

For everyone who is interesting in supporting our troops:

The larger bases are pretty well equipped now, with base exchanges that have virtually anything they might need. But the Forward Operating Bases are are remote with few niceties available.




Warhawk is right. So I'm only choosing Grunts in FOBs to be our units of the month for Op Thank You.

Wait until you see the photos I have in from GarandShooter whose unit in Afghanistan is going to be the January unit of the month. No POGs, if you speak the language.

(Son Sgt. Mike returns from FOB Gabe North of Baghdad in January. I learned the language during a year of IM messaging with him. He's occasionally been sent to one of the big bases and was amazed at the facilities that he and his team don't have at their FOB.)

Thanks to all of you who are sending.

Jim
Link Posted: 12/14/2005 4:19:40 PM EDT

Originally Posted By bronk1:
Hey Jim how about an autogaphed picdor this deployed grunt? Been a dan for a long time....loved the bit with you and the Uzi at indoor range in Nevada cuting loose with tracers!



Where are you? And what's wrong with your "f" key?

But if you're serious, sure I'll send a photo. IM me your APO address.

Jim
Link Posted: 12/14/2005 4:22:51 PM EDT
Here's the payoff!

Photo and message in from 1SG Curtis Jones on the arrival of mail at FOB Speicher.

Have a look.

operationthankyou.blogspot.com/

Jim
Link Posted: 12/14/2005 5:13:09 PM EDT
Link Posted: 12/15/2005 6:16:34 AM EDT
Thanks Jim
Ive been doing monthy care packages for awhile but most of my contacts have been at bases that have been built up to the point that they dont need the basic stuff anymore.
I am putting the forward bases on my rotation.

Thanks again
Link Posted: 12/15/2005 6:46:05 AM EDT

So I'm only choosing Grunts in FOBs to be our units of the month for Op Thank You.




Is there any further description of what the selected FOB conditons are like, as in, do they need just quick things like a log of Cope and jerky because there is little down time? Or, are they sitting around bored everyday and needing batteries for the DVD players, magazines, and poker chips?

Also a long time back, there was a huge thread that listed the preference between certified, parcel post, and all other types of mail to ensure that good items didn't find their way into the hands of less-than-good mail handlers. Anyone recall which to use?
Link Posted: 12/15/2005 7:17:24 AM EDT
Excellent! Tag for followup from home . . .
Link Posted: 12/15/2005 7:18:12 AM EDT
From what I've understood:

Parcel Post is very slow and may go by boat. The Parcel Post deadling for Christmas was back in Mid-November.

First Class and Priority Mail move by air all the way over and take about 10 days to get there.

Keep in mind that all this stuff moves via the DOD Mail system once it leaves the APO or FPO. If there are thieves, they are the same ones with either method.

Finally this note: The Grunts in the FOBs are definitely not bored. With the election build up in Iraq and the expected violence, it's been 4 hours of sleep and then back out on patrol, punctuated by the occasional door kicking raid and IEDs. Time back in their home-built quarters is resting time... with maybe a DVD to watch.

Jim
Link Posted: 12/15/2005 4:27:13 PM EDT
Package sent!
Link Posted: 12/15/2005 7:56:55 PM EDT
Speicher is pretty big and built up itself, its not quite on par with Anaconda but we did our best to build it up in 03' when there was nothing but broken glass and poo in every building. I wonder if my boxing ring is still up? Im gonna have to remember this during our next rotation this summer, I wont get my Shooting USA on the DVR in Iraq.
Link Posted: 12/16/2005 1:13:21 AM EDT

Originally Posted By nf9648:
Im gonna have to remember this during our next rotation this summer, I wont get my Shooting USA on the DVR in Iraq.



Actually you can get your Shooting USA on AFN Sports Channel in the mess hall. Armed Forces Networks picks up the shows and airs them world-wide-176 countries and all the ships at sea.

They particularly liked our show on Ronnie Barrett: "So he's the guy who made this big .50."

Jim
Link Posted: 12/16/2005 9:22:17 PM EDT
Ive still got that episode on my DVR here at the house. Id like to get one before Hawaii continues its "kalifornacation" and bans them.
Link Posted: 12/17/2005 8:48:18 PM EDT
Tag.
Link Posted: 12/17/2005 8:56:11 PM EDT
tag
Link Posted: 12/17/2005 10:33:28 PM EDT
Too cool. I've been wanting to do something like this for a while but did not know anyone that was deployed. I'll have something out in Mondays mail. Thanks for the opertunity to give something back to our guys and gals deployed in the sandbox!
Link Posted: 12/18/2005 4:44:27 AM EDT

Originally Posted By soowah:
Too cool. I've been wanting to do something like this for a while but did not know anyone that was deployed. I'll have something out in Mondays mail. Thanks for the opportunity to give something back to our guys and gals deployed in the sandbox!



That was exactly the idea, that I probably knew a lot of folks who wanted to do something... so we just set up the contact and the instructions on how to do it.

Jim

Link Posted: 12/18/2005 3:25:23 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/19/2005 1:49:38 PM EDT by 1-75Ranger]
If I may chime in here a bit, I have read many of these type of post and I feel that the people back home don't understand what it like over here now. I am at a FOB east of Ramadi, the bases and FOB's here all have some sort of PX's on them at this point, the invasion is over!

Wet Ones are everywhere ovee here along with sunscreen, toothpaste and toothbrushes. We don't need bug spray or lip blam either. You see every shool or church that knows somebody sends those products to us ALL the time, we have tons of it here.

I think Jim's program is very good but the lists need to be revised on what guys need here, so I will add I feel are good products for the soldiers now:

Boresnakes .22 and .30 cal
Brownells Chamber mops and the shop mops
Dewy Cleaning Rods
Anything that helps clean the M4 chambers
Photon or any other type of squeeze led lights all colors are good, RED is the best
good socks
OD or brown t-shirts
Shave brushes for cleaning weapons
Stuff/maxim mag..they are ok to send
DVD we watch anything
Snuff, guys never have enough
Antacid tabs
phone cards
nails, masonary nails
hammers
small saws
other small handtools... sears carry good combo for 20 dollars
pens/pencils..the kids here don't have school supplies always begs us for them
ben gay/sportscream...we get very sore
fabreeze
lighters
Plastic Bowls (MW Safe) Plastic Spoons, Knives and forks
Multi-Vitamins
Mach 3 Razor Blades

I will add more as I think of them...you see Iraq is a very different place now we have been here for almost 3 yrs or so...the bases are all very built up now.

I hope thise helps some, keep up the good work Jim.
Link Posted: 12/18/2005 10:25:05 PM EDT
The FOB's here in Afghanistan are different. No PX expect a small unit-run one (I could shove everything it has in 2 duffle bags), but building supplies are no problem. If it is not issued, we have to have it sent in or get our terps to buy it in town for us.
Link Posted: 12/19/2005 2:39:35 AM EDT
I-75 Ranger gives us good direction for the current unit of the month.

GarandShooter's unit is on deck for January where the needs are more basic.

(Ranger, send me an E-mail on what your unit is, the mission, and where. We got lots of months ahead.) Jim@ShootingUSA.com

Jim
Link Posted: 12/19/2005 10:35:40 AM EDT
tg
Link Posted: 12/19/2005 6:14:27 PM EDT
Jim,
Long time show watcher, new to AR forum. Heard your son was over here, but after reading this thread I am suprised to hear he is on FOB Gabe. I have been on Gabe for seven months now and will also be leaving in January. He is spot on about the lack of facilites here compared to the big bases. That said, I might have a "nicety" or two that he doesn't get on his part of the FOB. If you happen to talk to him soon tell him, if he wants, to come to the ODA compound and ask for Matt. Anyway, thanks for organizing this program for all the deployed soldiers. I can tell you that it really bothers me, the short attention span of the general US population, and this program lets all of us know that we are still in thoughts and prayers. So thanks again for the great work.

Matt
Link Posted: 12/19/2005 9:55:54 PM EDT
tagged
Link Posted: 1/1/2006 3:41:03 PM EDT
Watch this space.

A Forum member's unit is up for January. (Garand Shooter)

We'll post Tuesday on the Operation Thank You portion of the website.

Happy New Year.

Jim
Link Posted: 1/1/2006 3:46:19 PM EDT
tag
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