Monday, February 02, 2004

Agenda For Today 
Turn in my projection of who's going to be driving what vehicle, and who else will be riding where as we leave for Kuwait, into the Battalion Executive Officer. We're trying to make sure that we have enough soldiers with the right weapons mixes to secure a series of small convoys to the town of around .

But in order to do that, I'm still looking for some hard answers from the battalion staff about who will be leaving early on an advance party.

Actually, all the companies are looking for some hard answers from the battalion staff, who are themselves looking for hard answers from the brigade staff, who in turn look for hard answers from the Division staff, and so on up the chain.

The problem is this: The 82nd division redeployment order is already written, but we're not on it. We're redeploying separately, since we've been here much longer (The Brigade didn't arrive until August, and we've been overseas since March).

Which means we're competing for staff 'bandwidth,' if you will, against operations and everything else which is going on, and getting information to our battalion just isn't a priority. The Brigade gains nothing by our movement. They just lose a battalion.

And so from where I sit, at the company level, the detailed instructions for a major redeployment are a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, shrouded in enigma, stuffed with pimentos, and served on a platter of smoke rings.

There are some things we can do though, and we've done some of them. Officer Evaluation Reports are done, at the company level. NCOERs will be done by the end of today, and signed. I have some investigations into lost or missing equipment to handle for the Bn S-4, or logistics officer.

We've inventoried our ammunition, but I'm still not clear on exactly what we can turn in and when. I've got a lot of mortar ammo taking up space, but we can't turn it in while we still may need to fire missions.

The ammunition turn in will be a fairly major project, actually.

Redeployment packet folders are done--just some admin stuff that gets us ahead of the game. We've already done a dog tag and ID card inspection, and we look pretty good there.

My biggest headache right now is equipment accountability. Equipment was traded, swapped, and swiped all over the place between sections all year, and in the rush of things, or because of laziness, the transfer wasn't always accompanied by a hand reciept.

We handed each section leader a copy of what they were originally signed for, and I'm giving them a few days to find their stuff.

We've also ordered hundreds of small items such as wrenches, chock blocks, fire extinguisher brackets, screw drivers, traffic hazard markers, lug nuts, simple green cleaner, and a zillion other knick-knacks in preparation for the cleaning, recovery, and movement.

Problem: I've got more trailers than I have trucks running to move them. I just did a count yesterday. And even if I get a couple of trucks back on the road, I can't have them *all* pulling trailers, because I've got to have some in reserve to pull vehicles that may (Read: WILL) break down on one of our long road movements.

So I've got to pull ahead in the maintenance game (a function of getting the right mix of spare parts through the system), or I've got to arrange to transfer some trailers to other units. Our Chief Maintenance Warrant Officer will take care of most of that, though.

That's a very partial list of things that are on my plate. I'll keep you posted.

Splash, out


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