Thursday, October 05, 2006


We are spending two days in TSIRT. I don't even know what the acronym stands for, but it's a fair bet that the last "T" is for "Training".

It was a very long day and I'm tired, so this will be a short entry, and also the last one for a few days until I get settled back at Ft. McPherson and can get back to an internet connection sometime over the weekend.

Some of the training we got was classified "For Official Use Only", so I can't talk about a lot of specific details, but it revolved around two major subjects. One was how to recognize and react to unexploded ordnance and improvised explosive devices (UXO/IED). That was pretty good - we had some classroom lectures and then went outside and went through practical exercises in recognizing the types of devices they have been encountering in theater.

The second half of the day was first aid training. One of the things they issued us the other day that I didn't write about was the new individual first aid kit. I opened it up and looked at it last night. I've always been kind of fascinated by first aid kits, but this one is really high-speed. It is a no-nonsense combat first aid kit, way better than anything I've ever seen before. It contains tape, a trauma dressing, a couple of smaller battle dressings, a breathing tube to open the airway, and a CAT - "Combat Action Tourniquet", which can be self-applied with one hand.

So this afternoon we got classroom training and practical exercises in first aid for traumatic injuries. Most of the photographs they used in the presentations were from in theater, and were pretty graphic. I naturally have mixed feelings about it - it's comforting to know that the Army is so serious about taking care of the individual soldiers - this first aid kit and the training we received were developed based on past experience and have resulted in a substantial decrease in combat fatalities. But it also drives home the reality of the conflict in a dramatic and graphic way. It's good to know that everyone who goes over there has this training and has this type of equipment with them, even if I am not going to be in the worst parts of the actual combat zones.

Tomorrow we go out to the TSIRT site again for weapons qualification and some tactical training. Then we go back to the MTC to outprocess and I'll be picked up to go back to Ft. McPherson. I expect to spend tomorrow night back in the Atlanta area.

Because this is a four-day weekend for government workers, nobody will be around Ft. McPherson from Friday through Monday and I'll be on my own. I expect to be occupied sorting through all this equipment and figuring out what to take and what to leave behind, and how to pack it.

I'm sure I'll end up back at the Panera Bread in the Lenox Square Mall in Atlanta at some point to get my "internet fix". But until then I'll be cut off. I've been slowly getting used to have my internet connection in short doses. I have become so used to having it available all day, every day, that it has been very odd not to have it. It makes me feel very cut off at times. It's almost funny when you look at the lengths I have to go to to get online, but it's worth it since so much of my connection with the world now flows through this little machine. :-)


At 15:32, Blogger Spoiled in Paradise said...

TSIRT Theater Specific Individual Readiness Training

Source :

At 21:56, Anonymous Fred J. said...


...interesting to drop in from time to time and catch up on your progress. I respect, even envy you because of this endeavor. We haven't talked politics but I guess you and I are pretty close to each other on the right (right and right) end of the scale. I'd like to wish you luck, but luck seems so inadequate given what's before you. You're solid. You'll be fine, and we, back home, will be better for it! Fred Jackson


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