According to the New York Times, dated September 28, 2014, President Obama "had placed too much trust in the Iraqi military."
He should have read An Angel From Hell
"We began to run into everyday problems with them, mostly due to their laziness and lack of motivation." - p. 156
"When we gave them a time frame to be ready by, we showed up at that certain time at the Birthday Palace to begin the mission at hand. Most times than not, we spent the first hour physically waking them up. They would then drag and crawl like a snail to get things ready... So the extra time spent waiting for the IA to get ready just further extended our patrol and complicated relations." - p. 156
"The IA were never motivated. It was hard to inspire them to do anything during a patrol." - p. 157
"I was just praying that I didn't get shot by some overexcited IA soldier." - p. 159
"Pretty much, they were useless standbys." - p. 164
"Poorly clad in their Desert Storm-era uniforms, AK47s, helmet, and a blanket, they were already complaining of carrying too much equipment. They had to have had 100lbs. less weight than the lightest American soldier, yet they declined to help us out by refusing to carry something as light as a shovel. After a few arguments and close calls of beat downs, we had to give in and carry the extra equipment while the Iraqi soldiers only carried their blankets. That set the tone right there for their approval rating." - p. 222
"The IA on the other hand were pretty much left to do as they pleased. Through their eyes, we ran the show. They were just along for the ride. I took care of that by making it my job to throw rocks at any IA soldier I caught sleeping. I perfected my art while we waited at this house." - p. 228
"We were in a secured compound, but I use that word loosely because it was controlled by the Iraqi Army." - p. 258
"Though our building was inside the Iraqi Army compound, feeling safe never existed." - p. 334
Today, the unfortunate news is being passed among the soldiers of Angel Company about the loss of yet another Angel From Hell. For those who read the book will be familiar with the name of Scott MacMillan, who was always a soldier who performed his duties and never caused a disturbance. He was a supreme example of a team player, and for those who had the opportunity to serve with him during his two tours with the company in Iraq know all too well of his constant sarcasm and jokes that made many a miserable day more tolerable. He was only 30 years old and his untimely death comes as a shock to his family and friends, but his legacy will always survive through those who knew him. I find safety in the knowledge that he has many friends in Heaven.
Scott John MacMillan
Died December 17, 2011, in Raymore, Missouri
Now cheaper, longer, and lighter (you know, for all readers that stash a book in your backpack for the train ride to work. I do it too.) The paperback's most obvious change is the cover. I really like this cover as it's a clearer image, and now I don't receive flak from my mother for posing in a photo with my sunglasses on. I don't think she'll understand how sunny it gets and the rays of the sun reflecting off the Iraqi sand can burn ones eyes.
In regards to the content, the paperback offers several additional chapters that were actually written during my second deployment to Iraq in 2009. I wrote them as fresh as they were happening and really spoke from the perspective that I had at the time. In hindsight, sure, I probably would have written a summary of my second deployment for this release, but I had to submit my additional content while I was in Iraq, and I technically had no idea how and when that deployment would be over. So what the reader will get will be my mindset of being recalled, the process an IRR soldier goes through, and plenty of my honest account of my environment and feelings. I read it again the other day and a lot of memories for myself came to the front of my memory banks and it was fun to reflect on how far I've come since then.
Unfortunately, my dedication page was altered to add the name of a fellow and now fallen Angel soldier that I served in Iraq with during the '05-'06 deployment, Sgt. John M. Rogers. He died in Afghanistan on June 27, 2010. Hopefully that's the last name I ever add to this book.
Thank you all again for helping make this book a success. Take care.
- Ryan A.