Third ID Assistant Division Commander Speaks - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

07/28/03

Third ID Assistant Division Commander Speaks

Plenty of our troops, especially Third Infantry Division soldiers, aren't home yet. Some left nearly a year ago for the Middle East and lead the charge to, and through, Baghdad. WTOC had a chance to talk with assistant division commander Brig. Gen. Bill Weber about a very dangerous postwar Iraq.

"Everyone is at risk every day," he told us. "You see and hear about the improvised explosive devices they're using along routes, lobbing grenades off of bridges at our convoys. RPG attacks, machine gun attacks. It's quite dangerous all over the country."

This is not quite what they expected in a postwar Iraq that's not quite post-Saddam.

"Our expectations changed given the threat after the war and the assumptions that were made about the conditions that might exist after the war didn't prove to be valid," Brig. Gen. Weber said. "So when those assumptions change, the decisions that are made change based on those assumptions have to change."

Since things change, the Third ID is still in country, sparking some pretty emotional controversy both on the home front and on the front lines.

"It's okay. Morale is okay," the brigadier general told us. "When I walked around and talked to soldiers, clearly there was some disappointment and some frustrations with the changes when we would redeploy home. But given that our soldiers have a task and purpose and mission to do, we transition pretty quickly into feeling sorry for ourselves in some cases to getting on with the job."

Weber is leaving Fort Stewart for a new position in Washington.

Reported by: Mike Manhatton, mmanhatton@wtoc.com

 

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