By Mr. Scott D Harris (USACE)November 29, 2009
Employees of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Gulf Region District celebrated Thanksgiving at Camp Wolfe on the Victory Base near Baghdad, Iraq. On the menu was roasted pig, with a long table full of homemade side dishes and desserts.
While the Corps of Engineers Gulf Region Division recently became the first division to inactivate as U.S. forces in Iraq are reduced, a newly activated Transatlantic Division in Winchester, Va., oversees two districts still working on Iraq reconstruction. Along with active-duty Army leaders, most members of the workforce are civilian volunteers from districts and other USACE locations across the country.
The Corps of Engineers in Iraq has worked on more than 5,500 projects worth more than $10 billion since 2004. The current focus is on reconstruction: to rebuild critical infrastructure to provide essential utility services, and to build the community with smaller, vital projects providing facilities for healthcare, transportation and education.
Holiday celebrations like this one help make the time in Iraq pass quickly - and the results of those projects make the work meaningful.