Category Archives: A Haunted Country

Page 30 and 31 Revisions.

I wasn’t entirely happy at how Pages 30 and 31 of A Haunted Country came out, so I made some revisions.  Here they are.

AHC 30th Page WebAHC 31st Page Web


Page 31.


AHC 31st Page Web

These guys would go in back of the dining facility on FOB Marez and get whole crates full of fruit that wasn’t too spoiled for human consumption — just too spoiled to serve to paying customers; then they’d throw it, as hard as they could, at Iraqi cops and soldiers as we slowed down to go through their checkpoints. By that point in the deployment, they were mad at the whole idea of Iraq, and it let them blow off some steam in a harmless way. Meanwhile the Iraqis would run for the peaches because, hey, free peaches. The anger did not translate.

We didn’t go to Kurdistan all that much. When we did go, it was like driving to another country — you half expected to see a K-Mart around the next corner. It was the only place in Iraq that I ever saw an actual gas station, instead of children selling pop bottles full of gasoline on the side of the road. No craters, no blown up buildings. Just a village like the one we’re about to enter.

AHC Page 30.


AHC 30th Page Web

Page 30.  Hard as it is to believe, this is before everyone had a phone that could take video, and so everyone had a separate camera.  Erbil is, of course, the capital of Kurdistan, and is a few hours’ drive from Mosul.

AHC Page 29.


AHC 29th Page Web

Page 29.  IPs are the Iraqi Police, who are about as effective as you might think.

One time, we were driving back from Al Kindi to Mosul and I was in charge of the lead vehicle — one of the few times I had that job.  One of the main jobs of the lead vehicle TC is to call out items of note in the road and the environment in general for the awareness of the vehicles that follow — suspicious-looking vehicles, civilians, suspicious-looking piles of rubble, suspicious-looking light poles &c.  We were driving down the highway and passed an IP checkpoint; one of the policemen was just standing in the middle of the road for no good reason, staring at the moon or whatever.  We swerved around him, but, not wanting him to get hit by any of the vehicles behind me, I called out:

“I P in the road!”

Everyone had a good giggle.

AHC Page 28.


AHC 28th Page Web

Page 28, in which someone else can do the paperwork.

About halfway through inking this, I came up with the alternate idea of having the third quote in a separate panel on the bottom of the page, with an exterior shot emphasizing the size of the building that they’d have to go through to find this guy.  The page was too far along to make that a good use of time, and it doesn’t look terrible as-is: the buildings in the background probably give some sense of where they are and what going through one of them would entail.