A few shots of the city through PVS-14 night vision goggles:
Here are a few through the thermal sight on a Remote Weapon System (RWS) mounted to the stop of a Stryker.
Myself and an Iraqi soldier I trained and worked with walking through a remote village. Carrying a M4 with 10.5 inch barrel, LA-5, EO Tech reflex sight, magpul stock, pentagon tactical flashlight (before they got sued out of business by Surefire), and pmag.
This was January or February as I recall. It was pretty hot during the day but once that sun went down it was absolutely freezing. I took these pictures during the course of a five day reconnaissance patrol through a area not frequented by coalition troops.
I was an attachment to this unit for the patrol. As a Special Forces adviser I had five Iraqi soldiers with me who were there to help out with local engagements, meet and greets, and so forth. I have a lot of respect for these units who spent most of their deployment out in the desert like this. It isn’t easy living out of humvee day in and day out.
This was a nice CZ75 pistol a contractor doing some construction for us had. I liked it enough that I was going to try and buy or trade something for it until I realized that he wanted to charge me enough that I could just buy myself a brand new one back in the US.
This is a AK rifle grenade that I was looking at in a improvised Iraqi arms room. It is fired from the barrel of the AK-47 with a blank round that is provided with the grenade. The pin in the nose is a safety.
This is a Gorjunov WW2 era Soviet machine gun. It fired the same 7.62x54mm Rimmed ammo as the PKM. I took this picture before I attempted to disassemble the thing. Ultimately an Iraqi NCO (pictured below) showed me how it was done. This particular rifle has been retrofitted with a bizarre flash suppressor (?) for some reason.
Check out this Chimera of a rifle. It was home made, constructed by the soldier holding it in his home with a mish-mash of weapons components. It features a AK receiver fitted with a home made M16 style charging handle, a PKM barrel, a improvised wooden stock, a Browning Hi-Power pistol grip, and finally a crappy BB gun scope. This thing actually fired, I saw it with my own eyes, from a safe distance of course.
Here is another shot of the rifle with it’s owner. You can tell he is a gear nut as well as being a gun nut. We had a lot in common. Note the flash bangs we gave him, the flare gun on his left side, and home made unit insignia on his chest.
Duhok is surrounded by mountains like this which is part of the reason why the Turks, Iranians, and Iraqis have never really been able to “pacify” the kurds. Security is tight in Kurdistan, they certainly police they’re own.
As I recall I took this picture after we had lunch. It was some of the worst pizza I have ever been party to. I recall walking into a bathroom to wash my hands before we ate and a orderly asked me in broken English, “Are you Special Force?!?” Kids in town asked me if I worked with KDP (Kurdish Militia) so OPSEC is pretty much joke in this part of the world.