Master Sergeant Marc Youngquist has served for over 40 years in the military and law enforcement. Over those years, he has met many unsung American heroes. These are men and women who have served our country with limited resources and support while being separated from friends and loved ones for months at a time, often while living in hostile environments. When they return home, these soldiers do their best to pick up where they left off, resuming their lives, never sharing the details of their heroic acts because “it’s all part of the job.” Even close friends and (especially) their families never hear about the danger they were in or the lives they impacted, despite the heroism of their acts.
In The 143rd in Iraq, Youngquist provides a firsthand account of a Connecticut National Guard Military Police Company’s attempt to recruit, train and prepare an Iraqi Police Force in 2003-2004, and the many dangers they faced as a result. From training for desert conditions in the dead of winter without the appropriate gear to driving through the night trying to find Baghdad with pieces of a map puzzle and finally to entering war zones without an adequate supply of soldiers, weapons or ammo, Youngquist shares how the 143rd Military Police Company did what they could, in spite of it all.
If you have ever wondered what it means when politician’s use the term “boots on the ground,” this military history of just one company’s experiences will provide you with an eye-opening narrative, putting you in the thick of the action with these brave men and women.
Whether you’re interested in military history, American heroes, the Middle East in general or the Iraq war history specifically, or you simply enjoy a riveting story of bravery and dedication, The 143rd in Iraq is sure to please.
As a former Commander of the 143rd MP Company (1997-1999), this bare knuckle blow-by-blow account of how my former soldiers performed so magnificently in Iraq made me proud, made me laugh, and even made me cry. It kept me on the edge of my seat, wanting to read the next page, and wishing I were there with them every step of the way. Knowing MSG (retired) Youngquist as I do, this detailed and, at times, disturbing, account of the obstacles the 143rd MP Company faced is the gritty truth as only a soldier’s NCO would tell it. To the soldiers of the 143rd: Well done and welcome home. I am grateful for this chronicle of your service, and proud of each and every one of you! -Colonel (Ret.) Stephan Picard Operation Iraqi Freedom Veteran
MSG Younquist has again provided invaluable service to our nation with this book. His ability to relate personnel, equipment and training to mission requirements makes “The 143rd in Iraq” a must read for military professionals and civilian leaders alike. MSG Younquist’s real life experiences accurately describe the challenges leaders face today. I wish I had had this book when I was teaching in ROTC. -Major Robert E. Henry Judge Advocate, United States Army Reserve Instructor, Command and General Staff College Officer Course
When America goes to war, she sends her serving sons and daughters into harm’s way for the protection of her people and the security of the nation. In doing so, she sends the strongest of the faithful, her volunteers, the people who have the hearts of lions, who leave their homes and family for the greater good of us all. And when America goes to war, she calls and asks, “Who will go?” Marc Youngquist, a former marine and serving National Guard trooper put up his hand and said, “I will”. Marc has written of his Connecticut Military Police National Guard unit as they deployed and saw action in Iraq in 2003 and 2004. His is a telling story that readers rarely see—the gritty clear-eyed truth that includes the chaos of organization, the apathy of command staff, the lack of critical need-to-have equipment, and the sometimes broken-down/obsolete vehicles, weapons, communications, adverse weather and health threats—even clothing necessary to do the job. Marc writes of this and more, not in complaint or anger, but as it is and what he and his fellow MP Unit still accomplished in an active and always dangerous combat zone. Every American owes a measure of gratitude and respect for our military. Every American should read Marc Youngquist’s account of our citizen soldiers and their missions—not only overcoming the challenge of a sometimes faceless enemy that uses buried and roadside car bombs, snipers, and guerilla warfare tactics to kill Americans, but how they prevailed and met the call of duty, “In Spite of It All.” -Bruce W. Tully Special Agent In Charge (Ret.) Senior Foreign Service Diplomatic Security Service United States Department of State
"The 143rd in Iraq is worthwhile reading for anyone interested in the experience of war." A.A. Nofi Review Editor
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