Bouhammer Note* This is the 1st part of a multi-part posting by Jon. He was across the street from the bombing and was one of the first medical people to arrive on the scene.*
During the past week I have been attending Focused District Development Classes in Kabul Afghanistan. The classes were at the Ministry of Interior, about 150 meters from the Indian Embassy.
The day started like any other normal day. We were dropped off at MOI in the morning and stood around waiting for class to start. We were told class wasnâ€™t going to start for at least another 30 minutes and it was already about 8:30 am (local). So, I went to the bathroom which is located in the back of the auditorium. When I finished my business, I tried the water faucets like I always do and of course they didnâ€™t have any running water. So I walked out of the bathroom and walked over to the deep freezer in the corner. I opened it and noticed that the ANP have been stealing our water that we have been bringing to class. I then closed the freezer and a big BBBBBOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOMMMMMMMMMMMM went off and shook all the walls and exploded all the windows in the place. I ran saying “HHHOOOLLYYYY SSSHHHIITTT!!!!!”
I ran into the auditorium with the walls still shaking and found the FOBBITs hiding in the corners, while the PMTs ran for their gear and went red on the M4’s. I ran while throwing my M4 into RED status and also throwing on my IBA. While doing this, I was also grabbing my helmet and ran out the door. I was buckling my helmet as I ran through the grass of MOI toward the front gate. You could smell explosives and see a big cloud of smoke in front of us. I then went RED on my M9 pistol and handed my M4 rifle to another soldier who didnâ€™t have his. I told him “here Iâ€™m going to have patients, so youâ€™re going to have to cover me. Plus Iâ€™m a crappy shot anyway”. I felt a rush of energy as we walked out the front gate into what I could only imagine what was on the other side.
MOI- Ministry of Interior
ANP- Afghanistan National Police
FOBBIT- FOBBIT is an derogatory term used by coalition forces in combat to describe base working personnel. It derives from the mixing of the acronym FOB (Forward Operating Base), with Hobbit from J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings universe.
PMT- Police Mentoring Teams
RED status- When a weapon is locked and loaded with a round in the chamber, it is in RED Status.
IBA-Individual Body Armor