" TALLIL, Iraq—On the edge of the Sumerian city of Ur in ancient Mesopotamia, Maj. Michael Homer, from South Indianapolis serves in Iraq. The Great Ziggurat, a 4000 year pyramid like structure can be seen from his station, Logistical Support Area (LSA) Adder.
Homer, 42, was part of the 38th Infantry Division of the Indiana National Guard. He worked as G-3, Deputy of operations and training. Homer volunteered for this deployment.
In Iraq now, Homer works as the S-2—an intelligence officer.
“We work to inform the command of enemy activities and intent, and best safeguard our troops from insurgents,” he said. He also worked as an intelligence officer in Panama, Korea, and England.
Homer's work involves lots of computers and meetings. It specializes in convoy security for the entire country of Iraq. He helps analyze the attacks on the troops traveling on Main Supply Routes (MSR) and Alternative Supply Routes (ASR) day and night to better predict and protect them from attacks.
Working ten to twelve hour days everyday, Homer keeps busy with his job. He also spends time in the gym.
“There isn't a whole lot do here,” he said. He reads books his fiance mails him. In October, Homer will be getting married to Abigail Harmon.
“It's a long distance relationship,” he said. “I get to email and call her everyday.”
Although Homer is a soldier and enjoys that aspect of his job, he doesn't care much for Iraq. Being in the war makes him appreciate the world back home.
“It's nice to have something to look forward too,” he said, in regards to getting back to his soon to be wife.
“I enjoy the tax free part,” he said. Soldiers have federal tax exemptions when serving a year long tour in the war.
No stranger to desert war, Homer remembers the first trip he made to the middle East.
“It's considerably different than Desert Storm,” he said. “It was more a full blown war—mechanized. This is all insurgent conflicts.”
The people fighting the US now have no uniforms or insignia. They operate on a hit and run basis.
This is the last war for Homer. He is retiring when he returns.
“I started here as a Lieutenant and will end here as a Major,” he said.