Almost a year later, I resume
Several of you have asked me why I haven't written in so long. There is no great answer but I have decided that now is the time. I am writing from the jungles North of Dhaka, Bangladesh, as part of an exercise, "Shanti Doot" which is Bangla for "Ambassador of Peace." Specifically, I am currently in the Bangladesh Institute for Peace Support Operation Training or BIPSOT. Assigned as part of a seven member contingent from the Oregon National Guard that will serve as the command and control element for Exercise Shanti Doot, a UN Peacekeepers course designed to certify platoons from 12 nations in the tactics and procedures they will use in regional peacekeeping operations around the globe. Journeying from Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, India, Malaysia, Mongolia, Nepal, Sri Lanka, South Korea, the United States and Tonga, platoons from these nations will run through several lanes run by UN certified trainers.
This is a wonderful experience already. We have only been in country for less than a week and I have already seen the smiles of school children through the windows of their school buses, the craftsmanship of carvers and the love of families sharing love despite hardship.
The people of Bangladesh are so accomodating and to be deployed as part of this extraordinary opportunity is a once in a lifetime event. It is an honor to be here and I will write more as available.