Sara Fleming lives in Tucson with her amazing husband, the happiest dog in the world, and two spoiled cats. In her free time, she enjoys riding bikes with her cycling group, also known as the Rogues, and hiking and traveling with her husband.
The Army You Have: Operation Iraqi Freedom — A Military Intelligence Soldier’s Perspective
Inspired by hometown hero and patriot spy Nathan Hale, who gave his life for the cause of independence during the Revolutionary War, Sara Fleming grows up wanting to serve her country. Joining the US Army Reserves as a military intelligence soldier seems to be a good way to fulfill this goal—and a means to pay off her student loans. When Sara and her new Army Reserve unit are deployed to Kuwait and then to Iraq during the first year of Operation Iraqi Freedom, she finds that serving in a war zone is not the heroic dream she imagined as a child.
Ill-equipped and untrained for the conditions in the Middle East, Fleming and her unit are mostly shunned by their active-duty counterparts in Kuwait. They wait for a mission assignment with almost nothing to occupy their time and little to no direction from leadership.
When her unit is sent to Iraq, they are put in extremely dangerous situations without proper equipment, safety measures, or logical protocol. For over a year Fleming goes from one chaotic situation to another, losing friends to deadly attacks and realizing that every day her team spends in Iraq could be their last.
Told from a woman soldier’s perspective, The Army You Have brings readers into the confusing and frustrating inner struggle of not believing in the war you are asked to fight. Through her experience, Fleming finds healing through the embattled comradeship of her fellow soldiers, a new emboldened strength of character, and a greater appreciation for life, friendships, and family.