Robert Fisk: They came, they saw, and were conquered
Published 20/08/2010 | 05:00
WHEN you invade someone else's country, there has to be a first soldier -- just as there has to be a last. The first man in front of the first unit of the first column of the invading American army to reach Fardous Square in the centre of Baghdad in 2003 was Corporal David Breeze of the 3rd Battalion, Fourth Marine Regiment.
For that reason, of course, he pointed out to me that he wasn't a soldier at all. Marines are not soldiers. They are Marines. But he hadn't talked to his mom for two months and so -- equally inevitably -- I offered him my satellite phone to call his home in Michigan. Every journalist knows you'll get a good story if you lend your phone to a soldier in a war.
"Hi, you guys," Corporal Breeze bellowed. "I'm in Baghdad. I'm ringing to say hi! I love you. I'm doing fine. I love you guys. The war will be over in a few days. I'll see you soon."