"We’re not doing this for a victory parade"

“Do I think the kids running around here have a better future?” Sergeant Trammell said one evening in Camp Karbala, just outside the holy Shiite city of the same name.

“To be honest, I don’t really care,” he said. “As a nation, was it the right thing to do? In the end of the day, when I look back on it, I haven’t lost a soldier in my squad. That’s what’s important to me.”…

“When I go to downtown Baghdad, and I’m stuck in traffic, and I’m not jumping curbs, and going against traffic, I’m driving in traffic like everyone else — and I’m looking to my left and right, and there’s a guy selling fish,” he said at Forward Operating Base Falcon, a base on Baghdad’s outskirts.

“He’s got a fish cart. He’s cooking fish. And there’s a watermelon stand and then there’s an electronic store right next to it, and people are everywhere. And I’m sitting in traffic and I’m going, ‘Man, this is unbelievable.’ That’s a victory parade for me.”