View Full Version : Friend deploying to Afghanistan soon... what to get?

12-20-2008, 2:21 PM
Alright, my buddy, a corpsman attached to a Marine unit is deploying overseas early next year. I want to buy him something that would be useful to him. What do you guys recommend?

12-20-2008, 2:24 PM
Ask him what he needs - From the look of things - They get deployed with shortage of equipment quite often -

Gator Monroe
12-20-2008, 2:25 PM
Give him video games & porno vIDEO GAMES and have him bring back you back AK/AKM furniture and 1960's USGI Aluminium M16A1 mags by Simmonds & Adventureline & Colt.

12-20-2008, 3:09 PM
A GOOD knife with a 6, 6.5 inch blade. A case of baby wipes. Individual drink packets (gator, country time, etc.).

12-20-2008, 3:09 PM
I second a good solid knife

12-20-2008, 3:33 PM
i 2nd pron... a lot of pron... wish him well for me!

12-20-2008, 3:45 PM
Laptop,cell phone/sat phone,ipod,phone cards,oakleys,gloves,boresnakes,underarmor/polartec layers, binos, spotter/tripod. Get a good address or email from him. They leave with very little but that makes the trip easier on lugging ****. Once he gets there you can send more and he will let you know what he needs.

12-21-2008, 1:12 AM
I appreciate all of the responses. My friend Danny is a really good guy and I want to make sure he has everything he needs for his trip to the sandbox. I will probably give him some small necessities at first and ask him what he needs once he's overseas.

12-21-2008, 5:59 AM
My oldest son has spent the last 10yrs in the 2nd Ranger Btln, every deployment he gets a new Emerson or Benchmade folding Tanto blade. I think I'm up to 14+ as of last count...

Manic Moran
12-21-2008, 10:26 AM
This is what I emailed to answer the same question a week ago to someone else.


> Nicholas - Terry's son Chris will we deploying to Afghanistan with the
> Nevada Guard. He is looking for Christmas present ideas. Thanks for
> any suggestions.
> Rick

A year's worth of razor blades? Laptop computer, if he doesn't have one, preferably with some way of recording video to send home (Either internal cam, or USB connection to his digital camera). Handheld Garmin/Magellan GPS. A simple E-Trex will do the job, you can never have too many of them out in the field.

Just how 'gucci' does he want to get? For example, if he's in Nevada and going to be playing Infantry, he might want to consider Lancer L5 or P-MAG magazines (GI stuff ain't bad, but there's some reassurance in reliability), or a flip-to-side-magnifier for the issued Aimpoint sight. I'll probably use my Iraq-era EOTech Holosight, and buy an FTSM for it for myself this time around.

A 5.56mm/.223 boresnake is cheap and handy if he doesn't have one, pretty much a socking stuffer. I'm bringing my own rifle and pistol cleaning kits with me: The Army stuff isn't bad (they issue Otis kits in addition to the little green things), but I like making things easy for myself and have my own pick-and-pull set in a tupperware container. If he doesn't have a good utility knife (Gerber, Leatherman), this needs rectifying. (I have two, one permanently on my web gear, the other for non-tactical use). A good flashlight, if for some reason he doesn't have one already. (Be careful of ones like SureFires. They're fantastic lights, but the batteries drain very quickly, and they're not usually AAs.)

Any of the counterinsurgency books. "How to eat soup with a knife", or "The Other Side of the Mountain" (Possibly now known as "Afghan Guerilla Warfare, in the words of the Mujahadeen," it's the companion book to "The Bear Went Over the Mountain") would be two good ones. There are plenty out there.
Speaking of books, one of our troopers showed up recently with a Kindle e- reader which seemed like a good idea. If he's the voracious reading type, he can buy e-books, download them with the laptop, and read them on the Kindle. Books take a lot of space and weight in your bag, digits are much smaller and lighter.

Power socket adapters. Preferably one of those travel kits which will work anywhere. The sockets in Iraq were the UK-style rectangular three-pins, but I have no idea what's used in Afghanistan.

Subscription to his favourite magazines. Send them to him as part of the care packages. Use caution if his favourite magazines include Playboy.

Vacuum flask type thing, with lid. He'll want it in the winter. It gets bloody cold there. I have a 16" metal one the Army gave me in Iraq with a large handle and a sling, very handy.

We've told our guys to hold off on buying any tactical field gear like thigh holsters or three-point-rifle slings. Most of the (old) field gear he currently has issued to him will be replaced when we get to Indiana.

That's about it off the top of my head. I was rather surprised at how little I needed in Iraq: What was not issued to me but needed on a daily basis could be purchased locally with little trouble. Except for that one time we ran out of coffee and couldn't find any on the base to buy. Otherwise, I most of the money I spend there was on buying DVDs and computer games to pass the time.


12-21-2008, 12:51 PM
As I understand, (from my recliner), possession of porn, even tame stuff like Playboy will get you an Article 15.

12-21-2008, 2:47 PM
Don't they still do contraband in the military? Or is that only in boot camp?

Manic Moran
12-21-2008, 5:44 PM
General Order #1.

No personal weapons. No porn. No booze. No fun.


lcpl. huynh
12-22-2008, 5:44 AM
don't get him tactical gear, the stuff they issue us is more than satisfactory, don't let him make the mistake of being a gear queer like one of my marines, most if not all of it will end up in the bottom of his seabag. Warming layers are also issued to us. Trust me, I have a whole seabag of issued gear that I have never touched. All I've ever taken out on missions was my PPE, and maybe an extra warming layer or two.

12-24-2008, 8:54 PM
My favorites were a cross for my dog tags, and a small Bible. Receiving those from a friend will mean more. In AFG he can get everything else in theater.
As far as gear goes it boils down to personal preference. I was always well supplied. I second the vote for a Benchmade if he isn't issued one. Oh and daily reminders to wear his PPE all the time, every time.

12-24-2008, 9:37 PM
I got my buddies a good fix blade (Strider) and a good light (Surefire).

Someone mention not to get a Surefire and I politely disagree.

If you want to get your friend a tool, make sure it's a good one.

Many GIs, have access to CR123 batteries which power the Surefires. If not, you can get a a box for him also.

12-25-2008, 10:47 AM
You mentioned that he was a Doc with a Marine Corps unit. His needs and desires will vary with his preference as well as the type of unit that he is attached to. Another factor is what his unit will be doing in theater. I say this because if he is with a Marine artillery unit, they have been deploying without tubes and being deployed as infantry. This will limit the type of gear that he will want to carry.
Not only that, but as a Devil Doc, his Jarheads will take care of him as well!