Commemorative T-walls can't come home


T-walls like the one painted out in front of the 103rd Expeditionary Sustainment Command at Joint Base Balad, Iraq can't clear customs and must stay in Iraq. (Chris Maddaloni/Army Times)

JOINT BASE BALAD, Iraq — Sorry, but all those T-walls that soldiers have spent countless hours decorating with unit designs can’t come home from Iraq, said Brig. Gen. Mark Corson, commander of the 103rd Expeditionary Sustainment Command.

The T-walls must stay here because of the dirt and sand that has built up on the concrete structures, some of which have stood in Iraq for eight years.

“They won’t clear customs so they have to stay,” Corson said.

U.S. and Iraqi soldiers and contractors have already started the massive task of taking down the thousands upon thousands of T-walls that line roads and buildings at bases across Iraq.

Many soldiers barely recognize the Green Zone — or what’s now being called the International Zone, or the Amber Zone — in Baghdad because Iraqi soldiers have been hard at work taking down the T-walls in preparation for the Arab Summit.

“It’s amazing but this place actually looks a lot better. You can see the sidewalks and green space around here,” said 1st Lt. Casey Seckel, a medical officer at FOB Prosperity in the International Zone.


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  1. Hey, thats not a “t” wall. A “t” wall has a base about 6 to 8 feet wide with the wall portion is set in the middle. I have no idea what the wall in the picture is and I would worry about it tipping over, something a real “t” wall wouldn’t do.

  2. Joshua Polaschek on

    That’s my wall! lol. I am with the 103D ESC here in Iraq.
    Don’t know if anyone will read this, doesn’t matter but I wanted to show my appreciation for you putting this wall on your site. It only took a couple of weeks to finish after the thing was all plotted out.
    Correction-it’s actually BG Corson, not Corlson.
    Tip- If any unit out there wishes they could take their wall home with them, consider having a “FatHead”(wall decal) or a Banner/Tarp type thing made of the wall. There are numerous companies out there that will use a picture and create what you like. I have seen many beautifully painted walls in this country and ya hate to see them go to waste.
    Anyway, Thank you and have a nice day.

  3. For anyone who might have read this article, the wall that is featured on the front of this was painted by my son, Joshua A Polaschek. He is an amazing artists and loves his country. He was very honored to be able to be part of that project. We are very proud of him and all the men and women who protect us back here in the states. Thank you for allowing us our freedom!

  4. If their dirty then find a way to clean them and then get them cleared through customs. Our troops spent too much time and way too much effort to have them destroyed. They should be saved as the pieces of history they are.

  5. I like the FatHead idea. Very cool. To have a painting completed in another country is a write of passage for military units

  6. Please come home our brave Military personnel, safe. God bless them all! Leave these beautiful pieces of art so THEY will be remembered for their sacrifices and bravery (our Soldiers) and their humanitarianism! These works should be forever in a museum, where they are, to tell our Soldier’s stories the way THEY see/saw it to commemorate their gallant efforts (AND everyone’s above that is in the military). God bless them all! We will not forget you SOLDIERS!

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