Fishin' Accomplished

He eluded U.S. forces much longer than Saddam Hussein, but this 13-pound carp was finally brought to justice recently as part of Operation Catch Fish, on the grounds of Camp Slayer in Baghdad.

Corporal Jason Spakman took first prize in the fishing competition with this beauty, caught in one of Saddam's man-made lakes at the Al Faw Palace Complex, which was formerly used by Baath Party big shots. The building in the background is part of the Victory Over America Palace, which was unfinished due to several pesky U.S. bombs in 2003. From Julie Dermansky's blog:

The man-made lakes around the palace complex are stocked with bass and carp. Soldiers fish at various spots on the base. This year's "Operation Catch Fish" was the second annual fishing competition in Baghdad. Jason recieved a 26 inch flat screen TV as his prize. This year 450 troops participated in the event, up from 250 the first year. The organizers plan to bring another 250 poles next year despite talk of a draw down of troops.

More photos here.

Fishin' Accomplished

And after a day of fishing, a little golf. Lt. William Thomas from Texas launching a few from the JVB hotel. We all remember the JVB Hotel, right?

Dermansky is a New York photojournalist embedded with various U.S. military units in Iraq. Her next assignment: Prowling the border between Iraq and Iran, which should be a barrel of laughs.

Baghdad's Flintstone Village [Julie Dermanky's Blog]
Julie Dermansky Main Site