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War In Iraq Overshadowing News In War On Terror

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FORT BRAGG, N.C. — There is no question that the war with Iraq is the big story, but it was not long ago that the War on Terrorism in Afghanistan dominated the news.

Soldiers and their families have a lot to say about the shift in attention while battles continue on both fronts.

For days, Operation Iraqi Freedom has been the lead story on TV newscasts and has dominated the front page of newspapers and Web sites. News from Afghanistan is hard to find.

"It's not forgotten, just put aside," said Pfc. Gable Darbonne, a soldier at Fort Bragg.

That is discouraging for veterans of the War on Terrorism.

Darbonne just returned from Afghanistan and said the dangers there are just as real.

"People say there's more of a threat in Iraq than Afghanistan. I think war is the same -- the threat of war is the same," he said.

Janet Cartwright's husband has been in Afghanistan for eight months.

"There are mines everywhere. They are still clearing out caves, still sweeping villages. It's still very dangerous and [the attention] shouldn't be taken away from them in Afghanistan," she said.

With more troops in Iraq, Cartwright understands why those deployed in Operation Iraqi Freedom are getting more attention.

Even with that understanding, she said it is no longer easy for her to follow what is going on with her husband and the the hundreds of other local soldiers still fighting terror.

"The country can't forget them yet -- not yet," Cartwright said.

An 82nd Airborne Division spokesperson said just about all of the national media pulled out of Afghanistan about a month ago, repositioning for the war with Iraq.


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