May 31, 2004 — Next month, the Bush administration says it will establish a sovereign government in Iraq. Despite the transition, U.S. troops are likely to remain in the country for along time. National Guard troops from northern New York are hunkered down near a vast Army base in the Sunni Triangle. In his latest audio diary, Major Eric Olsen, a chaplain from Saranac Lake, describes the effort to settle in and establish a daily routine, while also dealing with the tension of daily attacks. This installment was recorded two weeks ago and none of the casualities mention in Major Olsen's diary occurred recently.