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CAMP VIRGINIA, Kuwait — These are the guys behind the guys, a deployed support battalion that so far consists of six soldiers.

In the midst of orchestrated chaos at constantly evolving military camps in Kuwait, members of the Special Troops Battalion of the 3rd Corp Support Command based in Wiesbaden, Germany, are focused on continuing the flow of beans and bullets — military parlance for logistics and supply.

“We fight the rear battle,” said Maj. Brian Rogers, commander of the Special Troops Battalion, which supports V Corps Rear.

“We provide the life support for all of the folks behind that wire,” he said, gesturing to the separate set of tents within Camp Virginia ringed by concertina wire and guard posts.

Inside those tents are bustling nerve centers for V Corps headquarters, rows of computers, tactical maps and communications gear. The STB, as it’s called, is responsible for providing everything necessary to allow the V Corps to do its job, Rogers said.

But because of the somewhat chaotic manner in which some of the Germany-based units deployed, only six soldiers of the STB are in Camp Virginia to support the entire Corps Rear — totaling hundreds of troops.

“We’re covering all the major functions that the battalion would usually do, just not to the level of detail that would be done if the rest of us were here,” said Rogers.

The STB handles everything from sanitation to force protection to drawing food, water and uniforms from the military supply chain.

Another STB duty is running the finance office — ensuring that soldiers are getting their regular pay, extra deployment benefits and small cash advances. Equally important is the advancement and promotion system, which does not stop when units are deployed.

“Field boards” for promotions have become fairly common; the only difference is in what uniform the participants wear, soldiers said.

All of the finance and personnel issues are being handled by one soldier: Sgt. Brad Kaplan, a 25-year-old from Winston-Salem, N.C.

“Family separation pay, hazardous duty pay, tax exemptions … especially tax stuff, with April coming up,” Kaplan said, ticking off the list of perks important to soldiers.

“There’s also mail pickup and delivery. That’s a big one.”

In the coming days, Corps Rear will triple in size, officials say. Logistically, that means more than 100 containers of equipment and at least 70 more vehicles to manage.

The soldiers of the STB say that despite the serious nature of the deployment and the severe lack of manpower, it’s almost business as usual.

“We’ve all been involved in so many field exercises, this is second nature,” said Spc. Scott Sevigny, a 24-year-old from Dover, N.H.

Sgt. Peter Coates, a 35-year-old from Baton Rouge, La., handles vehicle maintenance. The biggest challenge so far, he says, is rounding up enough vehicles.

“You kind of have to be a miracle worker in this job,” he said. “Once you get coordinated with the paperwork and the trip tickets, then you go scrounge out the vehicle and execute the mission.”

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