reply to post by dooper
You know, the only time I ever felt like a true Special Forces soldier was in Nicaragua November 1985 (OPPS!) Honduras. We had been ‘assisting’
Contra Rebels with ‘training’ when all hell broke loose; one of those put your head between your legs and kiss yourself goodbye moments. Not
having the experience or demeanor of my elder brother dooper, I don’t mind saying I was just a tad bit scared as what was left of a tactical
insertion A team was being chased by three companies of Sandinistas back to the Coco; this as I was in command and that is one lonely job in those
Lets see, it was one of the worst months for rain – sheets of water so thick you could not see through them that went on for ever like some giant
flush of the toilets of heaven – everything was wet, you never were dry because when it was not raining it was like a wet oven; foot after foot I
pushed the men and myself, continuing through some wet, green version of Dante's Inferno, all the while knowing that certain death was approaching;
fear something you could taste and feel even through the rain.
My forward observer was a new American former British SAS CSM who could call an airstrike in the middle of a mortar barrage and a hail of bullets, all
the while drinking tea and keeping his impeccably waxed mustache high and tight. He spoke fourteen languages fluently and ridiculed me relentlessly
about learning English. When questioned as to how he ended up a US Air force Master Sergeant he would merely answer, “Sometimes knowing when to
change sides is the best part of bravery.” His demeanor belayed anymore questions, but his riding crop and ‘Rock of Gibraltar’ attitude and
bearing were indispensible to a lowly Staff Sergeant who had taken over command of what was left of a Special Forces Team.
Now this had been a real moment of fate because I had been the Weapons SGT of the team until the Captain, CWO, Intel SGT and Commo SGT had brought the
farm by being real stupid; bless their damn Yankee hearts, they had left me a real cluster ****. Less than 1000 rds rifle, 3x30 rd Mac 10 45 ACP
clips, 2 Claymore mines, 8xM67 fragmentation grenades, 36x12 gauge 3 Ought Mag Shot gun shells and scavenged Warsaw Pack weapons and side arms. None
of us had had anything to eat but scavenged food for a week and the damn Sandinistas were actually acting like soldiers for once. All of this made for
one hell of an introduction to an A team command.
Now, though assigned to the team as a FO, Master Sergeant McAlison could never enter the chain of command of an A team (he was busy with ‘spook’
stuff), thus his main value was in his absolute dedication to the chain of command; WHEN HE called me “Sir”, all others shut up and followed, even
though I was wishing I could hide. Indeed, it was his “Sir, what are your orders?” that snapped me into doing my job by what I had been trained to
do by repetition a million times.
Having come to a fairly large stream with a rock incrusted hill on the far bank, I realized here would make a fairly good defensible position as the
Sandinistas had closed to under a 1000 yards. Man was it a spooky stream; seemingly below the mud we crossed, it was moving fast and was greatly
swollen due to rain, its other bank sharply rising to a rock cliff that tapered on each side giving natural cover on the flanks. The fields of fire
were clear to almost 200 yards at its front, which was a gift from God considering our location.
Setting up took little time as all were tired of running and ready to face the faceless horror we had fled from for eight days. I assigned one long
range riffle man as a ‘quick reaction’ element to cover both flacks as needed, while I took center stage with “Ma Bell” (My M26 Sniper
Riffle). Then we made coffee (being still wet behind the ears as a ‘Commander’, I brushed off attempts at ‘serving’ me; all damn butter bars
and 90 day wonders need to get a life) and I pulled out my saved special treat, a fruit cocktail and angel food cake C ration cans (MRE’s were just
getting widely issued) I had kept right next to my box of 44 mag ++P rounds (Ruger single action Black Hawk baby, if they are that damn close you want
them DOWN), and said my ‘Hail Mary’s’ and ‘Our Fathers’ in between bites of mixed heaven in the jungle.
Then my one moment of battle command (forgive me dooper and others as I know this is nothing compared to your service), the moment when the whole
jungle exploded; bullets sailing like rain, they came as if someone had tipped them off. Waiting until the largest portion of them had past, I ordered
the claymores set off as they were facing each other from the flanks of the approach; the herding effect made them easy targets and they quickly lost
The fight had lasted less than 2 hours, and it will never make any history books, but victory and survival were sweet; out numbered and out gunned,
but we still kicked ***.
[edit on 6/25/2009 by SGTChas]