Thursday, August 03, 2006

Leschi Town

I'm healthy. Hurray.

Leschi Town is the most elaborate MOUT (military operations in urban terrain) site I've ever seen. It looks like a normal town. The buildings are painted, have real doors and not flimsy pieces of plywood, there's actually bits of furniture in buildings, LIGHTS, I could go on forever. It seriously looks like a small town, streets with NAMES and SIGNS, etc etc etc.

I don't have much time, because right now we're working on getting everything taken care of, the post mission details, dealing with extra ammo and empty shell casings, cleaning everything, and so on. Here's a brief narrative.

The entire company is out in force. Some had bedded down in a building well before the mission even kicked off. Each platoon had their own job, and the specifics I'm not going into, because we all know how paranoid I am of catching hell for some OPSEC violation or another. In fact, I'll limit this STRICTLY to my own first person experience. To be honest, I wish I knew more of what went on, to see the bigger picture, but we can't have it that way, so oh well.

I climb into the stryker with the team I'm temporarily assigned to. A few guys have been shuffled around, and I'm one of them. With the addition of me, we're a three man fire team, which isn't ideal, at all. We wait until the time to roll out comes around. The stryker grinds into motion and we all sit in silence, rocking around with the turns, shifts, and bumps of the vehicle.

You can see the tips of trees passing overhead through the open hatches, but visibility is never that great in a stryker. Pretty soon, the tops of buildings are passing by as well. I take the caps off of my optic and turn the little red dot on. I chamber a round in my M4. We take a couple more turns. Now I can hear automatic fire, and lots of it. 240Bravos rocking the way God intended, and our Kiowa helicopter is overhead, also doing their part to make the enemy's life hell.

We reach our spot and the ramp drops. We rush out. The world is very bright compared to the dimmer interior of the stryker, and your eyes attempt to adjust as brightly lit gravel passes you, crunching underfoot. We jump a gate and keep running to our target building. I'm looking at the windows for any silhouette of someone who isn't our friend, with the intention of giving him some 5.56 mm love. We reach the door and burst into the room. A SAW and two M4s all lighting up at the same time, all of them oriented on one enemy in the center of the room. I was the third guy to enter, and I had put four shots on him, god knows how many times the other two had fired at him. With things going that fast, its not like you could count, or process that, or even care for that matter.

The building, an office, is now secure. Wall lockers and overturned desks block the windows that overlook the buildings we need to get aggressive with. We kick and throw the obstacles out of our way, making all sorts of noise in the chaos that's engulfing the entire block. The whole area was alive with organized pandemonium. Now we're unloading rounds out the windows at the next buildings, all the while other members of the company are completing their objectives like clockwork. When the shooting finally stops, its time to search the building for intelligence or munitions.

To be continued...

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