Posted by: TheAuthor | 21/04/2011

Longest Day Part 2

Word was spread about the enemies intentions to kill or capture the platoon, now trapped in the compound and embattled in a fierce contest to keep the Taliban at bay.

It was hot, midday and water was running low in the compound. There was no well to retrieve water from and the shade had reduced to the width of a whisker, due to the sun placing itself directly above the beleaguered platoon. Sweat dripped down every man’s face, their shirts matted and soaked to their backs and mouths as dry as dust.William edged over to his men to ensure they used their water sparingly and used only enough ammunition to keep the Taliban in the wood line a few dozen meters away.

The other two platoons knew about their encircled companions, but were pinned in their locations and unable to break through the cordon, placed by the ferocious Taliban, to reach them. The consequence of this ment that William’s platoon would run out of all provisions before long. They all knew this, there was no way to resupply. More unsettling, the enemy fighters knew this as well.

“William, on me!” came a cry from the platoon sergeant (Pl. Sgt.), William raced across the sunlit compound. “He is yours, look after him”. William looked to the only shade around, one of his men had dropped from heat exhaustion. “it’s OK mate, lets just remove your helmet and body armour to help you cool down”. With this the incoherent soldier was stripped down and propped in as much shade as possible and treated from there. William stood by, providing an oatmeal biscuit for him to eat as none of them had eaten for at least 8 hours by this point, to ensure the treatment of one of his men was appropriate because there was no medic within the platoon. “We need a way out” the Pl. Sgt. motioned to the Boss, “I suggest a mouse-hole charge on the rear wall, the only side we aren’t fighting from but can’t get out” “Let’s get it in place, we may need to use it if things deteriorate in here” replied the Platoon commander. William noted the significance of this, there was no way to extract his casualty or get supplies of any kind in. “Right” declared the Boss, “2 section will attempt to break out of this compound, head to the right as you leave the doorway and we will try to follow”.

As William’s section left the compound, the incoming small arms fire began to drop. The section edged into the open area outside the compound, the 6 men tentatively moving forward to possible firing points that were accessed via narrow walkways bordered by high mud walls that gave William and his friends the sense of entrapment. Dog legging single file, away from the compound, they stepped around a corner. Just then a man vaulted over the wall directly in front of the point man of William’s section, he aimed a loaded RPG at the collection of soldiers and went to pull the trigger…


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