Posted by: TheAuthor | 26/04/2011

Longest Day Part 3

Nothing happened. The Taliban fighter had a ‘dead man’s click’. At the very same moment the fighter had pulled his trigger, so did the point man from William’s section. In a matter of seconds, an enemy combatant had revealed himself and been removed from the battlefield.

The section commander ordered them all back towards the compound. They then attempted to break out straight ahead of the compound, rather than to the front right. A firing point a mere 60 meters away was being used and needed to be neutralised. An engineer joined the intrepid men within William’s section and they proceeded to move forward, down a narrow walk way towards the enemy. The assault pairing broke in without contact with the opposing forces, however once in the smaller compound the received incoming fire–perhaps to prevent them from leaving. “Get explosives on that roof guys, bring it down” the section commander told the engineers “We will cover you”. The engineers stood atop a barrel to reach the roof and instantly took a heavy weight of fire, including RPG’s. They flopped to the ground “Was that at us!?” they shouted, “No mate, just at us” commented William deceptively “keep going”. The next attempt was a success and the men fell back to the rest of the embattled platoon before blowing the roof. Shortly afterwards, the area was again being used to pin the platoon into the building. A 500lb bomb was to be dropped on the target. William, along with the others, waited expectantly with fingers in ears.

BOOOOOM, the bomb landed with a deafening thunder and shook the ground. William was a little taken back, but again his section was sent out to attempt to break the siege (that had now been ongoing for the past six or so hours) by dominating the area around the bomb blast. Wearily the men stood up, including William’s heat casualty from before, bolstering the man power. They jogged out, under cover from the men manning the roof of the compound.

William led the move into the area. A doorway opened towards the direction of the enemy, rubble raised the level of the ground so that when atop you could be seen from the grassy area beyond the compound–therefore by the enemy as well. William pushed his men out over the rubble and to the next wall. “This is your arc, keep alert” William directed each and every man providing security. “William, on me!” shouted the Boss, from the compound entrance. William looked up, nodded and moved towards his Boss.

Woooosh, boooom! An RPG flew in as William moved and impacted into the wall the other side of the man he left behind to cover, as he ran rounds impacted millimeters away into the walls either side of him. Breathing heavily, he shouted back “You alright mate, you ok?”. No answer, all he could see was dust. Billowing around everything, seemingly taking forever to settle. “You alive Stab?” he repeated. “Just about” came a rapid and loud reply. “Let’s get out of here” said the Boss, “7 platoon have broken through to our rear and we can ex-filtrate the area”. William pulled his men back and they all prepared to move.

Woooosh! An RPG flew past William and to the door of the platoons compound. Detonating beside the Pl. Sgt. In a shower of dust and debris, he emerged unscathed apart from minor shrapnel wounds to his face. miraculously, as the only combat casualty of the past 7 hours the Pl. Sgt. orchestrated the platoon in their move out of the compound. No further rounds were fired on the move out, William let out an audible sigh of relief.

It was over, for now.

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