don’t worry BUT memento mori
don’t worry BUT memento mori
потрясающие рыжие волосы,уоо
Sorry I’m not sorry I found male on male porn extremely arousing
- No music tonight?
- You said there was music.
- We got a jukebox.
- That’ll work.
- Y’all really cousins?
totaly ship them
Some of the history of First Recon’s Bravo Two during its second deployment to Iraq in 2004 deserves to be told. Bravo Two returned with several of the original Humvees they had driven to Baghdad a year earlier, including Colbert’s beloved Team One vehicle.
Team One was now commanded by Eric Kocher (who had previously ) served under Captain America in Bravo Three). None of the personnel in Team One carried over from Colbert’s day. There was no reporter. What had been my seat on the right side of the vehicle was now occupied by Corporal Eddie Wright (no relation to me).
Team Three still had Stinetorf on the Humvee’s .50 cal. The vehicle’s previous driver, Baptista, now was the team leader. The team now included “Q-tip” Stafford, who formerly rode on Fick’s truck, and Lilley, previously Espera’s driver. “Manimal” Jacks was now the driver of the fourth Humvee in the platoon.
As in 2003, Bravo Two was again used to drive through suspected ambush areas. This time, they were deployed to Falluja. On April 7, 2004, Bravo Two was sent on a highway toward a known ambush point. Similar as this was to the previous year’s missions, there were variations. Notably, the enemy ambushers had acquired better marksmanship skills than the previous generation. The first volleys of RPGs they fired did not fly wildly over the vehicles as they had in 2003. One RPG scored a direct hit on Colbert’s former Humvee. It detonated in the arms of Corporal Wright, blowing off his hands and tearing open his leg by his femoral artery. It blew off so much of the flesh from Kocher’s right arm, and shattered his bones from his elbow to the tip of his trigger finger. Kocher was also rendered deaf in one ear from the blast. The vehicle’s turret gunner was knocked out, bleeding from his legs. All the Marines in the vehicle had penny-sized pieces of shrapnel studding their faces and other areas of exposed flesh.
Corporal Wright had the worst injuries. There was very little bleeding from his arms, because the stumps had been cauterized the blast. The main problem was his severed femoral artery. Every time his heart beat it looked like, as he later told me, “about a half glass of Coca Cola was pouring out” from the hole in his leg. With no hands, all he could do was look on helplessly as hip life drained out.
Wright’s fellow Marines, injured and in shock, initially were of little help. Lance Corporal Aaron Mazon, seated beside him, applied a tourniquet to his leg, but it continued to bleed. Kocher, after tourniquet his right arm with a bungee cord, nearly passed out then he turned to check on Wright. “All I could see was meat all over the back of the Humvee,” he later told to me. Kocher believes it was Wright’s “retarded” humor that pulled his mind back from the brink and helped him focus. Wright nodded to his stumps and said, “Man, I don’t look too good, do I?”
It was enough to snap Kocher and the driver, Sergeant Michael Music, into action. Music drove forward several hundred meters. Kocher and Mazon got out, went to Wright’s door and reapplied the tourniquet to his leg. When they came under fire from ambushers hiding in a nearby house, Kocher braced himself on the hood and engaged the enemy positions, operating his rifle with his left arm.
Second Platoon had a new platoon commander. Fick had been replaced with Captain Brent Morel. As Fick had done in the ambush at Muwafakiya, Morel exited his Humvee with no regard for his own safety and attempted to extricate his men from danger. Morel chose to lead several Marines in a direct assault through enemy positions. Morel sprinted across an open plain, scaled a ten-foot berm under heavy fire, while engaging enemy forces with his rifle. About this time, the number two vehicle in the convoy (formerly Espera’s) was destroyed by a direct hit from either a mortar or RPG, wounding the main gunner but not killing him.
Morel continued his charge, leading Sergeant Willie Copeland toward a canal, beyond which lay the main enemy machine gun positions. A frontal assault on such emplacements was contrary to Marine Corps tactics, which call for a flanking movement to attack entrenched positions from the side or rear. One Marine in the unit later termed Morel’s actions “John Wayne shit”.
Given the intricacy of the terrain, the large number of attackers (estimated to be between forty and sixty) and the multiply directions they seemed to be firing from, it’s possible Morel actually thought he was flanking the enemy, and not climbing directly into their machine guns, as he in fact was.
Upon wading into the canal, Morel looked back to assess the progress of Copeland who was behind him, and took a bullet beneath his arm, which traversed his chest cavity. Copeland and the other Marines from his team, under withering enemy attack, now set about pulling Morel from the direct line of fire and administering first aid.
Disastrous and foolishly brave as some considered Morel’s move, Kocher insists, “Whatever people say, he acted quickly to orient the enemy’s fire away from my vehicle. I believe he saved the life of my team”.
Gunny Wynn was no longer platoon sergeant for Bravo Two. “Casey Kasem”, the company ops chief blamed (he insists unfairly so) for critical shortages of LSA gun lubricant during the 2003 invasion, had been made platoon sergeant prior to the deployment in 2004. He rode in a vehicle driven by “Manimal” Jacks. With the platoon partially destroyed, Casey Kasem took command. He ordered Baptista’s Team Three to flank the enemy as per the orthodox immediate-action drill. At the same time, they provided suppressive fire to the Marines dragging the gravely wounded Morel from the berms.
Baptista dismounted Lilley and Stafford and led them toward the enemy’s fortified machine-gun emplacements. They moved in from the sides and behind the entrenched enemy gunners. Stinetorf provided covering fire. As in 2003 a heavy weapon jammed at a critical moment. Stinetorf’s .50 cal failed after twenty rounds. Stinetorf resumed fire with his SAW.
In the trenches, Baptista’s team attacked the enemy at close quarters. A grenade thrown by one insurgent rolled back on him, cutting his torso off at the legs. Lilley knows it sounds implausible but he’s pretty certain the torso kept crawling toward him using its arms. He didn’t stop, Lilley believes (and nobody else who was with him disbelieves), until Stafford fired several rounds into his head. Stafford led the way over another berm under heavy fire and killed two more enemy at close quarters. Behind them, when Stinetorf ran through all of his SAW ammunition, he dismounted and grabbled an PRK machine gun from an insurgent he had just shot and used it to resume fire.
Casey Kasem and Jacks also moved into the berms for close-quarters combat with the enemy. Stinetorf still marvels at the change in his assessment of Casey Kasem. “It was weird. In IOF 1 I hated him. But as soon as he become our platoon sergeant, it was clear that tactically he knew his shit, he trained us really well, and he was definitely not afraid to fight. I really like the guy”.
As Gunny Wynn is fond of saying, “Anybody can have a good day, or bad day, but in the Marine Corps one day can change everything”.
In the ambush of April 7, Casey Kasem reversed his reputation among the men in Bravo Two. Captain Morel, twenty-seven years old, married, father of the two, died. Kocher, who waited to be medevaced with him, watched Morel fade out. “Captain Morel was a redhead,” Kocher later told me. “When he bled out, his lips chapped, and his skin turned white, and I swear when he died his hair had turned white, even though I know that’s impossible”.
Twenty-six attackers were killed. No prisoners were taken. The medals flew like shrapnel. Morel was posthumously awarded a Navy Cross, the tenth handed out since the invasion of Iraq. President Bush met with his widow prior to the award ceremony. Sergeant Copeland also received the Navy Cross. Baptista, Lilley, and Stafford each received Silver Stars. Bronze Stars were given to five others in the platoon, including Kocher.
In late April I spent a few days with Kocher and his then Marine-reservist, body-builder wife, Jaime, at their home in Oceanside, California. He’d lost forty pounds during his first few days of hospitalization on Germany. His right arm was wired together from his shoulder to the tip of his trigger finger. Kocher was already going to the gym, “The Semper Fit” fitness center at the Camp Pendleton hoping to speed his recovery.
During OIF 1 Kocher used to draw smiley faced on his 40mm grenades prior to launching them at the enemy. In this phase of his recovery, Kocher’s face bore a permanent smiley-face grin, like the ones he would draw on a grenade. I speculated that it was a result of the pain medication he was on, the pain he was still in despite the meds, the massive case of tinnitus that plagued him since the loss of hearing in one ear, and Kocher’s perpetually sunny disposition, which I’d noticed since the first day I’d met him in 2003.
The deep flesh wounds on Kocher’s broken arm needed to breathe. A doctor came to Kocher’s house each morning and redressed his arm in the sheerest of bandages. They flapped in the breeze like Kleenexes, revealing deep red, weeping trenches.
Standing outside an Applebee’s one Sunday waiting in the line with all the other Marines taking their families there for a big night out, a woman waiting behind Kocher fell over and hit her head on the concrete. Kocher knelt over her to help. She opened her eyes, screamed, then apologized. “Oh, my God. It’s your arm,” she said.
Throughout dinner with his wife and several of his friends Kocher grinned, shaking his head when she talked to him. “I can’t hear you, honey. I’m deaf,” he repeated, grinning wilder.
Doctors had told him he would need a titanium implant in his ear to restore hearing and cure his tinnitus. Kocher joked with his wife that he would delay that surgery until the very last moment before deployment to Iraq again, since he liked being deaf, not listening to all the bullshit people talked about back home.
I doubted he would make it back to Iraq anytime soon. Despite his trips to the gym, Kocher could barely walk more than a few minutes on the treadmill before losing his breath. The doctors had told him he might never be able to extend or lift his right arm again, let alone operate his trigger finger.
Kocher believed that with the right combination of willpower and exercise he would be back in shape within a few months. While I never saw Kocher use steroids, their use among troops trying to speed up recovery from injuries has become common.
Given the fact that he’d just lost his platoon commander, suffered his own injuries and witnessed the maiming of one of his best friends, Eddie Wright, I didn’t want to demean Kocher’s prior service by questioning his desire to return for more, but ultimately I had to say something. I told him he should just stay away from Iraq. I didn’t want to see him or anybody else I knew get injured or killed over there. I told Kocher that it was obvious the war has mushroomed into a religious jihad. Maybe it was time to just pull out.
Kocher looked at me, grinning. “These aren’t nationalist, religious Jihadist anything we’re fighting over there. We’re killing criminals.”
I stared until you were no longer in view
Just dust in my eyes
A dot on the horizon
Blends with the sky
Fades out of sight
And so great is the tyranny
of this dissimulation
that although my heart swells
with profoundest longing,
there is challenge in my eyes
and resignation in my voice.
OPERATION GET SOME: day six + bromance
→evan “q-tip” stafford and pfc john christeson
women’s ice hockey
XXII olympic games
germany - japan 4:0