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Sad News from Borneo

During another exercise, at the same place we are at today, Gurkha soldiers mounted an attack against other Gurkhas who were in a fixed and reasonably defensible position.  The attackers opened fire on the camp.  During the “firefight,” another Gurkha slipped into camp, made it to the headquarters, then walked inside and yelled Allah u Akbar!, and “detonated.”  The “suicide bomber” had crawled a long distance in a drainage ditch, through a culvert, and slipped up to the perimeter.  He cut a small hole in a fence and slipped in while the deception attack was happening elsewhere.  This was very realistic. Something similar happened in Mosul in December 2004, killing more than twenty people in an American dining facility.  One time in Diyala Province, Iraq, a suicide attacker took the hand of a small child so that he would look innocuous, and walked up to a police station and detonated.  There are countless such stories from Afghanistan and Iraq.  The terrorist enemies are heartless, ruthless animals.

The commander took a small break from training today and assembled his men.  There was news from Afghanistan, not yet reported.  A convoy was moving on a road when a motorcycle apparently crashed into the second vehicle in the convoy.  He said the motorcycle driver was on the ground.  British soldiers piled out to help.  There was a detonation killing three British soldiers, and apparently about thirty local people also were killed.  One of the soldiers was a Gurkha, known to some of the men here.  Next of kin has been notified.  Suddenly it felt as if we were back in the war.  It’s always so close.  The news was very saddening for me, and also to the men.  They took the news and returned to training for Afghanistan.

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