The CSMs plan was a simple one, hell, are not all Military plans so designed.
When planning you have to have an alternative plan ready, just in case the enemy f**ks-up your original plan by doing the complete opposite of what you thought he would do. In an instant, you would have to rely on the alternative plan with its new timings, routes and other details.
Therefore, you have to keep all plans simple because under pressure mens minds get tired. An over-complicated plan is more difficult to change and will usually end in disaster. So always remember, even when in civvy street: - KISS… Keep it simple stupid!
All plans should have a withdrawal written in. Like any other operation of war,withdrawal aims at the destruction of the enemy so your plan must include ways to hurt the enemy as you withdraw to a pre-arranged position where you will hold and fight.
Aggressive withdrawal is paramount, otherwise; before you know it, an unorganised retreat is underway. Unlike Civvy Street, in Military planning there is no room for grey area thinking. It is simply kill or be killed which are nice and easy choices that you can live, or die, with.
I once served under an Officer who mulled over every detail in planning. He would change this or modify that until his battle plan looked like that great literary effort War and Peace, with just as many pages and as hard to understand. The moment we were ordered forward the whole thing fell apart and we lost some of our guys for absolutely nothing. It turned out he had ballsed-up the timings by constant fiddling with them and we took blue-on-blue.
The most difficult task was to get a group round to the other side of the camp to cover the escape route. The CSM volunteered to command that escape party and estimated that they would be in position by 22.30.
The section under my control was to eliminate two, or more if possible, sentries while the main body moved into the camp area.
It is worth taking the risk to make a little noise in the early stages to make good progress, and then have a stop for a minute or two, after which you have to move more cautiously with as little noise as possible on a Stag take-down.
Elimination of Stags is never easy and is a nerve-racking business, knowing you are only yards or feet from a target Stag. With the seconds ticking away before the main assault, can drive you into a funk for the slightest noise made by you could cost many lives.
Killing Stags can be done in many ways and the choice is always down to the individual or team told off to do it. However, there is a kind of set rule, which says that you only ever kill a Stag or Stags humanely. The thinking behind it being that if his buddies counter attack knowing he or they were butchered rather than killed then be prepared for some very serious pay-back all round.
Lets face it, Stags arent stupid for they expect to be attacked and are normally trained for the occasion and work in pairs unless they are not from a regular Army, which makes the Stag eliminators job much easier.
Ground Stags more than Camp Stags are harder to detect because they lay camed-up and are more switched on than a couple of Guys who feel safe close to a perimeter defence holding lots of their little buddies ready to pour out at the first warning shot or shout..
In fact, there are many types of Stags. These include Air Stags who warn of Air Attack, Chemical Stags equipped with detection paper and a NAIAD unit located downwind to warn of blistering, nerve or other chemical agent attack.
Stag duty is a Military skill and not just wandering around with a rifle shouting, Halt! Who goes there! When confronted by a stranger. Nope, it can be very technical indeed, just like their elimination. With all this in mind I had decided it was best to take the Stags down in one go rather than risk an alarm, which would prove to be a real pisser for the CSM and the assault guys, and of course the people held in the camp.
Camp Stag positions can be easily compromised by sloppy changeovers so we were hoping for just that as we cautiously moved into position.
We had been reliably informed that apart from men there were also women and kids held in the camp, some as hostages and some designated as rape victims, because of this the CSM had given the no-quarter order, in other words we would kill every enemy we could who did not surrender instantly when challenged. I, and many others, had decided that the shoot first plan was best and f**k the consequences!
The terrain reminded me of Northern Canada so I felt relaxed and at home, the camp itself was a makeshift affair built around an abandoned poultry-breeding complex. The poultry sheds holding the civvy prisoners and the offices used as the interrogation/rape houses and guard accommodation. It was located in a valley close to a medium sized river with a single dirt track road leading to it from the main highway.
Although we had armoured vehicles blocking the access road to the camp and therefore eliminating any escape by vehicle it had been decided that to prevent unnecessary civvy casualties amongst the people held there a conventional infantry assault would be best thereby giving the guards time to surrender to our forces. My thought was simply F**ck that!
I had absolutely no intention of standing up in the open demanding that some ******* armed with an automatic weapon, and nowhere to run, surrenders. Sure, I would shout a warning from the prone or cover if I could, but the challenged would have precisely three seconds to comply. Just long enough to drop the weapon but not long enough to get under cover and fire at me. Any longer than that would result in a double-tap to his chest.
The first Stag I spotted was long and thin, he was wearing a uniform which was much too big for him and looked no more than seventeen years old. His buddy appeared from behind a large bush buttoning up his flies and blowing smoke from a fat cigar.
This guy looked old, possibly in his early sixty's. Both were talking to each other in loud tones. They looked quite comical, like Laurel and Hardy in uniform and were too good to miss. The young one laid his weapon down and started to engage in some amateur gymnastics whilst the old one stood by laughing. This saved the young ones life.
The old guy fell with a round through the head, the young guy just stood there staring whitely at his dead comrade. I could hear the rounds taking down the other Stags as I shouted a warning to the young guy "Hey, you there, with the long neck, back away from that weapon and hold your arms away from your side. NOW! "
He looked up to where my shout had come from and with one second to spare, he complied with my command. I stood up and told him to walk towards me slowly. As he came closer he started gibbering apologies in crap awful English and started to cry.
As I had other things to do, I could not care for this guy as a prisoner and walk him out. Anyway, by the smell of him he had literally crap his pants when my round had struck his buddy.
A scream pierced the air from the far side of the camp where the CSM's guys would be entering . It came long and shrill. A man's useless protest at his ending. On hearing it the young guy fell in a faint at my feet .
I rolled him over, holding my breath as best I could at the stench of this human crap-house and pulled back his arms, locking his wrists and thumbs together with my cable ties. A quick search of him produced some personal papers and a wallet. In the wallet, there was the usual rubbish plus some local currency and two photographs.
One of the photographs showed him having forced sex with a woman tied to a table. The woman was in obvious distress as other guys wearing the same uniform as he looked on. The other was of him standing proudly in uniform smiling, with an older man, older woman and young girl, more than likely his parents and sister.
What a F**king Hero I had captured! Had I known beforehand about the wallet contents I would have tapped the dirty little devil on first sighting.
To bring him round I poured some of the contents from my water bottle over his head, slapped him as hard as I could, and kicked him three or four times in the groin. As per the required treatment for those who have fainted.
There is nothing more effective than a steel plated sole Para boot for administering first aid to the afflicted.
With a groan and a moan, he regained consciousness so I dragged him to his feet. I roughly pulled his tunic off his back and over his arms then told him to walk over to the access road and head for the highway and surrender himself to our Armoured guys. A good hard kick in his shitty pants sent him on his way.
I turned the wallet and photographs over to the Provosts after the shift.
As I ran down the slope, I could see my section gathering beside the camp fence on the re-org. There had been no other Stags taken prisoner.
We then cut the fence and moved into the camp proper to join the relief assault, which was now taking place. As we fanned out working in rifle pairs we quickly covered the open area and entered the first poultry-breeding shed.
A crowd of strangely-dressed people tottered and stumbled about as the light from the doorway flooded in. Men, women and kids were shown up. Most were dressed in rags and tatters of clothing but here and there was a suit of clothes, a pair of riding breeches and even a black smoking jacket. A couple stood staring at us are wearing their evening finery, he in black tie and tails and she in her long evening gown, a pretty lady with long dark curls.
The sight of this collection of people made us nervous so we griped our weapons ready for anything. This was modern day Europe for f**ks sake! Not WW2 Germany! But it was happening again, time has turned a circle, the ethnic cleansing, nationalism.
The prisoners stared at us, we stared questionably back at them. In truth we were a little scared of them. Then a kid walked forward and looked up at me, he lifted his little hand and touched my shoulder flash. "Canada" he said, "You are from Canada".
All they really wanted to do was run from that place as fast as they could, and who could blame them, it took some persuasion I can tell you to convince them to stay put until the camp was secured by our guys. In the end, I had to tell off a rifle pair as guards for the people before they would even consider it.
Magnanimously, and without any prompting whatsoever, our guys handed over every crumb of rations and medical kit they had to the people held there.
I contacted the CSM on the net and he ordered me to head for the Offices. I was to secure the building and take control of any personnel found there. It was the best order I have ever received in this life.
As my remaining guys and I headed for the Offices I was really looking forward to that particular shift as I had the photograph of the guys who were there with the skinny Stag. I planned some payback for the lady on the table.
Retribution can manifest itself anywhere and at anytime. Worth remembering if you are engaged in some piss-em-off activity. Especially if those whom you piss off wear Para Wings.
"Hey! You! f**k pigs in there, surrender or get killed! " So shouted I at the office block and its inhabitants. I meant every word for sure.
I guess they understood, for to my complete disappointment they did just that, surrendered.
Our guys rounded them up with a little slap here or there to speed up the process. Not that uncommon and quite acceptable in war. Especially in cases where civilian torture and, or, abuse has been proved.
One guy shot himself, the dirty coward! I recognised him from the photograph, I had really wanted to rip his arsehole open with the blunt side of my battle knife rather than him take the 9mm get-out-of-jail pill, but I guess wishes are wishes and nothing more.eh
Anyway, they say all things will come to he who waits.
Luckily, In keeping with that great cliché, it proved that amongst the ones whose self-preservation was paramount in their eyes was in fact another three who were in the photograph, so I settled on that opportunity to set things straight for the Lady on the table.
Now I know you are thinking what did this crazy guy do to these unfortunates who just happened to fall into his hands, after all they were just following orders and were just ordinary guys serving their country. Blah, blah, blah.
In truth I did nothing to them personally.
There was a shortage of accommodation you see, it happens when people dont want to be moved on for one reason or another.Therefore. the simple solution was to put our prisoners in beside the original prisoners. A simple solution to a simple problem.eh
The fact that they committed suicide by cutting off their own scrotum was not our fault. Was it?
War is hell, aint it!
Addendum. I have no idea why this post has been diverted by admin and banged in here for it directly relates to the Canadian Army and no other.