Author Topic: Operation Iron Serpent - Phase I (Arrival & Briefing)  (Read 710 times)

Offline Wihan Meinertzhagen

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Re: Operation Iron Serpent - Phase I (Arrival & Briefing)
« Reply #15 on: July 23, 2017, 01:34:59 PM »
”Sir…” Wihan braced up respectfully in reply to what the American officer had said to him. It was obvious he was the dual-commander of this operation. Having Colonel Jordaan’s involvement made him feel a little more confident. He knew Jordaan’s had experience ‘up North’ during his time with the Recce Commandoes during the Apartheid era (or so he heard) conducting cross-border raids. If anyone knew the AO like the back of their hand- it would be Colonel Jordaan’s in Wihan’s opinion.

His eyes and ears took in the assembled officers and SNCOs present. There was a number of different uniforms, unit patches, as well as more obvious items- like the SAS berets he spotted. They had certainly called in heavy hitters for this op. Much of what Jordaans said about what the Zimbabweans was familiar to him. SANDF GHQ intel cells had regularly posted briefings and updates on all possible hostile forces they might have to face. Certainly he took it with a grain of salt. Just because a Zimbabwean soldier was more used to brutalising cowered civilians, didn’t mean he wasn’t capable of put a round through Wihan’s face if he had a chance. That said, he was also certain that as effective as the RM-70s were, they were probably badly maintained. Wihan would bet a dozen of beer that after the third rocket was fired by one there was a good chance that the fourth would misfire in the tube and explode, destroying everything within metres of the truck. Besides…he knew for a fact that they had no counter-barrage radar on the other side (or at least none of recent design) and would quickly fall victim to the SANDF’s G5 howitzers. Outcry of outrage from Zimbabwe? After the propaganda that Harare churned out weekly endlessly about the government in Pretoria- who would notice?

Wihan wasn’t too hard for 2nd Lieutenant Cannon to spot. First off, he was the only person that wasn’t there before he arrived. Secondly, he was the only SANDF NCO sitting at the back. The officer asked a valid question. Glancing at the senior SANDF officer, he saw him nod in reply to his unasked question. ”No offense taken sir” he answered politely, ”I have been tasked with your team as an individual. There is slight- I emphasise slight, danger that hostiles may have crossed the broder in the last few weeks and maybe have laid mine or recced the area we will be working in. My task is to conduct first of all, check for any spoors left by these groups. It should be noted people traffickers have a number of infiltration routes in our area to bring in undocumented illegal workers into our country to work in the mines. Unfortunately, with our nation’s economic problems has aggravated a lot of industrial trouble in the last few years. In addition, these same route may also be used by illegal poachers. Some are former terrorists from the Bush War in Rhodesia and have been involved in the illegal ivory trade. Asian buyers will pay top dollar for ivory- no questions asked. I know some of one of the local languages, so if a prisoner is taken on our side of the border, I can find out why they are there” he said.
A wry smile crossed his face for a second. ”I also know where to look for crocodiles. They are there…maybe not too close, but I don’t think the Colonel will be happy with me if one of your guys ended up as a crocodile’s dinner. Probably won’t happen, but I don’t think we will want to take chances there”.
Serious again, he continued. ”Don’t worry sir- we won’t be alone. They won’t risk casualties by launching a serious assault against us- Harare has too much at stake to risk losing face in front of the public, which is supposed to have cowered. Bad enough the enemy get to shed first blood- a discontented population is even worse. Just so you know, the ‘bush telegraph’ is not a myth and does work. We will be fine sir”.

The briefing over Wihan waited until the hanger was empty enough, that he could approach him. He shook Andrew’s hand confidently and with respect. ”Corporal Meinertzhagen sir…an honor to serve with  you. I will do my best to be of assistance where you need me” he answered. Nodding he left the hanger with his new officer and headed off to clutch up his kit.
Since he was deploying in the field on what was considered by the regiment as a ‘sensitive’ operation, he wore a sanitised SANDF uniform. Bereft of all unnecessary badges and patches except for his name patch and rank, he looked like he could be a SAAF mechanic, a driver from a transport unit or just another field engineer. Likewise he carried ubiquitous webbing and pack, with a standard issue R4 rifle. Slipping into the hanger he deposited his kit neatly in a corner and with his rifle slung (leave his rifle unattended? Never!), he reported to Andrew. ”Well…here we are sir. What can I do first for you” he asked.

Offline Ed Connolly

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Re: Operation Iron Serpent - Phase I (Arrival & Briefing)
« Reply #16 on: July 24, 2017, 05:01:39 PM »
Air Force Base Makhado
Louis Trichardt, Limpopo Province, South Africa

As soon as they were let go, Ed and his Marines went for the hangar as well to start gearing up. He half considered requesting to borrow some South African kit, he had done his homework and knew the South Africans took their firearms about as seriously as Americans did, but he decided not to complicate logistics.

Everyone had the usual tricked out M4A1 SOPMOD, with a suppressed Kimber-made M1911A1. Cho also had an M40A5 sniper rifle, but no one was bringing anything unusual or heavy to this party. Ideally, they would never have to fire a single shot, but Ed knew better than to rely on idealism.

"Alright, last word. If things go sideways for the other teams, we'll try to fall back and reinforce. But if that's not viable, hang back and harass whatever's coming their way. And if it goes to shit for us, we do not take chances. Let the local fighters bring the hate, we shag ass back to the nearest LZ or attempt to cross the river." Ed explained.

"What're the odds this is going to go to shit?" Gunny asked.

"We both know the answer to that. But a lot of folks are pretty sure that this is just a whole lot of bullshit and posturing. The alternative is that South Africa gets to see how well it can hold up to an OIF scenario. Hopefully someone gets their head in their ass wired together and we'll be out in a week." Ed replied. The other Marines nodded in agreement. The joking was all but gone, every one of them had a serious and somber expression. Many of them had taken fire in Iraq or Afghanistan, they knew all too well what awaited them if peace failed here; a lot of pissed off and desperate people looking to take a few invaders down.

"Saint Mattis watch over us, then." Cho finally said, breaking up the silence.

"You sound like such a fucking boot, rook." Doc replied, using the derisive term used among Marines to refer to personnel who have not yet seen combat action. While Cho had seen a little action in Afghanistan, there was at least the modifier that Doc said Cho sounded like a boot. Despite being technically Navy, Doc was about as Marine as they came.

"Why you gotta be like that, doc? You wound my very soul." Cho replied.

"Yeah, I gotta say, that was a bit overkill." Gunny added.

((OOC Note: Players are free to branch off into their own threads from here so as to minimize confusion))