Not WWII - But Somalia...PT1>Language allert<

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Airman 1st Class
Nov 22, 2006
"Bait, Hook Juggling RPG's"

Mogadishu Somalia, September 1993

No, this ain't about Blackhawk Down, that episode takes place 3 October – which is in another three weeks or so.

"Bait and Hook" is a modification of the 'Eyes Over Mog' mission we've been doing since June – we still maintain two Blackhawk's 24/7 over the city (which has been grueling on both airframes and crews) for a constant presence and rapid reaction, but with the Bait and Hook we take a more surgical approach to frustrating Addid's clans continuing harassment of the humanitarian mission or some UN base camp. We modify one of the Hawks to support two sniper teams (sniper and spotter) from each cargo door. The Bait bird is unmodified, with the exception of additional attention getters installed, like some flash bangs grenades and a couple cases of tiny ¼ liter drinking water cubes that we freeze.

I volunteer, once again to the despair of my crew, to be the Bait bird – I prefer the baiting task, basically because I'm always moving low and fast, scouting and drawing the enemy out….and I get to control the tempo of our action. And frankly, I think being Hook is an invitation for a sucker RPG or other well placed shot, because the Hook bird, for the most part, has to remain static so the snipers can pop off an accurate shot.

Ya…anyway, we're at like the 3 hour mark of our 4 hour 'Eyes Over Mog' mission, I'm doing my initial recon circling over Bakara Market in a 45 degree bank at like 1500 AGL, after having completed our weapons test fire well south of town and having gotten our Hook aircraft stationed in a position to view and shoot down the streets surrounding the market place.
Good. The climb to altitude outside of town, the no moon night and our black out lighting seems to have allowed us to get staged unnoticed. Lesse, it's 2230...the skinny's should be quite high on their "Khat" drug about now and scrapping for a fight – so, it's just about time to divert their attention.

Well **** lets get it over with - I squeeze the intercom switch to the first detent to talk to my crew - "OK, ya'll know the drill; accurate, concise SPOTREPs; no Ahh… this, Ahh… that ****. I wanna hear, like; "RPG crew 10 O'clock, rooftop, 500 meters, preparing to fire. Dig? Keep your eyes out, scan scan scan – report the most imminent threat first." To my co-pilot: "Tony, monitor aircraft systems, my power, TGT, rotor RPM…and, as we enter the target zone get lightly on the controls with me…you know, just in case." "OK, we ready to dance?"

"Noooo." Tony replies.
"Ahhh. ya…no **** bro."

Then pressing the comm switch to the second detent I transmit to my Hook bird: "One five this is Two Three, on Fox, in the red."
"15, go ahead."
"All set? Got a tally on me?
"We're set, and tally on you."
"Copy 15, I'm commencing descent, circling south near the embassy, then behind your ass for the market…say altitude?"
"300 feet."
"Copy – expect us to come in from behind and lower."
"Roger 23…we got your back."
"Talk is cheap bitch."

We start our shallow clockwise descending turn to line ourselves up just off the main street and cross the markets tin covered layered roofing diagonally to hopefully reduce our exposure time to small arms fire.

I take a moment for myself. Alrighty Lord, as always, you're in control, it's my body here but you control my hands and feet, do me well, do us well. And on that note my dear Jesus, think you can like transport me right this moment, to….Hmmm…..boy, a relaxing instrument flight on a clear starlit night over Tennessee? Enroute to Muscles Shoals, Alabama, and then I'll order one of that restaurants huge ass juicy steaks -- damn, what's that place called? I can't recall, but that was some of the best flesh I've sunk my teeth into.

OK Mister, you had your 1 second dream, now get back to the present. Christ I'm tired of this ****.

"Chief, get that case of frozen Kilimanjaro cubes ready to dump out the left side."
"Roger sir."
"Lead it, and riddle the tin roofs, dude."
"I'm all over it."

"15 this is 23."
"1 minute out, coming across your ass now."

We skim 15 feet over the rooftops at 130 knots; I feel a very slight nudge on the stick as Tony joins lightly on the controls, as I've trained him…just in case the pilot flying takes a severely incapacitating round – Good. To throw off the aiming of the skinny's small arms fire I weave the bird slightly left and right and kick the bird abit out of trim, skidding us in an uncoordinated profile – this basically points the nose of the aircraft slightly off it's direction of actual flight and may cause those shooting at us to mislead their aiming point – that's my theory anyway.

To part two....

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