Defenders Chronicle

The DEFENDERS CREED:

Defending is my way of life. Volunteering as a “Defender”, understanding the hazards of my profession, I will always uphold the prestige, honor, and “Esprit de Corps” of my defense flight.

 Examples must be set for others to follow and this I will always endeavor to do. Giving 100% will always be my goal.

Freedom is the reason that I must defend. I will always fight harder, move faster, and go farther than the enemy.

Energetically will I carry out the orders of those appointed over me. My appearance and proper use of my equipment will set the standard for others to follow.

Never will I leave a fellow “Defender” in battle. If by chance I fall into the hands of the enemy, never will I embarrass my country.

Doing a job such as ours means I will always keep myself physically fit, mentality strong, and my moral standards high.

Ethics of my profession and my high degree of self motivation as well as my determination and my faith in my God will carry me through when others fall. I will shoulder more than my share of any task, and help others in any way possible.

Realizing that the aircraft, weapons systems and personnel I defend keep my country strong and free. I pledge my life in their defense.

Defenders Chronicle

The Next Episode of;

“Reapers War: The Beginning.”

We take up in this episode after First Sergeant Pete Steel arrives at Rebel Station and meets with Jake.

They talked for a few minutes about the Ranger stuff and then Pete said, “Jake, I know you know about what’s happening up North and about how it’s about to hit the fan. So, instead of me training the cops at Kunsan, your commander thought it would be a good idea if I came up here and sort of, helped you. So, me being from Camp Page, I said sure. Why not? And from what I’ve seen so far, it looks hopeless. Nevertheless, with the eighteen or twenty days until it does ‘hit the fan,’ I might be able to give you a fighting chance.”

Jake laughed. “Give me a fighting chance? Now exactly what do you mean by that?”

“Well, maybe not you. I mean, what chance could I have with you? But, I’ll give it my best shot anyway.” He sat down in the chair.

“Well, “Jake said, “you can forget about support from the captain. He has a death wish. He doesn’t even think that the North knows we’re here, let alone going to attack. He has it in his mind that this is a secret location.”

“A secret location,” Pete laughed.

“Yep, and get this. No one here has been doing anything but sitting on their rear for six months. There is something else I’m sure you will like. He says no patrols.”

“No patrols! Is he nuts?”

“That, my friend, is affirmative. And him being nuts contributes to us be sitting ducks.”

“Well, if he thinks this hill is a secret and he doesn’t want patrols, you are right. Sitting ducks you are.” Pete got up. “I’ll be talking with the captain in the morning. Want to come along?”

“You bet.”

Steel left and went to his room.

Howard came by Jake’s room and knocked on the door.

“Come in,” Jake said.

Howard opened it.

“Come on in and close the door,” Jake said, as he drank the last bit of coffee that had gotten cold. “Have a seat.”

Howard closed the door and sat down in the chair.

“Okay. First question, have you ever been out on a real patrol?”

“No, not yet,” Howard answered.

“Well, tomorrow you will have to learn the hard way. So, here it is. You will go out beyond the wire by 0400, going out at Bravo 9. They will be ready for you. I’ll be there with you as you go out. All I want you to do is go out about 200 meters and make a 360 around the base. I just want you and your team to get your feet wet, nothing special. But look for the places that we can use and, of course, any signs of people that might be out there, any questions?”

“Nope.”

“Good,” Jake said, showing his confidence. “Go and quietly brief your team.”

“Roger that.”

Jake had an idea. He left and went down to Pete’s room. He knocked on the door and heard Pete tell him to come in.

“Pete, I know you just got here, but how would you like to go out on a covert patrol in the morning. I’m sending Howard out and I think it would be beneficial to him if you went along.”

“I don’t see that as a problem.”

“Good. I will meet you here at 0355 and we’ll head out to Bravo 9. When you get back in, we’ll go and see the captain.”

Jake went back to his room and got ready for bed.

Lei Chung receives a coded message.

A coded message went out activating all North Korean special ops and terrorist cells for operation “Black Scorpion.” One such message was received by Lei Chung and his team operating around Kunsan Air Base. He smiled and notified his team.

Defender Chronicle

 “Reapers War: The Beginning.”

Jake has started the training for his squad and it has been difficult. But they were about to get a visitor, someone Jake met on the bus, his name is Pete Steel, US Army Ranger, lets take a look.

For the rest of the day the third squad worked hard at clearing out a wide enough spot to put the 706 into. When they were done, they backed it into place, and covered it with camo netting. Griffin would start training his team in the morning.

At 1900, they gathered back in the squad room. Jake knew they were tired, and he waited until everyone was seated. “Gentlemen, you’ve worked hard and have done a good job. But this is just the beginning. We have a lot of work ahead of us, so everyone get a shower and some rest. We are back at it again at 0645 in the morning.” Jake dismissed them and watched as a weary bunch of men and boys headed for showers and rest. Howard, Griffin and Walter stayed behind. Jake went over to the coffee pot and poured himself a cup of coffee.

“Howard, after everyone is down come by my room for a briefing.” He paused and looked up. “Chopper coming in,” he said out loud.

Howard and the others looked at each other then, Howard said, “We don’t hear anything.”

“Yea, it’s coming in from the southwest.” Jake picked up his coffee cup and went outside through the southeast corner door.

Howard and the others just sat there. This guy is what myths and legends are made of, Howard was thinking.

Sunset was at 19:49, so there was still plenty of light. Jake got outside and in about 30 seconds he saw it. He smiled because he could still, after so many years, determine direction just by sound. The pilot made his approach and slowly brought the Huey to a hover over its landing spot. Just a few seconds later the pilot changed its pitch and it slowly set down. When the skids touched down, an Army First Sergeant jumped out from the left side. The captain and Hixon were there to greet him. Jake watched as the Army First Sergeant approached the captain.

“First Sergeant Steel?” the captain asked, putting his hand out.

“Yes, Sir,” Steel answered, shaking the captain’s hand.

“Follow me.” The captain turned and started walking across the pad toward the southwest corner entrance of the main building, and Steel followed with Hixon behind him.    Jake watched intently, and as Steel got closer, he thought, man there is something familiar about him. He stepped back inside the building, looking over his shoulder. I wonder why he’s here.

The captain led the way to the main building, entered the southwest end entrance and showed Steel his room. Griffin saw them come in and snapped his fingers to get Howard and Walter’s attention. They looked as Griffin pointed. As he followed the captain, Steel noticed the three men staring at him.

“Right here, Sergeant,” Captain Beckman said. “I’ll see you in the morning.” And without giving the sergeant time to say anything, he turned and walked back out the same way he came in.

“Thank you, Sir,” Steel said, as he watched him. He stood there for a second, opened the door to his room, dropped his gear, turned around and went to where he saw the three men.

Griffin watched him as he approached and saw that he was an Army first sergeant. He waited for him to get there and the first sergeant stopped in front of him. “Just out of curiosity,” Griffin said, noticing the name Steel on the nametag. “What is an Army first sergeant doing here? Are you lost or something, or are you planning on joining us?”

Steel looked Griffin in the eye and without expression said, “Where is Sergeant Anderson?” Griffin looked back unflinching. How does he know Anderson?

Howard walked over to them. “He is in the first room to your right, just before you leave the hall.”

Steel stood there for a few seconds more looking Griffin in the eye, then slowly turned and walked down the hall.

Griffin turned his head and looked at Howard. “I wonder what an Army first sergeant is doing here and what he wants with Anderson.”

“Don’t know, but did you see the jump wings and the Ranger Tab. I’ve got a feeling that he ain’t here just for a visit.”

“Ranger,” Walters said, milking his chin, “dawg and everthang.”

“Yeah,” Griffin said. He turned slowly and walked over to the counter for a cup of coffee.

Steel found the door he was looking for and stopped then knocked on the door. A few seconds later, Jake opened it. Staring at him was the first sergeant who looked very familiar. He looked down at his nametag.

“Steel, now exactly where have I heard that name before? Oh yeah. I remember. It was on a bus going to Osan … Ain’t you a little … off course? The last I heard you say, you were headed down south to some air base to teach some Air Force cops. Something to do with tactics or something, I think you said. How did that turn out? And, most importantly, how’d you end up here?”

Steel smiled. “That was jack leg Air Force and what are you doing anyway? Writing a book?” He waited for a second. “Well . . . mind if I come in?”

Jake looked at him for another couple of seconds, smiled and stuck his hand out. “Welcome aboard, Pete.” He turned a side and Steel walked in.

 

Defenders Chronicle

So, with war just under 25 days away, Jake begins to train his 13 man squad. He is going to do his best to turn them into the Reaper, or “Death the destroyer of man.”  He figures they might be the only chance Rebel Station has. Lets turn in.

TRAINING BEGINS NOW.

After the grand tour, Landis took Jake around to the end of the main building, which housed the supply section and armory. There he was issued all his equipment, a GAU, 9mm pistol with holster and two fifteen-round magazines with pouches, LBE, K-bar knife, two ammo pouches with eight full 30-round magazines, flashlight, compass, two canteens, rucksack, and sleeping bag. He had his own H-style harness LBE and preferred it over the one they issued. As squad leader, he received an AN/PRC 128 handheld tactical radio, with two batteries and a charger. When he was done, he went over to a table where he laid it all out in the proper order and put it on his web gear. He then put it on and made a few adjustments. He picked up his GAU and walked out into the main area where the choppers would land.

He stood there for a minute thinking about what was happening here verses what was supposed to be happening. If the Captain wants to sit around and wait on death that is his business, he and his men were not, they were going to be ready and they were going to fight. It was 1425. He turned and headed for the squad room where his squad was assembled. At 1430, Jake walked in.

“Gentlemen, you . . . are going to become the destroyer of men, you will become Reaper. Now everyone, get your gear and fall out outside at the rear of the building by the Duck. Howard, bring a PRC/77. Training begins right now so move – move – move. ”

The men quickly got up and ran back to their rooms and in a few minutes they were headed out the back door of the main building. Jake was waiting for them at the Duck.

“Fire Team Leaders, get your teams.” He said and waited for them to get assembled.

“Alright, from now on you will have your weapon with you everywhere you go. Are we clear about that?” He looked around at their faces and saw their approval. “From what you have told me you have been through the basic air base defense training. But that is far from adequate which means when the war comes, you will not survive. Now I can’t do anything for the others, but for this team, that is about to change. What takes many months to learn, you only have twenty-five or less, days. Hopefully you will learn enough to keep you alive,” Jake said, looking at each man. “I am going to try and drive into you a merciless killer instinct. I am going to make you what I call the ‘Reaper.’ You can’t have mercy on the enemy. Believe me, I’ve fought with them and they will not have mercy on you. They don’t care about you, your family, or your country. And they will do anything and everything they can to make sure you are the one who is dead. And I must say that history proves that they are very successful in what they do. Now, I don’t expect you to be heroes. Just do your part. And let me say this, I don’t care what the captain say’s, we are going to patrol. You will learn and put into practice every lifesaving technique that I can teach you. So, prepare yourselves for it and if all goes well, our first patrol will be in a few days. I’ll work out the details and let you know. So, without any further ado, let’s get this thing started.”

The squad went through a few patrolling techniques and formations, learned a little bit about the radio and at 1800, Jake called it a day.

“Gentlemen, gather around.” He waited for them. “That’s it for the day. You’ve done well but have a long way to go, so go get some rest, we show up at 0530 in the morning for guard mount. After that, we do some PT, and then we continue training.”

To order go to Amazon.com (Reapers War: The Beginning)

Reapers War cover 12.01.19

Defender Chronicle

So, we have seen Jake as he arrived at Rebel Station and we’ve seen his introduction to Captain Shawn Beckman. We’ve seen also his meeting of his squad and if course their meeting of him. There is of course more to come so stay tuned. 

Jake is introduced to his Squad and he introduces himself.

“Sergeant Anderson, I presume?” Griffin said, as he put his hand out, “and, just out of curiosity, is that authorized clothing?”

“That, Sergeant is affirmative to both questions,” Jake answered with a smile, putting his hand out as well.

“We heard you were coming to join the herd, so welcome aboard. Come on in and let me introduce you to the squad.”

Jake nodded and followed him into the room.

“My name is Jerry Griffin, but you can call me Griff. Over there at that table is Senior Airman Hathaway, Airman First Class Pierce, and Airman First Class George. They are my fire team. At that table right there is mister no humor, no expression, Staff Sergeant Howard with Senior Airman Clancy and Airman First Class Hammer. Over at the far table is, Sergeant Walter, Senior Airman Jennings, Airman First Class Rebhouser, and the Kidd. And, last but not least, sitting at a table all by his lonesome is Sergeant Parker.”

Jake looked slowly around again. “Gentlemen,” he said loudly, “may I have your attention.”

Everyone turned to look at him.

He looked at their faces. They were young and had never been in a fire fight where real bullets were flying and real people were trying to kill them. He knew that mean a couple of things, first they would freeze, or they would know that if they did they would die and so they would shoot back, not hitting anything of course but shoot back none the less. And then he thought about that Reaper thing, not even. He turned his attention back to the men and gave them an icy stare. “My name is Technical Sergeant Jacob T. Anderson, Ranger, I am your new squad leader.”

“Ranger, that’s interesting,” Sergeant Parker said softly as he looked at their new leader.

Jake heard the remark and turned to look at him. “That’s right, I said Ranger, and with that, I have an announcement, we . . . are going to war?”

“Captain says we ain’t so . . .” Pierce said looking at the others.

Jake looked at Pierce and the others as well and it seemed that they all agreed. “So I take it that no one has heard the last intelligence report?”

“Intelligence report,” Griffin said laughing. “No such thing.”

“Well, it looks like our illustrious captain is keeping this station in the dark. That is unacceptable. Let me give you an update on the latest info from Com.”

When he finished everyone looked like they had just been brought into the light. “Okay, now let’s get back to where we are now. I suspect that everyone here has been trained for combat, am I correct in that assumption.”

“Do you mean Air Base Ground Defense,” asked Hammer.

“Yes, Air Base Ground Defense.” Jake said as he looked at each one.

“I think we all have been. At least I have,” Clancy said.

“Well, if you have, when is the last time you at least practiced it?”

“As far as I know the only time we ever put it into practice is during the base exercises,” Howard said.

“That’s right,” Griffin said looking at Jake.

At that Jake knew that these men were so far behind the power curve it was ridiculous. If they were going to have the slightest chance of survival he was going to have to use every trick in the book he knew and push them hard to get them combat ready. And with only 25 days until the North attacks he was going to have his hands full. Jake cleared his throat. “Gentlemen I know you have heard what the Captain has said, but let me make this as clear as I can. We are – going to war and this hill being this close to the DMZ is a target to be taken out. The enemy that’s going to be coming up that road will stop at nothing to accomplish their goal. Killing is their game and when it comes to that, especially with the North Korean Special Forces, who I believe you will be in direct contact, they won’t hesitate. They are who is considered to be “The Deadliest of Warriors.” They are ruthless and care nothing about you. They won’t stop to ask about you or your family. They will have no mercy on you, so when it comes time for you to kill them. Do it. If you don’t make them die for their country, they will surely make you die for yours. Now, as far as the Reaper, I like the idea. But you are not it. You are far from it. However, I believe I can change that. In this next, 25 or so days, we are going to have to work harder than you have ever worked before. Your life, as well as the life of your friends and of this station will depend on it. I am going to push you as hard as I can so teamwork is going to be essential.” Parker came to his mind. “As a team there is no room for a lone wolf. If you are of that mind-set, you will not see it necessary to listen to me. And if you’re not listening to me, you’re gonna get me killed. And, believe me that-is-not going to happen.” He let all that sink in. “Another thing, I am a Christian and ask that you respect that.” He looked around and at each face.

Jake Meets Captain Shawn Beckman

I do hope you enjoy these readings and I hope you will become a follower of this blog. Comments are also welcome.

Now, when we left Jake last he was about to meet his new commanding officer, Captain Shawn Beckman, lets see how that meeting went.

Just a note. If you would like to order the book, and I hope you do, then go to AMAZON.COM.

“Come in, Sergeant Anderson,” the captain said rather harshly.Reapers War cover 12.01.19

Jake noticed the sharp tone in his voice and looked at the open door. He dropped his bag, opened his briefcase and took out some information, and walked in. When he got inside he saw the captain and he was looking down at some papers. It looked to Jake as if he was just lost in thought, sort of like a thousand meter stare.

When Beckman finally looked up, he saw, standing before him, in pressed BDUs, wearing his beret smartly, a tech sergeant.

As Jake watched him look him up and down, he saw a frown develop on his face. That frown quickly changed to a scowl when he saw the Ranger tab. That Ranger tab must really make him mad, Jake thought.

Noticing a hint of an inferiority complex Jake saluted and said, “Sir, Sergeant Anderson, reporting for duty.”

The captain reluctantly returned the salute, still scowling.

Jake noticed right off the animosity. “Sir, here is my information to include the orders Sergeant Landis gave me.”

The captain reached out and took them, and with obvious agitation in his voice, introduced himself. “I’m Captain Beckman and I really don’t know why you were sent here, but here you are. And you have … made it safely.”

“Yes, Sir, no problem,” Jake said still hearing that agitated tone in his voice.

The Captain already knew about the orders, so there was no sense looking at them. He looked at Jake and then slowly looked down. With utter contempt in his voice he said “let’s see here,” he said from memory of what he had already read. “Jacob T. Anderson, Ranger, Combat security police. Trained with the 1041st when they were first activated, calling them, “Air Soldiers.” Two tours of duty in Vietnam, awarded the combat ribbon and a bronze star for valor, trained in Special Ops. Also known as, ‘The Reb.’” He went on, and every word he said made him angrier. Air Soldier indeed, well, he needed a sergeant, so he had the perfect place for him, a place where he could confine his expertise.

“So,” the Captain said in a tone that suggested hatred, “you are what an ‘Air Soldier’ looks like.” He didn’t let Jake have a chance to respond. “Have a seat, Air Soldier.”

Jake stood for a second longer, turned slightly to look at the chair. He saw it was quite low giving that ‘looked down upon sensation,’ then looked back at the captain. Two things he immediately thought about, one; his suspicion about the captain was confirmed, he does have an inferiority complex. I just left a place full of clowns like this and I wind up here with another one, and two; the nightmare. These guys are everywhere. “I think I’ll stand, Sir. Besides, I’ve been sitting for a long time and I need to stretch my legs a bit,” he said, trying hard not to let the irritation he felt coming on show.

The captain looked at him, waited, and then said, “So, exactly how did you become a Ranger, seeing’s how the Air Force has no such thing.”

“After I left Vietnam I went to Special Ops training. One of their requirements was for me to go to Ranger school and so I did, at Fort Benning, Georgia. I earned my Ranger tab there.”

The Captain looked at him as he explained then cleared his throat. “I guess you are wondering why we are here.”

“Actually Sir, I know why we are here.”

Beckman looked at him with a puzzled look. Oh you do, do you, this I have got to hear. “So please tell me.”

“War sir,” Jake said with a slight smile, “that’s why. The North Korean Army is massing troops all along the DMZ and . . .”

“Well,” the Captain said stopping Jake. “War . . . is not the reason.” Captain Beckman paused for another moment, and then continued. “The reason we are here, other than the fact that this is a glorified listening post, is . . . I really have no idea why we are here. May-be it has something to do with the politician in Washington who just happened to be looking at the intelligence reports coming out of North Korea. May-be it got them a little suspicious and they decided to do some checking. May-be one of them needed a feather in his cap to make him look good. For whatever reason, here we are.” He paused when he noticed Anderson looking at the map of South Korea and especially at the location of Rebel Station.

“Sir, is this where we are, Chuncheon?” Anderson asked, pointing at the city on the map. Jake noticed the bridges. He thought that when the war does start, they would be an important enemy target that needed to be captured.

“Yes, it is. I know what you’re thinking. You are thinking, with Camp Page down in the city and it being the signal corps and all that why are we here. That is a good question. I wondered that myself and came up with the conclusion that because this is a United States Air Force resource up here, we guard it with United States Air Force personnel. That makes sense, doesn’t it?” He paused for a moment. “What we have here is essentially a listening post.” A glorified listening post, he said to himself.

Jake noticed again the sarcasm in his voice indicating his total dislike for this assignment. “Actually sir that is not what I was thinking …” Jake said. “I was thinking about those bridges sir and how the enemy is going to need them so they will have to capture them, especially if they want to get armor across.”

“We have,” Captain Beckman continued, “two forty-four man air base defense teams, one from Kunsan and the other from Osan. Because of a rumor of war, in which case I do not believe, our mission here is to protect a twenty-man combat communications team, a three-man fuels team, and a five-man maintenance team. All we are doing is providing security while the Combat Com monitors all communications activity along the DMZ. Washington wants to have the capability of making an informed decision, informed about what I have no idea. The com team is set up in the northern part of the area, and they provide their own security.” Beckman paused and looked at Jake. “As you can see on this layout, I have divided this place into two sectors, north and south with thirty-nine men per sector. That’s two thirteen-man squads, plus the quick reaction team, QRT, for Alpha sector, and the same for Bravo. I am assigning you to the QRT in Bravo sector and Bravo sector alone.

Jake studied the crude drawing of the base and it’s lay out. “Yes Sir, bravo sector, Sir.”

“Any questions so far?”

Jake thought, “Are the men ready for what’s coming and the choppers; are they available all the time?”

“They are our supply life line, making runs to Osan and bringing back the things we need, and as for the men, are they ready for what, there’s nothing to be ready for.”

Jake heard his statement about not believing a war is coming but he thought he’d say it anyway, “Ready to fight sir, you know, for war.”

Beckman looked at him as he now realized that Jake was going to be a problem. “As I said, Sergeant, war is not coming it is all just a bunch of talk. Oh yes, there is one thing I need to mention.”

Jake looked at him. “Yes sir.”

“We are not supposed to be here.”

“Not supposed to be here,” Jake said a little puzzled. “As in . . .”

“That right, as in . . . covert. And I might add, as a covert op I aim to keep our presence unknown, any other questions?”

“Covert,” Jake said.

“Yes, covert.”

“So you say Sir that no one knows we are here?”

“That is correct.” Beckman said.

“Sir, how did you get here?”

“We convoyed up in two and a half ton trucks.”

“And no one saw you?”

The Captain knew where this was going and he put a stop to it. “We are here covertly, period.”

“Covert. Yes Sir, but why. What reason do we need to be covert? You said a war is not coming but,” Jake said, “if that is the case then there is no reason for us to even be here or to be covert. However, everyone else says a war is coming and on the twenty fifth, which means that if North Korea holds to their intended time line, we can expect something to happen here and soon.”

Beckman could feel his face starting to turn red and said adamantly, “Sergeant Anderson, there is not going to be a war.”

Jake stood there thinking that this attitude, will, if it hasn’t already, be transferred to the men and that means death. Denial will lead to complacency and that can destroy an Army’s will to fight and that is not good. “Sir,” Jake said wondering if the Captain would agree to what he was about to say. “I’m no expert, but my understanding of air base defense does not adequately prepare men for actual combat, peace time activities yes, but combat, no. However, I believe I can help these men be more effective offensively and defensively, and if it’s okay with you Sir,” Jake felt at this moment he was about to step out on a limb but gave it a shot anyway, “We can begin patrolling.”

Beckman looked at Jake with total unbelief. He’d just told him this was a covert operation and here he is trying to ruin it. He hated guys like this and wanted to make sure he knew it. Are you that stupid? “Sergeant,” Beckman said putting the emphasis on the word Sergeant, “You must not have been listening or maybe you chose to tune me out, so let me say put this in a way that even you can understand. This . . . is a covert operation and, it being covert, I don’t want us detected. And in order for us not to be detected, there will be no. and I repeat, no patrols.”

Even though Jake expected the response he still gave him that questioning look, “Sir?”

“Sergeant, I’m sure you think you know what’s going on. Two tours in Vietnam with a bronze star with valor. Your record is impressive, but not to me. So, don’t think you can give me advice. I am in command here, and I am not going to have you, or anyone else for that matter, tell me what I should or should not do. The only reason we are here is to provide security and security only. Is that clear?”

The Captains blatant disregard for sound doctrine was utterly insane which made Jake want to hurt the Captain, but he kept his composure. “Sir, I’m not sure how long you have been in the Air Force or Security Police, but I’m sure you had to have gone to a war college somewhere and learned the essential parts of securing a base. Patrolling Sir is meant to detect the enemy, provide intelligence and create an early warning. It is a sound tactic and we need to know what is out there.”

“Sergeant,” the Captain said emphatically, his anger building, “Let me clear something up for you right now because clearly you have not been paying attention. We have been up here on this station for six months, and in those six month, there has been no, I repeat, no, U.S. forces sent to re-enforce this country. Now wouldn’t it make sense that if the North Koreans were going to attack, that we would want to make sure they did not? Now I’m not the brightest bulb in the bunch, but the way I see it is the President thinks this guy is a big wind bag and he is just blowing smoke. Now, I say this so that you won’t go a starting any rumors, we are not at war, nor are we going to war, is that clear enough for you or do I need to write it in crayon.”

Jake stared at the Captain as if he had lost his mind and he hated the crayon remark, but as before he kept his cool. “Sir you yourself said there has been a massive buildup of North Korean troops all along their side of the DMZ, but then you turn around and say you don’t believe there is going to be a war. Respectfully Sir, you can believe what you want, but they are going to attack and when they do this place will be taken out. Now I can’t answer as to why we haven’t begun a buildup of our troops, that’s above my pay grade, but that doesn’t mean I can’t read the signs. The North is with a doubt going to attack. And if we are not ready, then . . .”

The Captain wasn’t listening to him. He said “so, Sergeant Anderson, you will confine your vast amount of ‘experience’ to where you are assigned and limit your duties to that. Is that understood?”

Jake paused for a second and looked dead into the captain’s eyes. This Captain wasn’t even listening, he just shut him off. He is totally nuts. “So, you think no one knows we are here, and you are dead set against patrols?”

“No one knows, and no war and no patrols. Like I said, I don’t want people to know we are here.”

“Sir, logic would dictate that the only reason we are here is because we are going to war. Sir, the enemy knows we are here,” Jake said trying to make an appeal to his military side.

The way the captain’s face contorted, Jake knew that he hated this kind of logic and Jake could see that he was trying to figure out a response. But before he had a chance to, Jake said, “Will that be all, Sir?”

The Captain looked at him with a scowl. He hated these smarty-pants Ranger types. “Yes. Lieutenant Campbell is your flight commander and Ops officer, and you will report to him in the morning. That’s all.”

Jake saluted, turned, and left the captain’s office thinking, this captain is crippled too high for crutches and with this kind of thinking he will be the one who orchestrates the death of this station. And to Jake that makes him the enemy of this station. And as far as the enemy, Jake learned a long time ago in the martial arts that you don’t telegraph your next move, that you should always keep your enemy guessing and that is just what he’s going to do with this captain.

 

 

Jakes arrival at Rebel Station and his meeting of the Captain. Amazon.com

So Jake finally sees his new home “Rebel Station.” Lets follow him now as he gets on the ground and heads in for his first meeting with Captain Shawn Beckman.

                                                 Reapers War cover 12.01.19

“That’s home,” Landis shouted and smiled.

Jake looked down. He saw the spot on the mountain surrounded by trees and the road leading into the south end, some smaller buildings, and what looked like the main building. He saw the bunkers and counted three towers, each about fifteen feet in the air.

Landis tapped him on the shoulder and gave him a thumbs-up. Jake nodded and looked back down.

The pilot made a radio call advising of their approach, then banked right and began his descent. Jake felt his stomach go up slightly and then they were coming in. As they approached, Jake looked at the main building. It was painted green and took up a huge part of the compound running from the west to the east. There was some camouflage spread over a few places and two wooded areas, one that came in from the west side of the compound and the other from the east. He thought that could be a problem. The pilot, being the expert he was, came in and hovered over an empty spot near the west perimeter, then lightly touched down and cut the engine. Jake’s left foot was already on the skid, but waited for a couple of seconds before he stepped off. Glad to be back on the ground, he reached in, grabbed his duffle bag and briefcase, and waited for Landis.

When Landis tapped him on the shoulder he said, “Come on.”

They walked the fifty or so meters across the pad to the main building. Jake thought it looked like an old warehouse in need of some serious repair.

“See that small attachment that juts out there on the end,” Landis pointed. “Well, in there is Rebel Base, our control center. Now, don’t be shocked, but when you go in you will probably see some familiar com equipment. I mean with your age and all.” He laughed. “But we really had no choice but to bring it, because it was the only thing available. To make matters worse, when we unpacked it to set it up, none of us could figure out how to turn it on, much less operate it. That’s when we got the com guys to come over, and in about thirty minutes, they had the antenna up, hooked up to the generator, boosted our power output, gave the controller some instructions, and, well, the rest is history.”

“So, what do you mean by my age and all, and what does that have to do with the equipment?”

“Well,” Landis paused, “the switchboard is an old SB-22/PT, and the radios are the AN/PRC 77s. We also have some handheld AN/PRC 68 bravos and some 128s. But as I said, you will see all that when you get into Rebel Base.”

“What about the power?”

“We have three 5000-watt portable generators. One we use for basic power, lights, and battery chargers. There is one at the building on the south end for the thirteen-man QRF, and we have one as a spare. Com has their own, so we don’t have to worry about that.”

“What about fuel?” Jake asked looking around.

“The fuel truck, parked under a shelter, has a capacity of about 2000 gallons, so we are good in that department,” Landis said, as he kept walking.

“What about water?”

“As fate would have, all we had was what we brought with us. We searched, but couldn’t find any. So, the Army was gracious enough to let us have three water buffaloes. We use one for drinking water and the other two for all of the other amenities. When we start to run low, we call ‘em up and they, come up here, pick ‘em up, take them, refill them, and bring ‘em back.”

They reached the main entrance on the east end of the building and Landis opened the door. “We, fuels, and maintenance have this building’s first and second floors. I know it doesn’t look like much on the outside, but wait until you get inside,” he chuckled.

They walked inside into a long hallway that went the entire width of the building. There was a set of stairs that led up to the second floor. “The captain’s office is right here,” Landis said, pointing at the wall on their left. “You go through that opening right there and you’ll see his door. He’ll be a wanting to see ya. Now,” Landis continued, “see that opening there to your right about midway down? That’s the entrance to Rebel Base. The ell tee’s office is in there, as well. At the foot of the stairs, you can see another hallway, and it goes the length of this building. There are rooms down this side and down the other. Your room is the first one to your left and straight ahead from there is the squad room. But, I’ll wait right here.”

Jake nodded and walked the few feet to where the hall turned left. To his right he heard Armed Forces Radio Network, or AFRN. On a small am radio, he heard talk about the U.S. troop movements for redeployment toward the DMZ. Looks like I’ve jumped from the frying pan into the fire, Anderson thought once again. He turned back to his left and could see the door to the captain’s office was open. He walked to it.

Before Jake entered the Captains office he really didn’t expect him to be as Landis had said. But that was about to change.

“Come in, Sergeant Anderson,” the captain said rather harshly.

Jake noticed the sharp tone in his voice and looked at the open door. He dropped his bag, opened his briefcase and took out some information, and walked in. When he got inside he saw the captain and he was looking down at some papers. It looked to Jake as if he was just lost in thought, sort of like a thousand meter stare.

When Beckman finally looked up, he saw, standing before him, in pressed BDUs, wearing his beret smartly, a tech sergeant.

A Brand New Adventure:

Let’s see what’s happening with Jake. We see him arriving in the Country of South Korea, and as we will learn later on, it’s just 25 days until this new war with North Korea begins. 

Peace is Our Profession, War is just a Hobby. 

May 31, 1985: 

In war – nightmares and reality coexist – and for a combat soldier it becomes very difficult to determine which one is which. The worst part is when the nightmare actually is reality.

As the flight from Japan to South Korea continued, Jakes thoughts drifted back to another time, another war and remembered a dream where he saw the foreboding figure of death, the destroyer of men, aka the Reaper. He was very much acquainted with this figure because he’d seen him up close and personal and it terrified him. He remembered when . . . Jake opened his eyes at the sound of the pilot’s voice over the intercom. He looked around him and then down at his watch. He was finally here, in South Korea and about to be in the nightmare of another war. He didn’t mind it really, after all he was Ready Eager and Prepared and has been this way since he joined the Air Force and went to Vietnam, or so he tried to remind himself. I will get off here and be transported to Kunsan, a place way down south and out of harm’s way, at least for a while anyway, he thought. He wondered just how long it would take for the war to reach him. He’d read about it and watched the news about it and believed from all those reports that it was true, but the question was, was it going to be conventional or was it going to be worse, Nuclear, and the worst factor or reality of all is the loss of life. Soldiers, American and enemy, along with civilians were going to die. And another unknown factor, China and Russia. If they get involved World War Three would surely be the result. He thought about the irony of a motto he saw outside of a Bomber Alert Crew billet, it read ‘Peace is our Profession, War is Just a hobby.’ For Jake the nightmare was about to get worse.

“Ladies and gentlemen,” the Pilot said. He told them they were beginning their decent and would be landing at Inchon shortly. He ended by saying, “Welcome to the Republic of South Korea. It is Friday, May 31st, the weather is cloudy, the temperature is 85 degrees, and there is some rain in the forecast.”

Jake checked his watch again. Twenty to twenty-three hours. I called the total flight time right.

As the big plane, referred to as a Stretch Eight, touched down at 0945, South Korean time Jake looked out the window. Even though he was air borne qualified he hated flying and was glad to be back on the ground. Smiling, he opened his notebook and finished his entry that started with the flight from Patrick Henry Airport in Newport News, VA, to the airport in Kansas City, a six-hour layover and then onto Washington State, Hawaii, Japan and now South Korea. He wrote a few more things then prepared to get off the plane and head for customs. That would probably take a little while, so he knew he would be waiting.

As Jake walked through the terminal he could feel the tension; and it was high. Of course the threat from the North Koreans was serious and the military wasn’t waiting on word from Washington, they were ready now. War was on the horizon – as a matter of fact it was knocking at the front door. For Jake the thought of another war brought two reactions, one excitement, the other, apprehension. In his mind, as was in the minds of anyone ever being in a war, there was nothing good about it. Death and destruction are never good.

He followed the other passengers through the terminal toward the baggage claim area. As he walked along the talk sounded strange. The people spoke in a mixture Korean mixed and English, which to him made it sound, all jumbled up. He noticed as well that there were more Security Police than normal patrolling and stationed at strategic points. He smiled because these men were trained and ready. These men were the finest and no matter what they would give a good account of themselves.

Finally reaching the baggage claim area, he stood where he could watch for his bag. It had special markings on it making it easier to spot when it came around. After about five minutes, he saw it, grabbed it, and threw it over his shoulder. He looked for the customs sign and headed in that direction. He checked in with all the other military personnel and proceeded through the main area and into the holding room. There he went through baggage inspection and received an in-country briefing. The group was informed about what was allowed and not allowed in country, the usual security policies in place, and the current threat level. The thoroughness was not surprising.

First Sergeant Pete Steel of the 8th Battalion, 75th Rangers, out of Camp Page, stepped onto the bus that was headed for Kunsan Air Base. He found a seat about midway and sat next to the window. With the war coming the Air Force had requested someone be sent to provide some additional and last minute combat training to the Security Police there and they wanted the trainer to be a Ranger, so he was selected.

It was 1230 when Jake cleared customs. The customs inspector told him about the bus leaving for Kunsan in about fifteen minutes. He closed his brief case, picked up his duffle bag, and walked outside. He found the bus and gave his duffle bag to the driver to load into the cargo compartment then he boarded. He walked down the aisle to about the middle and stopped. There was an empty seat next to an Army First Sergeant. Jake noticed the patch, 75th Rangers. “Mind if I sit?” Jake asked, looking down at him.

The Army First Sergeant, who sat by the window, looked up, and then pointed, “Have a seat.”

Jake put his briefcase in the rack above him and sat down. He stuck out his hand and said, “Sergeant Jacob Anderson, Air Force Ranger Combat Security Police.”

They shook hands.

“Didn’t know the Air Force had any Rangers,” the Army First Sergeant said. “Pete Steel, US Army, 75th Rangers, roll tide, whoo-ah.”

Roll tide. Another Alabama fan, Jake thought. Jake was a Georgia Bull Dog fan, so he just smiled. He had no idea that he and this sergeant would meet again and very soon.

“Where you headed, Sergeant Steel, US Army, 75th Rangers roll tide whoo-ah?”

Steel smiled at how Jake said his name, and then at how he added the, “US Army Ranger roll tide” to it. “I’m on my way south to some jack leg Air Force Base,” he said, returning the sarcasm. “To help some jack leg Air Force cops with some real deal combat training …” He paused for a second. “… And you?”

“South as well, to Kunsan.”

Steel smiled. “Well, alright.”