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May 24, 2006

H&I Fires* 24 May

Open post for those with something to share, updated through the day. New, complete posts come in below this one. Note: If trackbacking, please acknowledge this post in your post. That's only polite. You're advertising here, we should get an ad at your place...

In local news - the guys who went on the POW rescue mission that was the subject of the movie The Great Raid, will be having a reunion near where I live next month! I'm trying to get permission to attend and talk (heh, mostly listen) to these guys.

Marsha Goff, a writer for the Lawrence Journal World whets my appetite thusly:

By the end of January 1945, as Allied forces advanced against Japanese positions in the Philippines, the writing was on the wall for any Japanese military leader who cared to read it.

But as American forces neared Japanese POW camps, circumstances became more dangerous for the men. That fact was demonstrated at the island of Palawan when more than 150 Allied POWs were herded into air raid shelters, doused with gasoline and burned alive by their captors to prevent them from being liberated.

Concerns grew about the welfare of 512 survivors of the Bataan Death March imprisoned in a camp at Cabanatuan in the Philippines. A daring raid by an all-volunteer force consisting of 120 members of Col. Henry A. Mucci’s 6th Ranger Battalion, a dozen Alamo Scouts and more than 200 Filipino guerrillas — led by Captains Juan Pajota and Eduardo Joson — was engineered to rescue the POWs. The camp was 29 miles behind enemy lines through rivers and across roads that carried heavy Japanese military traffic.

The intelligence capability and firepower of the Filipino guerrillas — designated to protect the Ranger force’s flanks and cover their return with the rescued POWs — and the aid and intelligence provided by Filipino civilians were essential to the success of the mission. Without a friendly civilian population, the raid would have been impossible.

You want to read the rest - right here. -The Armorer

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On this day in History, the British Battleship HMS Hood met it's fate.

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On this day and this blog, someone forgot to sign their work... in other news, someone who's *really* peeved with the VA (I already have a credit watch in place because Sears suffered a Rectal-Cranial Infarct so I'm ahead of the game) over the idiot data-analyst who thought that taking home all that personal data would be a Good Idea. Who? The Crusade - who came to the attention of the Army even, and made it into the Stand-To blog mentions. Congrats, Crusader! Bitter? No, he's not bitter. Not the least. Nope. Not at all... - The Armorer

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*A term of art from the artillery. Harassment and Interdiction Fires.

Back in the day, when you could just kill people and break things without a note from a lawyer, they were pre-planned, but to the enemy, random, fires at known gathering points, road junctions, Main Supply Routes, assembly areas, etc - to keep the bad guy nervous that the world around him might start exploding at any minute.

Not really relevant to today's operating environment, right? But, it *is*

The UAVs we fly over Afghanistan and Pakistan looking for targets of opportunity are a form of H&I fires, if you really want to parse it finely. We just have better sensors and fire control now.

I call the post that because it's random things posted by me and people I've given posting privileges to that particular topic. It's also an open trackback, so if (Don Surber uses it this way a lot) someone has a post they're proud of, but it really isn't either Castle kind of stuff, or topical to a particular post, I've basically given blanket permission to use that post for that purpose. Another term of art that might be appropriate is "Free Fire Zone".