Conflict starts again in Kagun, at smaller scale
There’s 1 year and 23 days ago, a massive coup in the young blossoming socialist nation of Kagun, that killed 4 Nanakian Peacekeepers, launched one of the largest NSDF military campaign abroad since the end of the Cold War. The arrival on June 19, 2018 of the UNOE Coalition Forces, composed of the 2nd Argentine Expeditionary Brigade and the Allexandrettan 25th Marine Corps, projected the scale of the conflict into something of global interest. In a few months, the Allied Forces were able to repel the rebels at the Cythus border. It was at this time that, moreover, an unidentified civilian plane was captured by the Argentine Air Forces, after being surprised to dump supply crates in the middle of the forest. The results of the interrogation of the suspects is still today kept secret by the Argentine military intelligence. The case will be closed later on. It was precisely 228 days ago that the rebel command declared the end of hostilities, marking a return to calm in Kagun. The Allexandrettan and Argentine forces withdrew from the conflict, and the NSDF resumed its peacekeeping mandate, but this time, with a whole new division in its strength, and with nearly 14 FOBs all over the back country available.
About two weeks ago, a humanitarian convoy was taken hostage by heavily armed paramilitary forces, targeting civilians. In a video statement, the local operations chief of the NGO in question was beheaded. The terrorists' demands call for a reconsideration of Kagun's sovereignty and his government. The next day, armed criminal actions multiply and entire groups of people disappear in the forests. The Ministry of Defense fears a resumption of hostilities and they were right to fear.
We are going this week as closer to the fight as we could, in the 23rd parachute regiment deployed in the north of the country. This regiment, more than any other, is specialized in shock and surprise war. Often projected by night, and behind enemy lines, these soldiers are not afraid of anything and will stop to nothing. We followed them during a collaborative training with the local forces that the NSDF is trying to train. Their mission was to locate an enemy target, in order to coordinate a HVT exfiltration. The insertion is discreet, by helicopter, flying at low altitude and landing at nearly three kilometers to hide the noise. On site, the soldiers camouflage themselves and wait nearly two hours the arrival of their target. Kagun's forces are in charge of his protection, and are supposed to clear the scouts (with blank shots of course). But during all of the mission, they will not be noticed. The record is exasperating for the recruits: They did not see the scouts, and their HVT was captured during the assault planned later by the rest of the NSDF section.
The presence of civilians is an other stress factor for the soldier,
they fear that they could be endangered
Further south is the 14th Marine Corps. Today, Corporal Hishigawa embarks us on a patrol mission through a few villages. Accompanied by an armored vehicle, we are eight highly equipped members to get out of the base. The first kilometers are calm, and the radio is silent. Hishigawa answers our questions.
I arrived here 8 days ago, we replace the previous platoon, I will do my 5 months, then I will certainly return, except exceptional case. The regiment must have been there since the end of the first hostilities I believe, it replaces the 77th Marines.
Are you afraid of the risks that your job entails?
Yes of course, yesterday, a lad was repatriated for serious injury, but he escaped without much trouble, so I nuance. Anyway, I have confidence in our equipment, and our training. In a few months, the first conflict did "only" 1 death, I don't know if it's a lot, but compared to the number of enemies who fall, I tell myself that there is little chance for me to end eating earth. Anyway, during the action, adrenaline takes over and I don't really think about it anymore. We rarely talk about it together with the other lads.
The radio indicates the presence of thermal contacts in the next village. The drone operator is positive, they are armed. The stress goes up. We stop at the village ,just before the enemy one, we check our equipment, and the vehicle commander tries to coordinate his GPS to find any advantageous position set up an overwatch. A farmhouse a few meters above will do the trick. The armor is positioned so that only the turret is visible, in case it should respond. The squad disembarks and equips with its binoculars and rangefinders. The vehicle commander scans the area with his thermal cameras. Calm returns, the rebels must have seen something and fled.
But still, this does not reassure the squad leader who warns command by radio that the enemy has a visual on us, but that we don't have any on him : they have to be preparing an ambush. As a precaution, a fast vehicle comes to extract me. I learn later that the squad ended up spotting the rebels who had hidden under bushes in the forest, with rocket launchers. Spotted by the drone, a attack helicopter treated them. About 11 enemy found dead, for no allies wounded.
Thanks to the Task Forces Command, the 23rd Paratroopers and the 14th Marines.
I. Ikihushi, for the NBC
Copyright NBC, 2018