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from Love's Critical Ground by L.K. Thompson, LTC (Ret.)

Copyright © 2017–2021 Lasrry K. Thompson

Chapter 27

2nd Infantry Division

Camp Casey, 15 km from the DMZ

In the tunnel

Near Dongducheon, South Korea

1030 hours Sierra



Comment of the Moment: “He aimed his SAW at the machine gun crew and pulled the trigger.”



Mungo crept silently out of the chamber with Aleumdaun following. Slover followed her with Cowboy and Dude after him.

The five lined up, equally spaced across the width of the tunnel. The DPRK soldiers’ attention was on the work area. The Americans watched where the Korean crew struggled to fix the electrical connections and to plug the muddy hole.

Mungo nodded at Aleumdaun, “Do it!”

She shouted, “Mugileul beoligo son-eulollyeo.” (Drop your weapons and put your hands up.)

Mungo fired a three-round burst into the tunnel floor.

In the enclosed tunnel, the blasts reverberated.

The DPRK soldiers heard the shouted command in Korean.

They heard the three-round burst.

With knee jerk confusion, they looked around the tunnel for the source of the command, and finally seeing the five soldiers at the edge of visibility, stood with open unbelieving mouths.

Mungo ordered, “Tell them to do it now!”

Aleumdaun shouted, “Dangsin-eun jigeum geugeos-eul hal.”

Major Yuneunghan tensed, as he prepared to order his soldiers to fire at the threat. His hand started toward his holster to draw his pistol.

With unexpected swiftness, Colonel Wanjeon grabbed Yuneunghan’s pistol hand. Wanjeon pulled his own pistol. He jammed it under Yuneunghan’s chin. He shouted in Korean at the DPRK soldiers, “Mugileul beoligo son-eulollyeo.”

In heavily accented, sub-standard English, Wanjeon shouted, ‘I want to defect. I make these tunnel. I tell you much.”

Aleumdaun shouted at the four Americans, “Hold fire. Hold fire. He wants to defect. He made these tunnels.”

The DPRK soldiers began muttering with rising anger.

The machine gun crew pushed their weapon around toward the five Americans.

Aleumdaun shouted at Slover, “The machine gun.” She pointed at the machine gun crew.

He aimed his SAW at the machine gun crew and pulled the trigger. The burst took out two of the three crew members. It nearly cut them in half. The third member, unharmed, fled the crew. He ran behind the nearby personnel carrier.

Cowboy and Dude fired once each. Two squad leaders went down.

Aleumdaun shouted again, “Mugileul beoligo son-eulollyeo.”

The DPRK soldiers dropped their weapons.

Wanjeon stood with one hand holding the Major’s pistol hand from pulling out his pistol. His other hand held his own pistol still jammed under the Major’s chin.

Wanjeon said again, “I want to defect.”

Mungo asked, “What the hell?”

He commanded, “Okay, everybody take this slowly.”

He looked at Cowboy and Dude, “Take the DPRK enlisted and put them in the little chamber with the bomb crate.”

He looked at Aleumdaun and said, “Captain, please tell the DPRK enlisted to go with Dude and Cowboy into the small chamber.

She shouted instructions in Korean.

The DPRK soldiers moved slowly, heads down.

Mungo asked, “Captain, can you go over to the two officers and take the Major’s pistol from him?”

She said, “I’ll try.”

Staying out of Mungo’s line of fire, she crossed over to the two officers. Standing beside the two, she could see the strain of the two officers struggling. One struggled to lift his hand with his pistol. He had joined the DPRK Army to kill Americans.

The Colonel did not want to return to North Korea. He knew that he would be thrown into the dog pound where the dogs would tear him apart. To his way of thinking, it would be better to defect and tell the enemy about everything he had accomplished. If they were to put him in prison, at least he would be fed every day, and would not go hungry.

Aleumdaun had approached the two struggling officers obliquely. She stayed out of Mungo’s line of fire.

Cowboy and Dude were herding the DPRK soldiers into the earthen chamber.

Mungo could see the two DPRK officers struggling with each other. He began walking toward the two to assist Aleumdaun.

Slover divided his attention between the DPRK soldiers, Cowboy and Dude herding the DPRK detachment into the chamber, and the two DPRK officers that Aleumdaun was now standing behind.

Deftly, Aleumdaun struck the DPRK Major at the base of his neck on the left side. He staggered once, seemed to lose his balance, and fell to the ground. She took the DPRK Colonel’s weapon, and he raised his hands.

Slover turned his attention back to Cowboy and Dude.

Suddenly, the DPRK soldier, who earlier had escaped the machine gun crew, ran from behind the personnel carrier. He grabbed Aleumdaun from behind. He held a bayonet to her throat. He shouted, “Dangsin-eun idonghaji anhseubnida. Naega geunyeoleul jug-il geus-ida.”

Then he said to Aleumdaun, “Dangsin-eun geudeul-ege.”

Aleumdaun hesitated.

He pressed the bayonet harder against her throat.

She shouted at Mungo and Slover, “He wants you to drop your weapons. He wants you to do it now.”

Mungo stopped. His mind worked furiously to find a way to change the situation.

The DPRK Colonel raised his hands above his head, and stepped back out of the way.

Slover stopped watching Cowboy and Dude. He turned to watch Aleumdaun, a confused look on his face.

Aleumdaun shouted, “Slover, Whiskey Tango Foxtrot.”

In Slover’s mind’s eye, he could see himself and Aleumdaun as they stood at the top of the mud slide hole. Her remembered she asked him what he meant by ‘Whiskey Tango Foxtrot.’ He knew she needed help.

He aimed his weapon. With grim determination, he began a stalking deliberate walk toward Aleumdaun and the North Korean soldier.

The DPRK soldier holding his bayonet at Aleumdaun’s throat saw Mungo with his weapon pointed at him. He saw Slover’s determination. He began pulling Aleumdaun back toward the personnel carrier. If he could get her into the personnel carrier, he could ge...

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