BAGRAM AIRFIELD, AFGHANISTAN — Tragedy was averted today at one of the largest US military bases in Afghanistan after an Airman successfully stopped a ‘green-on-blue’ attack. Following a trend of attacks on U.S. forces by their Afghan counterparts, an Afghan National Army (ANA) soldier was able to smuggle a weapon onto the sprawling base and opened fire on several Airmen standing in a smoking shack.
Luckily for those present, the ANA soldier’s marksmanship skills were so poorly developed that he missed with all thirty rounds in his magazine, giving the rest of the Airmen a chance to run for cover and Technical Sergeant Ralph Johnson the chance of a lifetime.
He was wearing his 9mm Beretta pistol in a custom-embroidered leather shoulder holster, commonly referred to as a “FOB Bra.”
Typically regarded as the ultimate sign of a true FOB dweller — or someone who never leaves the perimeter of their base while deployed — there has not been a single documented case of a US military member actually engaging anyone with their weapon while wearing the scorned leather harness in almost 12 years of combat operations.
Unfortunately for Johnson, his inexperience with weapons and the fact that he had not removed the pistol from the holster to clean it during the entire four months he’d been deployed eliminated his chances to make history. The rotund NCO attempted to draw his pistol, but the forward sight notch became stuck as he struggled to bring his weapon to bear. At the same time, the ANA soldier, Private Mohammed Gul Mohammed, growled in frustration while he attempted to reload his AK-47, incorrectly inserting the magazine over and over again despite the hours of drills forced upon him by his ISAF trainers. As the sirens of the sprawling airbase’s Quick Reaction Force began to wail, both men glared hatefully at each other, knowing they only had moments left to finish their deadly business.
Finally, Johnson was able to remove his pistol and he smiled triumphantly as he pointed the weapon at his foe, a scant 10 meters away, and pulled the trigger. Nothing happened. Confusion clouded the NCO’s thickly mustached face until he realized that the safety was on.
He quickly corrected the situation, shouting “prepare to get your virgins!” at the still struggling Mohammed.
Misfortune struck the Air Force NCO again when he pulled the trigger and realized that a magazine had not been inserted into the pistol. A cold sweat broke out on the man’s face as he fumbled with the rusted buttons on his harness that hadn’t been opened since he first inserted the ammunition magazines almost four months prior. When Johnson finally removed and seated the magazine properly into the weapon he heard a deadly metallic click. Mohammed had also managed to successfully insert his own 30-round 7.62mm magazine into his AK-47.
Both men raised their weapons simultaneously, and with malice blazing in their eyes, began firing. Rounds cracked off of the concrete blast barriers, thudded into wooden roof supports, and ricocheted off the asphalt road as distant bystanders dove for cover, but neither man was able to hit his opponent.
Army Private Jared Taylor, a witness on the scene, gave his account of the gun battle.
“So I hear all this shooting and I run around the corner towards the smoking area. These two guys are standing there screaming at each other from about twenty feet, blazing away. One was a skinny little Afghan dude who could barely hold his AK while he sprayed rounds all over the place. He couldn’t hit shit. The other guy was this fat-ass Air Force NCO who was trying to shoot his M-9 one handed while he covered his face with the other. I’m pretty sure his eyes were closed the whole time. I’ve never seen anything like it. I just stood there laughing until they ran out of ammo. That’s when I remembered to shoot the Afghan guy in the head with my M-4. He was so close I couldn’t miss.”
For his actions that day, Tech Sgt. Johnson has been awarded the Air Force Commendation Medal.
Check out After Action with Max & Paul, an awesome new podcast featuring the creators of Terminal Lance and Duffel Blog.