FORT HUACHUCA, AZ — Military intelligence analysts train for years — honing their skills, plotting over maps, and studying reference sources. But one analyst of the 309th Military Intelligence Battalion has recently blended his real-world military training with his fascination of the HBO series "Game of Thrones."
While it may seem surreal, it was nothing short of epic for Specialist Andrew Rigbe.
He and his three-man working group had studied the night before, even locking themselves in the common room, poring over thousands of pages by flashlight.
"This is exactly what we're trained for," exhorted Rigbe, following his strategic briefing for a potential invasion of Westeros.
Westeros is already politically unstable. It had recently suffered a civil war and now faced possible invasion, assisted by traitors from within its trusted small council. The only trouble with this briefing was obvious to everyone but Rigbe: Westeros isn't real.
It's a land spawned from the imagination of George R.R. Martin's epic "A Song of Ice and Fire," before giving birth to its own series on HBO. The story centers around warring families vying for an iron throne. The practice of realpolitik is common place and military allegiances shift and turn. Important characters die on a whim.
Rigbe may have been safe if he stuck to the ongoing plot in the HBO series, but then may have mucked it up when he decided to get more obscure by using the most recent bestselling book, A Dance With Dragons.
It was clear Rigbe had brought his A-game to the briefing.
"Sir, we assess with high confidence that Jon Connington's landing at Cape Wrath represents a clear and present danger to the realm of Westeros, in the form of an exile Targaryen-backed army seeking to reclaim the throne for Aegon Targaryen. Buttressed by irregular forces, such as the Golden Company, Conington's invasion is in it's initial phase. His incursion force remains vulnerable, but there may be pending reinforcements, possibly from across the narrow sea, in Essos."
Rigbe continued the briefing with amazing enthusiasm, much to the dismay of most in attendance who, unlike Rigbe, have had sex with a woman.
"Sir, we also assess with high confidence the invasion can be put down, provided we rally forces in the surrounding Stormlands," Rigbe stressed, circling the area with his laser pointer. "We can then call banners from Kings Landing and reinforce them, while holding a larger force in reserve to repel any surprise attack, most likely from a larger force, led by Aegon's rival, Daenerys Targaryen, the first of her name, aka The Mother of Dragons, hereafter referred to as Dany."
For the next hour and a half, Rigbe used detailed slides to include "enemy leadership bios" and a dire warning that "Dany's three dragon air support could wreak havok on a level equal or greater to that of a napalm strike."
His briefing was not well received by the senior leadership or -- anyone that doesn't have 'Magic: The Gathering' card sets in their footlocker.
"This is gayer than cum on a mustache," said Master Sergeant Louis Barber. "Syria's unstable. Israel might strike Iran. North Korea is still testing missiles. I am sitting in an hour and a half briefing to repel an invasion of Westeros. It's a miracle the republic hasn't fallen. Besides, I don't have time to read. We should just watch the show after we're done with briefings. Why is that so hard?"
No word yet on whether Rigbe's briefing contained spoilers for The Winds of Winter.