Friday, April 08, 2011

Bad to the bone

Soldier Single-Handedly Beats Back Taliban Barrage.

Last summer, a single Gurkha soldier of the British forces single-handedly beat back a Taliban attack of 30 fighters in Afghanistan with just a chunk of metal and a sandbag after running out of ammunition. Sgt. Pun's extraordinary courage in Helmand province earned him the Conspicuous Gallantry Cross at a special ceremony in London:

Facing a surprise attack at a Afghanistan checkpoint, Sergeant Dipprasad Pun, 31, hoisted a 50lb machine gun off its mount to blast at the enemy.
When they kept coming, he launched 17 grenades and picked up an SA80 assault rifle, which jammed on him.
Then he threw the machine gun's metal tripod at his attackers, before fending them off with a sandbag while yelling in Nepali: "I will kill you!"
With nothing left to hand, the exhausted hero finally managed to fire off a Claymore mine, and the blast sent the enemy scattering.

Pun's medal citation said his actions saved the lives of three comrades and prevented the key military position he was guarding from being overrun.

"I was really scared but as soon as I opened fire that was gone. I knew I had to kill them.
"I thought they were going to kill me after a couple of minutes, definitely. Looking back at it, I realise I'm a very lucky guy, a survivor. It is great to get this award. I am very happy."
The sergeant in the Royal Gurkha Rifles told how he was on night-time sentry duty on September 17 last year when he discovered insurgents laying an improvised explosive device at the checkpoint.
He was surrounded and the enemy opened fire with rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs) and AK47s.
As the 20-minute battle raged, Sgt Pun raced onto a wall to remove the .50 cal machine gun from its mount so he could lower it enough to aim at the attackers below.
At one point he turned to find a "huge" militant standing behind him ready to pounce and Sgt Pun fired a final machine gun round at him.
He also fired his SA80 assault rifle, but the weapon failed just as another Taliban crept up on him. He said: "I threw it away and grabbed a sandbag to hit him but all the sand poured away. I had nothing left. Suddenly I found the metal rod and hit him with it.
"I threw it at him yelling in Nepali 'I will kill you' and he fell down. They were very determined. They kept coming and coming. In the end I was nearly collapsed."

Thanks to Woody for passing this along.


Anonymous said...

There are a lot of stories about the Ghurkas in a very similar vein, across all theatres that they have served. When my father was alive he would talk of their bravery in the North African campaign in WW2. Probably everything that is said of Ghurka soldiers is an understatement. The fact that the British Government treats them so poorly is particularly shameful.

wirecutter said...

Oh yeah, their bravery is well known.
It's funny though, this trooper doesn't look very tough - which is why I learned a long time ago to never fuck with anybody I don't know. Looks can be deceiving, huh?

Zilla/MJ said...

What an awesome story! Thanks for sharing it, I posted the link to it at that page I run at facebook:

dhann59 said...

With our RLULES OF ENGAGEMENT, a GI should have just rolled up in a ball and got hacked to death, I shit you NOT!...Petraaeus is not the Eisenhower everybody thinks he is... just another in a long line of PENTAGON PC FUKKSTIKS that would get your loved one killed, not a problem. MY last tour, The prevailing atmosphere was that S-3 OPS had NO PROBLEM WITH GETTIN'EVERYBODY KILLED!!! MY last rodeo in Iraq, out of 110 pax, 7 KIA, 40+ WIA, me included. Ask WIRECUTTER if you think I'm full of shit...

wirecutter said...

Derek speaks the truth. Not only has he seen the elephant, he killed the motherfucker.

Just John said...

Derek oversteps a bit...I can't think of anyone I know "rolled up in a ball," even Army dogs.

ROEs aside, the warrior spirit is still alive and well, thank you very much.

About the OP, kudos to that warrior; he's a real inspiration!

wirecutter said...

ROEs can be so fucking restrictive that a man wonders if he's going to be charged for doing the wrong thing. Hell, I've heard the same things from Vietnam vets.
That inter-service rivalry still exists, huh?
Good to hear from you, Jarhead. It's been awhile. Are you back in the States yet?
Yeah, the jarhead thing was meant in good humor.

dhanna59 said...

JustJohn, I love you brother, let me tell you a little story about one BAD-ASS 0311 combat Marine. Timeline: 1971. Vietnam. Hot LZ.Marines runnin for the treeline.Point man takes a through and through GSW. Gets thrown back on Slick.Bleedin' out. Medevac'd to CSH.Recieves multiple transfusions, surgery, etc. Recovers in-country. Returns to Unit. Completes tour. Kills MANY VC,RVN's.Comes home to job. Works 30+ years, with mystery health problems.Dies JUN 2008, Hepatitis from blood transfusions 1971. Got killed in RVN and didn't know it till too late. SGT James(Jimbo)Hanna. USMC. Deceased. My brother.Left wife with MS in wheelchair. A very happy ending.

wirecutter said...

Can't tell you how many VN vets I know that contracted Hep C from transfusions.
Sorry for your loss, Brother, really I am.

dhanna59 said...

Thanks Ken, comin from you, I know it means something.