'The Taliban Were Ready For Us, But I Don't Think They Were Ready For What We Were Going To Do To Them'

Even as Coalition forces prepare to transfer all security operations to Afghan National Security by the end of 2014, U.S. troops are still fighting the Taliban every day.

Marine combat videographer Sgt. Eric Wilterdink recently released a video showing what that effort looks like.

Embedded with Marines from 1st Battalion, 9th Marines, Wilterdink showed a Nov. 6 mission in the southwestern Afghan village of Mama Karez.

This video shows a Marine counterinsurgency tactic for hunting Taliban that can almost be summed up as, “Here we are, hit us.” These guys go out fully expecting, even hoping, to get shot at, so they can find the Talibs and return fire. As one of the Marines interviewed in the video says, “We were going to be on the deck for 18 hours or so, so we knew eventually, they were going to hit us at some point.”

Once they receive fire, the video also shows the complexity of the Marine response. They call in close-air-support, fire mortars, coordinate with Afghan forces and British embeds. They flank the enemy, lay down accurate fire, then close in and capture them. There’s even a bomb-sniffing dog.

As Sgt. Aaron Alonso, a squad leader with 1st Battalion, 9th Marines said, “The fighters yesterday were definitely ready for us, but I don’t think they were ready for what we were going to do to them.”

Check out the video below:

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