[Civil Affairs] AAR of the Month - Able Company

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My Dear Kasumi,

I miss you. I read your letters and I'm happy that we are able to send more letters to each other. I'm happy my family was able to take you in, trust me, you will love it in Hiroshima. I'm sure my little brother Akio will help you around. I have been looking for your brother Hiroo onoda; I can say that he was not at the Battle of Iwo Jima. I did find out he was some sort of commando or spy, but I'm not sure if he is alive or not.

Now back to me. My wounds that I got from the battle of Iwo Jima have been healing well, but it is not the wounds that I'm worried about. I have heard so many veterans talk about this "fire of a soldier." At the start of this war, I was scared to get shot, get killed, or get blown up. After fighting for a few months, I didn't realise that I was not scared anymore. I guess it is because the soldiers I was with were in it from the start. After 3 years of fighting I started to feel weird, I started to like war, I started to like the feeling of adrenaline rushing through my veins. I told one of the oldest soldiers in the platoon, he told me that I have to be careful and that only I can help myself.

Soon after that, I was sent to help to train new recruits on Iwo Jima to start the defense. I felt weird to see this recruits so new to this way of lifem but they seem committed. Our commander is Tadamichi Kuribayashi, a very skilled tactician. I saw him often just looking at the beach studying the Americans.

The battle had begun. After a few days of fighting, it didn't feel that bad. I had begun to enjoy it again. After a few months of no fighting, I tried to stop the feeling only it didn't help. After a few weeks, the battle was turning into a living hell. I was trapped on Mount Suribachi in the tunnels where there was no water, no food, and bad air. The flamethrowers burn out every tunnel, you can hear people screaming every day and night. I looked at the new recruits; they were scared, shaking, looking like they just had seen a ghost. I felt weird for not being scared.

After a few days of fighting in the tunnels, I was able to flee Mount Suribachi. I was able to regroup with a few soldiers and we made our way back to our lines. Everyone was looking at us like we were ghosts. They asked me "How did you survive?" I said "Hit but do not get hit." I had to visit the hospital. There were men with no faces, hands, fingers, hands, or eyes. I was not able to feel very emotional, this scared me.

I left the hospital and after a few minutes of walking around, I saw the same guy from my first platoon. He looked at me sad "Now have you felt the fire inside of you?" He then said "If you are not able to understand, listen good to me. Not every man has this fire, for some of us the wood is too wet to burn but with others the fire burns. At first it burns a little, just enough to see your hands. After some time, it's able to make you see them after battles of fighting victories and defeat. Your fire is able to hold you warm, but then it starts to grow bigger with every loss of friends, the sight of death, the smell, the feel. Some of us get burned and leave a burn mark for life, then others like the fire and keep it growing. Then some of us see the danger and try to extinguish the fire and it leaves burn marks for life that never go away. Few of us get consumed by the fire, living in it and can not go without it and when there is no fuel, you are left feeling empty and lost." I have reached this point and I'm scared to go home back to you and my family. I miss you, only I wonder if I would still be me.

Now that was depressing but I had to get it out my system. I have been transferred to an airfield called Yonabaru. There was this beautiful fishing village and I found something you would love. You are probably wondering what that tin is with wax on the sides. I found a floating lotus that I know you would love.

Well I'm running out of space on my note so hope to write you soon.

Diary 268 Yonabaru

I have been transferred to Yonabaru just a few days ago. We have intel from our scouts that Americans are advancing on to us. My new platoon has been good, they all know what they are doing. I have to keep it short I will update my dairy after the battle if they come.

Combat Diary 685 Yonabaru

We have to counter attack the village, the highest point of Yonabaru. We did not have any troops there because we thought that they were attacking the airfield. Seems like the Americans are not that stupid any more.

Combat Diary 685 A1

Our squad is ready to advance to the village to our left side with squad one. Those guys seem to love the machine gun.

Combat Diary 685 A2

We rushed to the village and set ourselves up in a building. There was a big hole that made it a bit more exposed than I liked. Seconds later a BAR gunner from an unknown position shot one of the privates. I'm not sure if he is alive. There was a bit of confusion due to a second BAR gunner that was shooting at S3 and S4. We pulled ourselves together and set up a defensive line with S1 on the left. With two machine guns, they did a good job of holding our flank and holding the enemies off for a moment.

I pushed across the street to a red building that was not shot to pieces so it gave me great cover and a good shooting point. I was ready to ambush them with my finger on the trigger, slowly breathing and adrenaline piling up. I saw my first target, he was crawling behind a flower bank. I shot him but he did not die so I quickly shot him again. A second target came into my sights. It was a squad leader, I shot him low in the guts.Then a second American was crawling towards the flowers who had no idea of my position, so I shot him right in the neck.
Then an MG appeared on the top floor of a broken workshop building. After I shot him he shot some panic fire, but luckily it was not aimed at me. My squad and the MGs covering our flank took some loses but I'm not sure from where.

After waiting for a moment, I realized that only my squad leader was alive so I hunkered down to get a better understanding of what was going on. Most of the squads were taken out...
Just before I wanted to leave and get them from behind, I saw an American across the street. It must have been the last survivor of his squad, but it was hard to see him because there was a tree blocking my view. I took a guest shot and killed him.

After that I tried to contact my squad leader, but he was killed so I went to flank the Americans who were trying to take the factory. I got around a corner and saw an American pulling a grenade out. I took my shot a bit hasty so I missed the first and the second, but luckily the third shot was a kill. Next I was going to the office building by the factory when I heard a loud bang. I was shot in the chest and lost conscience.

After Combat Diary 432

I woke up and was bleeding, but I got up and ran into a building. I patched myself up and wrote this note, but now I have to go and hope that I can regroup with our scouts. With another lost battle, the Americans come closer and closer every day, but he have to defend Japan at all costs. Like commander Kuribayashi said, "If we have to bleed, die, and suffer to keep Japan for only one more day, we will bleed, die, and suffer"
I only wonder for how long...

Report: PFC de Crom
Edited by: SSgt. Brewer and Cpl. Langford
Approved by: CoCA and Bn. S3

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Major Akulov,

We were able to intercept German radio traffic on 23/01/1943. Strangely the enemy used an unencrypted frequency which made us believe they were trying to set up a trap at first. According to the information we received, a whole platoon of German soldiers was set up near the building known as Pavlov's House and were running low on supplies. Not taking any chances, I ordered the remnants of my company to regroup two kilometers north of their presumed position. We arrived there at approximately 0930. To make sure we wouldn't run into a trap, I ordered two of my best men to scout the area out first. They were indeed able to spot German soldiers inside the buidlings and took some of them out. As I was informed of that, I sent in a few more of my soldiers. Seemingly the enemy was out of ammunition for anything else than rifles for we didn't take any fire from fully automatic weapons. Realising that, I ordered the rest my company to storm in and clear out the buildings. Even though we took some minor losses the operation can be considered a huge sucess.

Interception protocol compiled by Junior Sergeant Belinsky, translated from German into Russian

0734 – Viper, this is Beast, come in. Over

0735 – Beast, this is Viper, coming in. Over

0735 – Viper, the situation's critical. We are running out of food, have almost no ammunition left, our tank engines stopped working, I lost half of my men in an ambush and eight of them didn't wake up this morning thanks to hypothermia. Permission to retreat back to HQ. Over

0736 – Negative, Beast. Does the enemy know your position? Over

0737 – Negative, as I said we were ambushed by them while trying to cross a bridge. We laid down suppressive fire and retreated back to the central districts of the city. Right now we are holding out in a five storey building, there is no way they'll spot us in here. We need reinforcements as soon as possible. Over

0738 – Roger that, Beast. What is your exact position? Any landmarks there? Over

0739 – Affirmative, Viper. We are of few blocks southwest of the buidling known as Pavlov's House. Over

0740 – Copy that. We'll try to get infantry and tanks going there. Stay tuned. Over

0741 – Roger that, Viper. Over and out

0947 – Viper, this is Beast, come in. Over

0948 – Beast, this is Viper, coming in. Over

0948 – We just took fire from some of the buildings across the street. The enemy has managed to spot us somehow. There is no way we can hold them off all by our own. How long does it take for reinforcements to arrive from now on? Over

0949 – We sent them out one and a half hour ago. We haven't heard from them since then, Beast. Over

0950 – God damn it. Copy that. Stay up for now. Over

1002 – Viper, there are more and more Russian soldiers moving up on us. I told my men to spread out across the buildings but we are getting killed one by one from distance. I need artillery support right here, right now! Over

1004 – Negative, Beast. There are no bombers available for now. Try to hold your position, there is nothing we can do but wait for reinforcements to arrive. Over

1007 – Beast, are you still up? Come in. Over

1011 – Viper, this is Archangel. Beast is down. We are getting overrun by the Russians. There are less then ten of us up right now. Over

1012 – Copy that, Archangel. Stay there for now. Reinforcements should arrive shortly. Over

1013 – Negative. We are making a run for it. Over and out

The reinforcements the Germans spoke about never arrived, it is likely that they were killed on their way. As you can see the enemy is desperate. They won't be able to hold the fight up for any longer.
Stalingrad will be ours again shortly!

Best regards,

Lieutenant Valentin Yemelin

Report: PFC Ullmann
Edited by: Sgt. Lamb and Cpl. Langford
Approved by: CoCA and Bn. S3

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