By David MacKenzie
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Additional resources for Apis: The Congenial Conspirator, The Life of Colonel Dragutin T. Dimitrijevic
He had seen them before, and these ruts in the snow, too. The SEALs in the utterly dark cabin were staring out the windows at the ground through NVGs, which hung from brackets on their helmets and flipped down over their eyes, giving them an otherworldly look. For once they had not punched out the helo's windows in deference to the cold, and looked through the Plexiglas instead. One SEAL in the left door with the mini gunner saw the tracks in the snow, but before he could call them out, Mack was already up on the ICS.
Gunship, from a shocked reaction to a “softening-up” bombardment that fizzled, and by ferocious mortar attacks by an enemy that was not going to be easily routed anywhere, much to nearly everyone's surprise. The enemy fighters weren't as much in the valley, as imagined, as they were in the mountains looking down on the Americans through the sights of heavy machine guns and mortars. Making this already bad situation even worse, the highest American commanders had failed to equip elements from the 10th Mountain and 101st Airborne divisions with artillery with which to defend themselves.
After all, the local Taliban hardly needed satellites and computers to realize the advantages of mountains that they already knew as well as the faces of their children. Slab studied satellite imagery that by now was three days old. No snow showed on the peak in these pictures. He saw an old trench on the mountain peak that he assumed local fighters had occupied at one time, probably long ago. He did not plan to drop right down on the peak, in the unlikely event that an enemy force already occupied it.
Apis: The Congenial Conspirator, The Life of Colonel Dragutin T. Dimitrijevic by David MacKenzie