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April 21, 2004

The Magnificent Bastards

The "Magnificent Bastards" is the moniker of the historic Second Battalion of the Fourth Marine Regiment. Rush Limbaugh read this message at the end of his show today. It was written by the 2/4's CO and upon hearing it, i was filled with pride and gratitude at the power and sacrifice of these wonderful Marines:

Early in the morning we exchanged gunfire with a group of insurgents without significant loss. As morning progressed, the enemy fed more men into the fight and we responded with stronger force. Unfortunately, this led to injuries as our Marines and sailors started clearing the city block by block. The enemy did not run; they fought us like soldiers. And we destroyed the enemy like only Marines can. By the end of the evening the local hospital was so full of their dead and wounded that they ran out of space to put them. Your husbands were awesome all night they stayed at the job of securing the streets and nobody challenged them as the hours wore on. They did not surrender an inch nor did flinch from the next potential threat. Previous to yesterday the terrorist thought that we were soft enough to challenge. As of tonight the message is loud and clear that the Marines will not be beaten.

Today the enemy started all over again, although with far fewer numbers, only now the rest of the battalion joined the fight. Without elaborating to much, weapons company and Golf crushed their attackers with the vengeance of the righteous. They filled up the hospitals again and we suffered only a few injuries. Echo company dominated the previous day's battlefield. Fox company patrolled with confidence and authority; nobody challenged them. Even Headquarters Company manned their stations and counted far fewer people openly watching us with disdain. If the enemy is foolish enough to try to take your men again they will not survive contact. We are here to win.

What kind of enemy is it who thinks they can fuck with the Marines and win? If you ask me, i think the enemy is fully aware that they are going to their death when they attack the Marines, and that's why they attack.

i found another article about the 2/4 in Iraq, which is interesting because of the contrast in tone. Where the piece written by an actual participant is filled with resolute pride, the piece filtered by media bias exhibits a more somber, defeatist tone.

'I didn't sleep. I lay in the bed,' Oety recalled, sitting alone with a cigarette after a Marine memorial service Sunday.

The American deaths fell most heavily on Oety's 2nd Battalion, 4th Marines Regiment, a storied unit known as 'the Magnificent Bastards' that hardly needed another infamous battle on its resume.

Five died from just one 13-man squad ambushed on a road they patrolled every day.

'I can't stand that area,' said Oety, 24, of Louisville, Ky. But Oety did what his battalion is known for: plunging back in.

The contrast between the two perspectives is striking to me. Journalists, for the most part, are gutless, ignorant hacks. It doesn't surprise me that a journalist would focus on casualties, rather than accomplishments. Journalists don't understand what our soldiers, marines and sailors are doing, nor do they want to. It frightens them.

Update: Blackfive contrasts AP and Reuters coverage of the so-called cease fire.

Posted by annika, Apr. 21, 2004 |
Rubric: annikapunditry


Well said.

Posted by: Tim on Apr. 21, 2004

I'll tell you why the journalists reporting are such gutless, clueless, hacks. Their templete is the Viet Nam War. Not to mention their editors are refugees from that era who've never grown up. Hey, I lived it. Was college student during the mid-70's.

What they're not getting is this--different times, different enemy, who wants you and I dead. Period. End of story.

Eloquence means nothing.

Posted by: joe on Apr. 21, 2004

I remember the day in al-jubayl, saudi arabia in Feb of '91 when a reporter stopped by weapons repair shop I ran to see if anyone wanted to give an interview.

One PFC offered to go in front of the camera the reporter's side-kick was carrying. The first five or so questions related to who he was, where he was from, and what he did.

The best part came shortly thereafter when the reporter asked if the PFC felt guilty that his job might help inflict death and injury on a kid his age in the Iraqi army. The PFC replied, "I count on it because that is my job.

If I could shoot the f**kers myself I would. It would get me home quicker."

I gave the PFC the day off after the reporter and his side-kick ran from our shop in disgust.

Semper Fi, Marines. Semper Fi.

Posted by: jcrue on Apr. 21, 2004

I'll tell you something about our USMC. A friend of mine signed up to be a marine six years ago, but when he couldn't pass the physical tests the first time, they almost deferred him to the army corps. Not the kind of person to relent to anyhthing, he worked his butt off and got buffed up. Then he went through and passed the physical. I was there with him in the gym, and was wondering why he was working himself almost overexerting himself sometimes.

"It's the marines."

I didn't know what that meant until what I heard from the Iraqi commanders. When it was told the Americans were coming, they weren't surprised, but not too scared.

That changed very quickly when they heard the MARINES were coming too! They went to near panic upon hearing that.

Sure, I might never be buff enough to join the Marines (or have the nerve to join the armed forces much less. I know, I'm a coward, but I know who's brave and who's not, and I do salute them!) but after hearing that from my friends and recent events, I have thought twice.

Always Faithful.
Semper Fidelis

Posted by: Charles Hammond Jr. on Apr. 22, 2004

I was there in Ramadi, with the best. And I will tell you this. We are not war monging killers. We are marines and we do as ordered in our countries service so that the American people can wake up day by day and live their lives with the freedoms that we have today. And what does it take to have this you might ask. Marines and other branches of the service to go out day by day and put our lives on the line for what we love and care about most in life. Our families and our friends, and it takes a stable country to have this, I have been to Iraq so I know how good we have it here and what we all as americans take for granted. We take our freedoms for granted and we forget how the strength of our military has brought us what we have today.
Remember those who we lost over there, many were my buddies, and let their legends go on as heroes as that is what they are, heroes.
Semper Fidelis

Posted by: Lcpl grunt FOX CO 2/4 on Dec. 13, 2004

I served with Fox co.2/4 in Vietnam Fox relieved Echo co at the groucho marx battle near Cam-lo that is where Capt Howard V Lee earned his congressionl medal of honor.I have never seen a braver outfit than 2/4 I am proud to have served Semper Fi

Posted by: Philip L Hickman on Jan. 4, 2005

I have a real problem with Keith william Nolans book the magnificent bastards.Mr.Nolan is a good writer but,the cover of the book tells of a marine and army operation and they became known as the magnificent bastards,and I'm quite sure that the uninformed readers will come away thinking that the combined Army and Marine unit are the magnificent bastards.I am sure that the Army unit is a brave and noble group but 2/4and 2/4 alone are the magnificent bastards.Col.Joe (Bull)Fisher a veteran of Iwo jima gave us that name and we are most assuredly proud bastards.

Posted by: Philip L. Hickman on Jan. 7, 2005

I am proud to say that I have been to war with those Magnificent Bastards. I served as Golf Company's Police Sergeant for the 7 months we spent in Iraq. These men are my brothers and America would do well to remember that they are also thier brothers, husbands and sons. These men lived and died by the power of thier wills and the support of thier brothers. I will go to the ends of hell with these men, and make no mistake, hell would be for the taking if you put the Marines of 2/4 on the task.

Posted by: AKH GUNS-UP!! on Apr. 18, 2005

I am proud to claim the title as "Marine", just as I am proud to have been a member of the "Magnificent Bastards", these titles have been earned not given. People may look in disgust at my tatoo of the eagle,globe,and anchor with "Magnificent Bastards" wrapped around it. But those that know only offer thanks and praise. "Semper Fi" to all Marines, and especially those of Echo Co 2ndBtn 4th Marines

Posted by: J Smith on May. 9, 2005

I'm am proud to say I served in the greatest branch of the armed forces, The United States Marine Corps, and am the son of a career Marine who served with the Magnificent Bastards in Vietnam. They deserve all the praise and admiration we as a country can give them, because as Marines the 2/4 were hard charges that never gave up on a fight, and many stayed to the bitter end to fight along side of their brothers knowing full well the consiquences of their actions. Marines never leave their own and never back down from any challenge! Semper Fi!

Posted by: Mike Hudson on Jun. 9, 2005