Monday, April 28, 2014

In Defense of the Stabby

The bayonet still has its place...

A Bayonet Charge Saved A Whole Lot Of Lives During The Iraq War
Brian Wood was just a young lance corporal at the time when he dismounted his thin-skinned vehicle amid withering enemy fire, and followed his commander's order to fix bayonets.

The order came from from Sgt. Dave Falconer, reports The Sun and BBC, who later said he was proud of the actions from his men that day.
Lt. Col. Dave Grossman, in his book "On Killing," references the innate human reluctance to kill one's own species. It's an inherently useful feature, useful in that it allows us to continue to exist while advancing as a species. Rather than constantly looking over our shoulders for the next attack (which we should kinda be doing anyways), we have sufficient failsafes such that we can do more than simply survive.

The psychological effect of watching determined men, armed with essentially sharp sticks, rushing your position while you rake them with machine gun fire, has *got* to be significant. In a battle such as the "war" on terror we are currently fighting, our enemy thinks us, by and large, to be weak, ineffective creatures.

I think these men and their bayonets might have changed some hearts and minds with that charge.

That is all.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad


Bubblehead Les. said...

My Buddy the Surplus Dealer (whom you met Saturday Evening while working) told me that his MP Unit Fixed Bayonets several times while in Iraq. No Charges, but more for Crowd/Riot Control. He tells me it worked out "Just Fine."

Respect the Blade.

Old NFO said...

That they did... No question... :-) And MARINES...

Scott_S said...

Cold steel tends to be an attention grabber for those on the pointy end.

I never understood just how impressive and scary 150 people charging with fixed bayonets is till I watched a Basic Training video from my time at Ft. Jackson.

I would imagine that 10 charging an ambush would be almost more frightening.

Jim said...

Bullets, moving faster than can be seen, tend to be abstract, and don't trigger a visceral, personal reaction.

Blades, and especially bayonets, do!

The bayonet has that huge lever-arm behind it. You just know it's going to hit a lot harder, and carve a lot deeper, than a mere knife in the hand.

Plus, the length of the rifle keeps the bayonet user just a wee bit out of the reach of the recipient.

And as for changing some hearts n' minds? I'm sure at least one heart was changed.... opened, so to speak.

This would be a good thing.

Sunk New Dawn
Galveston, TX

PA State Cop said...

Bayonets should be shiny and long and scary. so the Foe knows what's coming. ;)

Geodkyt said...

I agree, PA State Cop -- or at least "matte stainless" but still in teh white (only problem with the USMC OKC3 bayonet is that the blade is blackened).

Bayonets are a terror weapon, designed to attack the enemy's will.

Even in the days of muzzle loader, where "Cold Steel" was the inevitable end game of any assault, more lines were broken by the bayonet with fear than blood.