by BeijingIrish (2017-05-03 14:53:43)

In reply to: Did your vision narrow? Did time slow down?  posted by blarneygreen

On night ambush operations, the first few minutes after we beached the boats—sitting there scanning the ground in front of the boats with night vision devices, trying to be perfectly still, breathless, heart beating in your throat, copper taste in your mouth—were moments of sheer terror. We stank of fear (1).

I’m sure that we “blew the bush” prematurely on occasion because someone just couldn’t stand the suspense. They couldn’t either. One time, a NVA soldier stuck his face out of the nipa palm. He was about 5 feet away. The guy who shot him had pieces of his face in his eye lashes.

(1) I refer to fear pheromones, but it was said that VC could smell the shave cream and deodorant used by American GI’s. Probably an urban legend. I discussed this with the sailors in my unit one time. One guy, a second-class ship-fitter, said, "That's why I don't use that shit". RM1 Batten replied, "I sure wish you did use that shit".