“I was a designated marksman in the Marines. It’s kinda like a sniper but not really. You get a pretty nice rifle with an optic and it basically gives your squad or platoon the ability to reach out and touch the enemy a bit further than your average rifleman. We had this kind of fucked up game going with our machine gunners to see who could touch the enemy the furthest distance out. So far our machine gunners had gotten the furthest kill at about 450 yards. I was laying on a rooftop and had ranged a few buildings at 650-700.

One morning one of our patrols pushed out and myself and a few machine gunners were on the rooftops just giving them over watch for as long as we can. The patrol starts taking shots, and I see movement in that group of buildings I mentioned earlier. Bro, when I say the competitive part of me got giddy when I saw a rifle in a dudes hand, I mean I got giddy.

I looked through the optic, adjusted for the range, and fired. My target fell to the ground and rolled over onto his back. His rifle was still in his hands. I was trying to control my excited breathing to take another shot when I saw little puffs of dirt start flying up around him.

It was those fucking machine gunners trying to poach my kill. Before I could get another shot off, I could see their impacts and bits of the enemy fighter get blown onto the road. I looked to my right (where the machine gunners were located) and they were flipping me the bird. I still count it as mine.”

– Anonymous US Marine. 2nd Marine Division. Helmand, Afghanistan. 2011.

This story was documented by Battles and Beers Every soldier has a story, and every story deserves to be told.

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