Stanza 168


The tenth battalion entertained no doubt
That the insurgency was not without
Support from all the people in the town.
The helicopter that had been shot down
Had been harassed by local residents,
And townfolk signaled the belligerents
By waving flags whenever LAVs
Passed their location. Then with RPGs,
The rebels set the ambushes to kill
Marines. The shock of so much death was still
Less horrifying to them than the news
That all the villagers perceive abuse
Instead of kindnesses marines had done.
All the enlisted men had thought they'd won
The people's trust, until the crowd allied
With the insurgents. Such an act implied
The villagers were so irrational
That friendship with them was impossible.
So while the brass procrastinated, they
Awaited the inevitable fray.