CH4's Dispatches-Bravo's Deadly Mission.(USMC on Operation Mushtaraq,Afghan Feb 2010)

#1
Tonight,7th Oct 2010,Channel 4 at 2100Hrs.

Dispatches - Bravo's Deadly Mission - Channel 4

In February 2010, US Marines launched the biggest operation since the start of the war in Afghanistan: Operation Mushtaraq. Bravo's Deadly Mission covers hour-by-hour the entire operation to liberate the strategically vital town of Marjah in February and contains some of the most intense fighting footage ever caught on camera.

Filmed under extremely dangerous circumstances and in the toughest conditions imaginable, this Dispatches special is an extraordinary human story and an unflinching portrayal of war at first hand.

Operation Mushtaraq was massive news all over the world when it happened. But only one journalist was with the Marines inside Marjah. Ben Anderson spent two months with Bravo Company 1/6 Marines, eating, sleeping, running and sweating alongside them every step of the way.

The access he achieved and the 50 hours of battle footage he obtained is intimate and unprecedented and forms the basis of this extraordinary film. The result is unlike any other war documentary: personal, intense, incredibly close-up and dangerous.

Bravo Company was the first and only platoon dropped into the centre of Marjah. These young Marines found themselves in a maze of IEDs, bunkers, trenches and ambushes, set by very well-trained fighters.

The film features strong characters such as Captain Sparks, a Special Forces veteran of Falluja, Haditha and Afghanistan who's charged with seeing the young Marines in his charge through to the bitter end of the operation. Thoughtful and insightful, Sparks knows this is the most dangerous mission of his life. He knows they will lose men. He knows he takes responsibility when that happens.

Made by a BAFTA and Grierson award-winning team, the film returns to Marjah four months after the original invasion to find IEDs again being laid just 2km from the Marines' base, Taliban fighters, including snipers, still active and mobile, and a local population that is far from won over.

Bravo's Deadly Mission is a breathtaking film that shows just how dangerous and difficult the situation in southern Afghanistan has become, and how hard it will be to turn around.
 

Goatman

ADC
Book Reviewer
#5
On now

V-22 Ospreys loading marines and pre-briefing: Coy Cdr ' all the rock drills we have done will go to waste....you WILL have to make decisions....I guarantee we will lose Marines'

ROE mean they cannot open fire unless they are engaged...they have to watch and wait as fighters are dropped off all around them
 
#6
Anyone else wondering why they are pushing the ANA fellas around & generally treating them like shit? I know they need sorting but i thought mentoring was the order of the day. I trust our OMLT deployments are better behaved. From what i've read we seem to be working more as a team with them. Treating them with a lack of respect seems to me losing the long term war before the battle is even won.
 
S

Snoreador

Guest
#7
Bits did strike me a little as 'send them in first' at times... However, I must say that the general impression of the marines which comes across in this documentary is a world away from the typical 'jarhead' often portrayed in the media. Gripping viewing.
 
#8
I think it is a pretty good view but as professionalism goes, I can't say much.. They are pushing the ANA around and taking the piss of killing the Taliban, you could see the ANA soldier at the start, he didn't agree with that. Most of the guys just seem like they want to get home and get on with their lives and the people don't seem to appreciate what is being done for them. I feel bad for Mohammed though, was he really 20? He was a good laugh lol good show overall though..
 
#9
Bits did strike me a little as 'send them in first' at times... However, I must say that the general impression of the marines which comes across in this documentary is a world away from the typical 'jarhead' often portrayed in the media. Gripping viewing.
I hope that is a positive comment!
 
#10
I thought they were highly professional and you could have swapped there uniform and capbadge with any British unit doing the same job, a true depiction of life on the ground
 
#11
'kin hell that was really really good, and yet depressing at the same time strikes me as equal to swimming uphill in a sea of treacle. I doth my cap to those guys
 
#12
I've seen a few fly-on-the-wall documentaries based upon the military in Afghanistan and they all seem to have similar themes. On the ground our soldiers (and the americans in this case) are totally professional and to be admired. They are willing to take the fight to the taliban and usually win. Interesting to see just how determined the us marines were in there efforts to prevent civillian casulties and yet still failed. Yet by the end, once under the rule of Afghan govt police and troops the civilian population seem very unhappy. Until this changes I can't see how the taliban will ever be defeated.

Sad to see in the end credits that the little guy Mohammed had been found beheaded in September - presumably done by the taliban?
 
#13
It is so long since I served that I am not really qualified to give an opinion on the tactics being employed, I thought that the shot of them all waking up in the morning was revealing, there was kit everywhere it looked like they had been there a month. I cannot believe a British unit would be so lax with their personal admin. I did not like they way they went about their business, but they do seem to get the job done all brave lads and the bomb disposal fella is clearly equipped with a proper set of minerals.
 
#14
I found that rather depressing for a couple of reasons
a) I never realised how much the indiginous population resented us being there
b) As someone has already pointed out, the way in which the ANA are ridiculed, pushed around and litterally thrown through compound entrances did not seem like a great attempt at mentoring and training your exit strategy.
 
#15
Good film with a happy ending, that dwarf was a reet annoying little ******.

"Oi Knickknack, get to **** you're giving away my position".
 
#16
Good film with a happy ending, that dwarf was a reet annoying little ******.

"Oi Knickknack, get to **** you're giving away my position".
Are you mad, he was great craic!! What age was he actually, thought he was just a kid when he first appeared and he went walking out to show that there was no mines/IEDs, gotta give it to him for that!! Taliban cnuts!!
 
#17
Good film with a happy ending, that dwarf was a reet annoying little ******.

"Oi Knickknack, get to **** you're giving away my position".
Jimmy Krankie had minerals to wander into that open ground to show there were no IED's.

I must say that I would have wanted to keep that captured mauser.
 
S

Snoreador

Guest
#18
I hope that is a positive comment!
It certainly was!

Edit: Of course, my comments come from one who hasn't served, so I can't comment on the finer (or indeed, coarse) points of soldiering. However, to people like me, it came across very well albeit with the odd 'hmm' moment (pushing the ANA around a bit, etc).
 
#19
Good lads all.
Ruperts seemed switched on as was the EOD bloke.
Target indication was as good as ever (not!) but I'd have worked hapilly with em.
One hell of a shame about Mohammed. Bloody typical.
Generally a pretty good show!
 
#20
Thanks to all-I feel a bit like a blind man relying on others. Much appreciated.
 

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