It's 0930 on 28 March 1943 and action is imminent. Having landed in Morocco back in November, the GIs of 1st Squad are rearin' for action. Or they were, at least, until their platoon leader, Lt Pelluer, came by with orders that almost assured the squad would finally see the elephant. Now in Tunisia, chasing an as-yet unbeaten German army on the run. The Germans were running north, for Tunis, but had already turned back several times to viciously swat the combined British and American armies in the west. The GIs huddled up, most of them nervously staring at the dirt, as the Lieutenant briefed their squad leader, SGT Cherry:
"Men, we're halted because our lead elements suspect trouble. The vehicles have pulled back but are keeping an eye on things, and we need you to scout up ahead and see what's what. There's a bombed out A-rab village up there, which the armored cars say has some Krauts a-runnin' around. If ya move quick, they'll probably haul ass back outta there. That's what they've mostly been doin' every time we've spotted them. Mostly."
In any case, the Yanks have crossed the line of departure and have jumped off into the attack...
Speaking of cowering in fear: over on the US right, one would expect Sgt Cherry to get up and display some leadership, get the right hook rallied and back in the fight. But even though the grenadier has got the German MG team hunkered down, the good Sergeant is unable to find his marbles, so he curls up next to Saxon, suppressed (two red beads), while German fire from the southeast continues to pour in, forcing Eatman down (white bead, with Petry pinned right behind him).
The US and German center positions continue to trade fire ineffectively...
But then a miracle happens! Okay, maybe not a miracle; the German left has already been shot to pieces (one man down, the other two curled up in the fetal position with no way for help to get to them), and the BAR has the two riflemen in the center suppressed behind the house.
Five minutes later, the kid Private had finally worn himself out and just sat, staring at the Sergeant, who couldn't find a single word to respond.
No one was decorated for bravery, but Petry proved himself a sharpshooter and a natural leader, and a feisty one at that! The Lieutenant promptly promoted him to PFC on the spot, and there was also a tip of the hat to Pvt Porter for his coolness under fire, popping the rifle grenade on the German MG position, then rushing out into the line of fire to help Pvt Graham. And it wasn't long before the Lieutenant heard tales of Sgt Cherry's cowardice under fire; he made a beeline to the squad leader, who got another five-minute long ass-chewing for his lack of intestinal fortitude. Then the Lieutenant went and snatched up Pvt Baldinger and had him thrown in the brig for ten days for abandoning his post under fire. The Lieutenant informed the squad Pvt Lowery was going to be okay: he was hit in the abdomen and would be out for about a month, but he was expected to return to full duty.
Hope you had a good time.