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Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler » Not all heroes carry a rifle.
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It is night. It is dark..not a star to be seen.. You are aboard a KC10 Extender fully loaded with fuel.

Iran is on your right.A major, big ass thunderstorm is on your left.

You go right, you get shot at.

You go left,the storm will tear you into confetti…if a lightning strike doesn’t turn you into a fireball first….

And then the windscreen starts glowing.

24 Responses to “Not all heroes carry a rifle.”
  1. Unregistered Comment by toropoop

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    Damn! Once again, a little something to demonstrate that OUR GUYS IN THE MILITARY, REGARDLESS OF THEIR POSITION, ARE THE FRIGGIN BEST!

  2. LC Duncan Avatar Comment by LC Duncan Avatar

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    Bah, KC-10 extenders.. tanker pukes. Yeah, we need ‘em, and they do their jobs well, probably the best, at them. But you guys need to find some footage of the C-130 guys. Ya know, the guys who actuallly LAND in a combat zone, not fly over it at 26,000 feet… Plus, I know of a time that a Kc-10 flew INTO iranian airspace (not too far though, just enough to have egg on their face and not get shot down) to avoid a thunderstorm…. OOPS…

  3. SoCalOilMan, LC Comment by SoCalOilMan, LC

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    Up until this, I just thought of them as “tanker pukes”, but to watch them fly through that crap while sitting on top of a couple thousand pounds of jet fuel gave me a slightly new perspective.

  4. Unregistered Comment by T

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    Makes me glad I kept my feet on the ground. (Cannon Cocker) The idea of flying through a thunderstorm strapped to a bomb with wings is not exactly a winner for me…

  5. LC NCLivingBrit Comment by LC NCLivingBrit

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    Anyone willing to fly a mobile bomb into a combat zone need to nothing else to prove their bravery, IMO.

    I didn’t realise the weather was trying to get in on the act too though.

  6. LCBrendan Comment by LCBrendan

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    Try one hundred thousand pounds….or more

  7. Unregistered Comment by mindy1

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    VERY impressive flying skills-good going. How DO they stay cool under pressure, and even mug for the camera??

  8. LC Mrs. M-ITT™ Comment by LC Mrs. M-ITT™

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    You know…there’s nothing more comforting, calming, or inspiring than men in a bad situation doing their jobs with calm assurance, quiet professionalism and not letting fear turn them into whiny wusses.

    Not to mention it’s hot, Hot, HOT! Men like that crank my tractor every time!

    Take that Silky Pony, you Metrosexual Pansy Ass Wuss!

  9. thetay Comment by thetay

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    I found myself admiring their nerves… and then began marvelling at the design of that aircraft, too. Yikes- what it takes to throw that much weight around and still stay together; it impresses the hell out of me.

    Of course, them staying cool like that makes me feel like a wuss for getting all concerned about a couple minutes of trans-Pacific turbulence in an A320.

  10. LC JackBoot IC/A-OBR Comment by LC JackBoot IC/A-OBR

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    VERY impressive flying skills

    Considering in that type of convective weather, the pilots are only providing a tiny vote in the altitude/direction/attitude of the aircraft. The updrafts and downdrafts in those storm cells can cause un-freaking-believable altitude changes as well.
    IOW-That shit flies the plane you’re just a passenger with lots of switches and dials to monitor.

    Civilian aircraft wouldn’t even consider punching through a storm of that magnitude.

    Then you have the NOAA WC-130 “Vomit Comet” flights into hurricanes on purpose.

    Big.Brass.Ones.

    Thanks Brendan-

  11. Orion Comment by Orion

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    Just makes a good reminder that it takes an entire TEAM to win. Those Falcons and Eagles can’t do the job without the ‘Tanker Pukes’ - how many wounded birds made it back to base because one of those flying gas stations gave ‘em back that fuel they were bleeding out the holes in their aircraft?

    Cannon cockers? I dunno about you, but if I were infantry (I’m going to be Army Aviation - 15U), the thing I’d want to hear MOST is artillery…OUTBOUND. Give the other guy a really bad day while I sit nice and safe. Either that or one of those Dumb A$$ Tankers to come by and run over ‘em for me. An A-10 would be nice too.

    And no matter the unit, having food, medical care, mail, fresh water, clean clothes, computers, intel on when and where to move, parts, fuel, transport, and all the rest is a requirement.

    No part can long function without all the others working in concert.

    Every last one of ‘em has a pair that likely needs a wheelbarrow. Read about the truckers hauling freight through Iraq too…

    Orion

  12. LC Wil Comment by LC Wil

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    Five Bucks says the plane needs new upholstry on the front seats. Somebody’s ass bit a hole in the leather on those two . . .

    ORION:

    Army Aviation - Helecopters, I presume? Any clue which one yet? (Just wonderin’ - they are all fun.)

    DO NOT tell your instructor pilot “You can’t scare me.” Yes, he can, and yes, he will. Trust me on this.

  13. LC Gunsniper Comment by LC Gunsniper

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    Makes me glad I kept my feet on the ground. (Cannon Cocker)

    Same here. Manning the Ma Deuce on an M548 loaded down with gear and enough red bags to send myself and the driver to Valhalla is peanuts compared to that tanker vid.

  14. jaybear Comment by jaybear

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    I watched this video this morning, then went into school and showed it to my classes….those kids thought it was “awesome”. So do I, not only the vid, but the guys in that aircraft….how cool and professional do you have to be to fly through hell like that and still take the time to video the whole thing….Jeeeezus, reminds me of the B17 crews who would film fighter attacks while fighting them off at the same time….

    big brass ones indeed

  15. Orion Comment by Orion

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    LC Wil,

    CH-47 Chinooks - Probably the D model - with A Co, 5/159th up here in Ft. Lewis once I make it through AIT.

    Oh,I KNOW they can. I’m a fixed wing pilot (solo’d student, haven’t flown in about 5 years), and I’ve definitely got a healthy respect for any aircraft’s ability to kill me. My instructor once told me, “Helicopters don’t fly. They’re simply so ugly the Earth repels them.” LOL

    I can’t WAIT! I’m a bit nervous about BCT since I’m 43, but I think I’ll make it through. I love what those Chinooks can do. If I can’t be in the field, I’m happy to be bringing the goods - 14 tons at a time! - to the ones who are. I’m really hoping I get AVUM rather than the AVIM or Depot when I report to my unit - I want to get to fly on those birds. Gimme a door gun!

    Orion

  16. LC 0311 crunchie Comment by LC 0311 crunchie

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    Now I know why I loved being in the infantry so much. At least on the ground you can kill whatever is trying to kill you. And being a Marine means that St.Elmo’s Fire is a good thing! It’s been a harbinger of good luck to sailors since time immemorial. Aviators, not so much apparently.

    Hey BC, any of that video look familiar?

  17. Emperor Misha I Comment by Emperor Misha I

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    Damn, those pilots have testicles of titanium!

    I wouldn’t go near a storm like that in a simulator, so in real life I’d be hunting for a chute while puckering up my sphincter with all of my might.

  18. Ten-Ten Comment by Ten-Ten

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    And all this time I thought St. Elmo’s Fire was just a really bad movie…

  19. Unregistered Comment by T

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    Yo - Crunch -
    Why is St Elmo’s fire lucky? What’s the scoop?

    T.

  20. Unregistered Comment by T

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    And Orion -
    Check. Don’t matter if we wore Green, Blue, White, Camo or jeans, we all wear the Stars and Stripes with PRIDE and we all play on the same team. Keep ‘em level, bro.

    T.

  21. LC 0311 crunchie Comment by LC 0311 crunchie

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    T

    Yo - Crunch -
    Why is St Elmo’s fire lucky? What’s the scoop?

    St. Elmo, also known as St. Erasmus, is the Patron Saint of, among other things, sailors, mariners, navigators, danger at sea, and oddly enough ammunition workers. He was disemboweled in 303 during the persecutions of Diocletian (he is also the Patron Saint of abdominal pain, appendicitis, and stomach diseases).

    Sailors believe St. Elmo’s Fire is an omen of good luck because it tends to occur in the dissipating stages of severe thunderstorms when the most violent surface winds and seas were abating. Thus, it is interpreted as the answer to the sailors’ prayers for heavenly intervention. Its appearance preceding a storm or during fair weather portends that the guiding hand of St. Elmo would be present.

  22. BobF Comment by BobF

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    Those in the “Tanker” world have an acronym: NKAWTG.

    Nobody deploys anywhere in the world by air until Tankers prepositioned to enable the “Air Bridge”. Fighters cannot stay aloft to support ground forces without Tankers orbiting to provide air refueling. Their would be no F-15’s, F-16’s, or A-10’s in theater without a Tanker to “drag” them across the Pond.

    Nobody Kicks Ass Without Tanker Gas

  23. LC Wil Comment by LC Wil

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    Orion:

    You will love the Chinook. Ride like a caddy, nice stable platform, and in the “D” the computer makes it really hard to mess up too badly.

    You will be doing a lot of troup haulin’. Get to know some of them, and they will appreciate your job more. A lot of “aviators” (as opposed to pilots) just drive the bus, and could give a shit about the breathing cargo.

    I once told a Blackhawk pilot that my stomach was stronger than his nerve. Bad move. Did you know a Blackhawk will pull negative collective? Yep - drops like a stone. Leaves yer stomach about 500 feet over your head.

  24. Unregistered Comment by tfbncc

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    Boy, does this bring back memories. I spent 20 years as an enlisted aircrewman on Navy P-3C Orions. Flying through a storm really gets your attention. St. Elmo’s Fire is fun to watch as long as it stays outside the airplane. I watched one time as a huge ball of sparks formed just behind the flight engineer’s seat in the cockpit then when it was about the size of a basketball, it started drifting down the passageway in the aircraft. It went right through my buddy Skeeter who was unfortunate enough to be standing in the aisle. Think of it as sticking your tongue inside a light socket then multiply by a factor of 10! Knocked Skeeter for a loop and left him gasping on the deck.

    As someone else mentioned, when you get into weather like that, your just along for the ride.

    Bravo Zulu to the AF pilots and boom operator for laughing in the face of danger. It’w why they pay us the big bucks, LOL.

    Ray