Saturday, January 23, 2010

Lucky Marine Steps on IED That Fizzles

I feel lucky if I find a penny on the sidewalk, or a good parking spot at the mall.

For Marine Lance Corporal Ryan Mathison, true luck is stepping on a pressure-plate rigged explosive that pops but fails to explode, saving his life and possibly the lives of several comrades in the area.

C.J. Chivers details the moment in time in his column, Foot on Bomb, Marine Defies a Taliban Trap in the New York Times. If you don't have Chivers in your news reader, now's the time to fix that.

As the Taliban increases the quantity and sophistication of their IEDs in response to the buildup of US troops in Afghanistan, our soldiers exposure rises exponentially, and happy endings are seldom found at the end of bomb stories. Except for this time. In this place. For this Marine.

Mathison won't need to get a haircut for the next several months, as his buddies will certainly rub his head for luck so often that new growth will be kept to a minimum. Grunts can be a superstitious lot.

Here's to Cpl. Mathison. Raise a glass to him the next time you are able.

Image via Wikimedia Commons

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