Two Unarmed Members of the US Military Foil Armed Terrorist



You cannot exaggerate about the Marines. They are convinced, to the point of arrogance, that they are the most ferocious fighters on earth – and the amusing thing about it is that they are…You should see the group about me as I write- dirty, bearded, their clothing food-spattered and filthy- they look like the castoffs of creation. Yet they have a sense of loyalty, generosity, even piety greater than any men I have ever known. These rugged men have the simple piety of children. You can’t help loving them, in spite of their language and their loose sense of private property. Don’t ever feel sorry for a priest in the Marines. The last eight weeks have been the happiest and most contented in my life.

 Father Kevin Keaney, 1st MarDiv Chaplain, Korean War

Marines are apparently pretty dangerous even when they are unarmed and confronting an armed enemy:



A massacre on a high-speed train in France was prevented Friday when two U.S. Marines in civilian clothing surprised an Islamist militant, a senior European counterterrorism official told CNN.

The suspect was loading his automatic Kalashnikov rifle in a toilet when the two Marines confronted him, the source said.

The gunman fired on the Marines with a handgun, the official said, wounding at least one of them. Three people were injured aboard the Thalys train traveling from Amsterdam to Paris, authorities said.

The Marines overpowered the suspect, who was placed under arrest when the train was rerouted to the town of Arras, about 115 miles (185 kilometers) north of Paris. One of the Marines was wounded, the Pentagon said.

The gunman, a Moroccan national, was on the radar screen of European counterterrorism agencies for his radical jihadist views, the official said.

Go here to read the rest.  Prayers for the recovery of the wounded Marine.



Well, as usual in this type of event, the details were fouled up in the initial report:

Spencer Stone, who is part of the U.S. Air Force, spotted the 26-year-old Moroccan acting suspiciously and heard him trying to load his weapon in the toilet of the high speed train between Amsterdam and Paris.

He was travelling with Oregon National Guard member Alek Skarlatos, 22, who was on leave and traveling through Europe at the time after returning from a tour in Afghanistan.

With the help of their friend Anthony Sadler, from Pittsburg, California, and fellow passenger British IT consultant Chris Norman, they managed to wrestle the attacker to the ground, stopping what could have been a deadly terrorist attack.

Now, Mr Sadler has revealed the attacker pleaded with them to return his AK-47.

He said: ‘He was just telling us to give back his gun. “Give me back my gun! Give me back my gun!” But we just carried on beating him up and immobilised him and that was it.’ 

The men have since been commended for their bravery by President Barack Obama.

Apparently the French on the scene thought that Stone and Skarlatos were Marines from the way they charged in.  So a salute to the Air Force, the Army National Guard and the two civilians, Sadler and Norman, who helped.

Update II:

From Jazz Shaw at Hot Air:

The bloody and chaotic scene on the train seems to have played out pretty much as CNN describes it above, with Stone and Skarlatos initially charging the gunman. In the ensuing battle, Stone was slashed across the back of the neck and nearly had his thumb cut off. He was taken to a French medical center specializing in the treatment of hand injuries and is expected to recover. And it’s a good thing that the Americans stepped in because the early reports indicate that the staff on the train turned and fled like sheep when the trouble started, barricading themselves in their staff room and leaving the passengers to fend for themselves. Yay, France.


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  1. In all seriousness, we need to start one of those White House petitions to get the wounded Marine the Purple Heart he earned in this minor engagement in the Global War on Terror.
    Unarmed Marines(in Civvies, no less!) taking on an armed terrorist, they deserve some kind of decoration for that.

  2. The gunman, a Moroccan national, was on the radar screen of European counterterrorism agencies for his radical jihadist views, the official said.

    Hmm. Another case of a “known wolf”.

    Secondly, ever notice that those who favor so-called inclusive language in so much else still can’t let go of the word “gunman” and use “shooter” instead? Let’s face it, the inclusive language police are not out to erase sexism but to impose their own idiosyncratic sexism–a sexism that is soaked with hatred of men. Notice that when a man does good he’s referred to by the inclusive language police in a neutered way, police officer instead of policeman, firefighter instead of fireman, but when a man does bad they make sure he’s loudly declared to be a gunman not a shooter.

  3. That European gun control worked ouy real well, didn’t it?

    BTW, one report this morning says they were National Guardsmen, not Marines. While being subdued the terrorist whined “Give me back my gun!”. Think about it: if this is what Guardsmen can do, then this terrorist is lucky they weren’t Marines.

  4. When regular US citizens will attack terrorists on commercial airplanes knowing that their act of resistance will result in their own deaths–yet still determined to fight–you KNOW our Marines (& other military members) are bad ass!

  5. When the terrorist asked for his AK-47 back, it should have been given back to him, in a place where the crescent moon doesn’t shine!

  6. GOD BLESS these brave men for they are true hero’s!!!!! We all need to be alert and stand together to keep each other safe from these evil sick people.

    In the end Good will win over Evil I just hope many more innocent people aren’t killed before this happens.

  7. I like the update– National Guard and a blessed Zoomie! Good on ’em. SOMEBODY actually paid attention with all the pre-leave situational awareness briefings!

  8. Greet them ever with grateful hearts.
    Soon enough the White House will open an investigation as to whether the brave men violated the Rules of Engagement . . .

  9. I was waiting for the White House response to be the Muslim in Charge ( Barack) telling us to recall the bad things done to poor Islamic people, by the hands of those rotten Christian’s. Maybe another fairy tale of the crusades by the rainbow President.

    This act of bravery is everything Barack Obama is not! I’m with PWP. Death to any radical islamists.
    Death then waterboarding! ( that was for Mel Brooks.)

  10. I believe the Oregon National Guardsman was from 1/186 Infantry, which was recently deployed. They’re from Southern Oregon. If not, he would have been from my old unit, 2/162 Infantry. It used to bug me to no end when regular Army would insult us for being National Guard. Oregon National Guard has been deployed over, and over, and over again, and now this. This soldier is a credit to his unit, and to all those part-time soldiers who stand ready to protect us from harm.


    Charley Company out of Roseburg and yes, just back from deployment; does that make sense, Alphatron? I’ve seen on twitter where he was described as being 2-162 INF and in the 41st Infantry. (I know that in the Navy it’s possible for all of those to be accurate, especially right after an activation and deployment, but I have no idea how the Army works, much less the National Guard.)

  12. Yes, that makes sense. 1/186 and 2/162 were both deployed to Afghanistan. They encompass the southern and northern halves of the state, respectively. But a member could be in a unit in another part of the state if they enlisted where they could find an opening, or if they moved after enlistment and couldn’t find a new unit. Information on various units can be found here:

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