The minister from Suleiman

Mark Conley

Active member
Normally, I don’t write stories about marines…but I have to make an exception in this case.

Every class we had at the doctors combat medicine training school always had a two squads of marines that would assist our Combat Arms folks in teaching the health care providers some of the intricacies of combat, movement and such. As a reward for their services, they would be given town liberty on the last night of the class, with instructions not to miss the boat that pulled out on Saturday to return them to where they came from.

We had just received a lucky group: Lucky because they had sweated months on Diego Garcia to win the chance to come to the course, and had beaten their whole float out. This was a very exceptional group of Marines; anything we asked them to do, they did with gusto and pride, as a unit.

They had learned from a previous marine group about being shafted by the local bars and such downtown; in truth, the young marines were often hit and took by them, as it was well known that our marines couldn’t put up much of a fuss due to the quick leave schedule they had from the course after it ended. The thing was, this group was tight with the other: its times like these that I have learned not to mess with a family, cause you mess with one, you have messed with them all.

The group leader had asked for some unusual support from the Charge of Quarters that night. One item was a full after hours black tuxedo; another item was the number of a local rental company that could supply a black stretch limousine. A considerable amount of activity was noticed going on in their encampment, but hey as long as they didn’t kill the doctors or molest the staff, what went on in their area stayed in their area.

I came on duty that morning as the new Charge of Quarters. Load out day for the doctors was always a mass of confusion, resulting in buses, cabs, and such arriving to pick-up their passengers. About 30 minutes prior to the Marines getting on a bus bound for the Airport, their commanding Officer came in looking worried. He was missing approximately 10 of his charges, and wanted me to call the local military pokey to see if his personnel had been picked up and incarcerated. Just as I was picking up the phone, what should I see go by the CQ office but this big black limousine that turned and was headed down to the Marine area at a very fast clip. Stepping out, I was just in time to see about 10 guys flying into the hutment, followed by an extreme amount of laughter and cheers. When the driver pulled up to where I was standing, he rolled down his window and told me “you call me anytime these guys are back in town. I want to party with them” and left. I informed the officer that his charges were back, and his embarkation could proceed when the bus got there. He thanked me and left.

When the head Sgt came back to the CQ to hand in his hutment keys, I asked him what the story was with the liberty. The story he told me was one step short of incredible.

The 10 men had decided to make those bars and establishments that had shafted their buddies’ pay back good for their inhospitality. Two of the men had brought their Dress uniforms, which they donned. seven other had scrounged dark suits from god knows where, and had dressed, as you would see a secret service agent dress, right down to a wired mike clip in their ear and dark glasses. The largest most dignified looking of the bunch donned the tuxedo with white gloves, a red satin cape and a four-ringed hat that Arab sheiks would wear. So dressed, they got the black limousine and drove towards town.

For each one of the offending bars and establishments on the list they had, the drill was the same. First, the "secret service" would enter and sanitize the front foyer, talking to the restaurant staff and explaining that they were the security detail for a little known prime minister of an Arab Country, the minister from Suleiman that was currently visiting the city. After the okay was given, the rest of the entourage, with the minister flanked by two dressed out marines, would arrive. Not only were they given the finest table and immediate service, but everyone just about fell over themselves when they learned the minister was looking to have several of his officers schools moved locally to the area. The marine that played the minister actually spoke Arabic and some other dialects, which lent even more authenticity to the visit. After they had visited for at least 60 minutes, they would attempt to pay but were refused, saying it was an honor to entertain such an important guest. Using these methods, they visited almost all the places on the list, and just barely got back to the hutment in time to catch their bus to the airport.

Well all-good things have to come to an end eventually: the real word got out about the visit of the minister from Suleiman, and there were some very upset people looking for the men who had pulled it off. Fortunately, they never associated our combat marines with this elegantly dressed group, and to my knowledge they totally got away with it.

Semper Fi guys…Semper Fi :D
It is difficulty for me to understand!

:( It is difficulty for me to understand,but still ,I should say it is a good article!