WATCH YOUR STEP By Mick Murphy, 4 RAR/NZ
I suppose the scariest thing is the unknown. Like a lot of soldiers that
went to Vietnam, the one major factor in the back of your mind was booby traps. Like everyone else, I’d heard about the M16 Jumping Jacks, booby traps, Punji Sticks and other ingenious devices used by the enemy. “SO WATCH WHERE YOU PUT YOUR FOOT”.
But then again, maybe, just maybe, by the time we arrived in the country all the mines and booby traps would have been set off. For all the patrolling we did, we found no mines or booby traps. Maybe we could stop worrying a little. That was until we found a rifle in the fork of a tree. It had been set up as a trip wire (string) activated booby trap. How long it had been there, who knew, except maybe the person who’d put it there. The rifle was a bolt action, maybe French. There was no wood left, having been eaten away years before. All the metal was deeply rusted and the working parts were well and truly seized. A little bit of string still hung from the trigger. How long had it been in place? Who knew? But at the time the culprit must have had a good reason for putting it where he did. Maybe it was time to start worrying again.
If you can’t remember, the Claymore is pointed towards you.