Chapter 444

After we landed and exited the choppers, they flew on to Entebbe International. The spare was going back into the hangar fully fueled; it would receive a thorough post trip inspection – by the book – tomorrow, since the flight today was over 500 miles and the first long flight since leaving the shop.

The other one was coming back fully fueled in case it was needed for emergency embassy business. It needed a full tank.

After a long hot shower at the Hilltop Hilton and a change of clothes to much better clothes and get rid of the camp stench that followed you, we went back to the embassy.

There was a big dinner at the embassy tonight in our honor in traditional embassy style, with all the bells and whistles. This was the last evening for such activities; tomorrow night was the gala that we were going to. We were leaving early Saturday morning.

Ambassador Bernardi’s staff put on a five star five course meal; Ambassadors Dansky, Fauntroy and Morrison along with their wives and Fauntroy‘s daughters Caroline, Casey and Agatha were the only invited guest.

There was before dinner wine; even Rachel and Fauntroy’s daughters were given a small glass of wine. I was going to say something but didn’t because with Fauntroy’s daughters each having a small glass, I figured it was a customary thing and acceptable.

Ambassador Bernardi added with the toast, “I’d like to thank Ambassador Dansky and others for the fine selection of spirits used for tonight’s celebration.” I smiled and winked at ambassador Dansky.

Salad, steak, lobster and crab with all the fixings and luscious sweet desert made it a fantastic meal, with great conversation among old and new friends made it a wonderful evening.

Rachel, Robin, Caroline, Casey, and Agatha quickly became friends and were at the same table. There was chatter and laughter all night from them.

Vicky – on the other hand – was getting OJT on the other side of diplomacy by interacting with the Ambassadors and their wives in an official capacity.

Off to the side of the social conversations Ambassador Dansky thanked me again for the information they were getting from Randolph’s capture. Then he added, “My associate said there were some things you needed to continue your work. They will be placed in 17 tomorrow night for you to take on the return flight home.”

“Again I thank you for all the assistance you have given me; I don’t know how I shall ever be able to repay you,” I replied.

“The information we are getting connects many gaps in things very important to us,” he replied.

“When you get to Tel Aviv to see your security team at the US embassy, plan an extra day or two there. I have friends in high places who want to give you a private tour of historic Israel and Ben-David has friends there who would like to demonstrate some equipment to you and have other discussions,” he said.

“I will look forward to making the trip and I will plan on several extra days,” I replied.

We were joined by the other ambassadors and the talk turned to the war in South Sudan. I found out I was not the only one worried; all of them thought that the Ugandan government was too slow in responding to the approaching border threat.

Each day was going to be a challenge in the area going forward. I added more things on my list to do tomorrow and that was to have a conversation with Ambassador Furnell; he was closest to the fighting.

The socializing lasted another couple hours. Bob was keeping the adults entertained with the stories of his time in the Marines after the Vietnam War. Bob had a world of experiences as an officer at some of the best billets in the world. London, Italy, France, Spain Hong Kong, Manila, Seoul, South Korea, Osaka and Tokyo were only a few.

Some of those places I served at and the memories were not fond.

Things were winding down at 2200 so I asked Ambassador if I could use VCATS to call home. I could have made the connections at the motel but the embassy connection was a lot more secure.

I logged into my email and sent one announcing I was on the system. As I waited for them to key in, I looked at the email. Lorrie had sent one labeled important; it contained several jpgs; they were of the new plane with the JBG aviation decal on the tail.

“Is this what you wanted to see?” the email read.

The screen went live with the group around the meeting table. Lorrie was pumped; I could see she was going to be the first to talk.

“Did you get the picture I sent?” Lorrie asked.

“Looks great,” I replied.

“Can you send it to pick us up? We have too many things to fit in a G5 and it would give it a good shake down flight,” I said.

“It will be there Saturday morning; I have two flights early next week for it and another possible one on Friday,” Lorrie replied.

Jason and Jenny discussed the attorneys who were going with us to Minneapolis on Monday to the investigation; I was glad that one of them was Curtis Warren. He had a Perry Mason demeanor in the courtroom and shrewd sense of humor. At 6ft 8 and 250 lbs, he easily intimidated most people in the court.

The fact that Grandpa was a former chief justice and that Curtis had turned down a nomination to the court to stay in private practice said a lot about where his values were. He often said he loved to win cases and had no interest deciding arguments between lawyers who were not prepared.

I did not know it at the time, but Curtis had joined Jason deer hunting in the scrub in Robin’s absence and they were getting deer every night.

I listened and talked for another half hour before I signed off. Adam had been keeping Lorrie updated on the Air Force flight. Plans were made for Victor and Joni’s wedding. Joni had asked Jason to walk her down the isle.

I wondered what was going to happen with Alica; so far there had been no mention of what she was planning to do. She and Joni had been close. I hoped that there had been some discussion. I finally called Jenny asking that question.

After that I called it a night and the night crew carried us to the Hilltop Hilton.

0600 came early with my phone ringing. It was Ambassador Fauntroy informing that cots and tents had shown up during the night at Entebbe. Andy and I discussed the issue over breakfast and a few minutes later, the truck and trailer were headed to Entebbe.

Five of my men and five from the embassy were going to make the trip from Entebbe to Nimule with one SUV. Gordon was staying because he was my escort for the gala tonight.

A few minutes after that Ambassador Dansky called, “The pilots capable of flying the chopper arrived last night. If you want to send your pilots to do a check-out flight I will send them to 17.”

“Have them there in an hour,” I replied.

I sent the senior mechanic and the senior pilot from the embassy to check them out and spend time in the air with them.

One of the first things I wanted to do today was VCATS with Ambassador Furnell. I wanted to know the status of the embassy and my forty men there.

I spent all morning talking to every ambassador and my team leaders in the area. After lunch it was more.

At 1500 the hair dresser arrived at the hotel. Vicky and Robin were first and second. Rachael and I were next. The gala started with social hour at 1800 at the German embassy; Ambassador Schmitt was hosting. The German embassy was huge.

We were dressed and ready to party! We followed the truck and trailer into the rear entrance to the embassy. We were going to the German embassy as a group with Ambassador Bernardi and his wife.

They had had a productive trip and day; they had been able to carry all the tents and cots that the aid agency had sent. There weren’t enough for everyone, but it was a start.

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Chapter 443

I was in the Hilltop Hilton restaurant at 0400 finishing my first cup of coffee with Robin when all my men that were going with the truck and trailer came down for breakfast.

I was surprised that Robin was up but she had been full of surprises ever since the class. As soon as she heard the covers move and the bed squeak she was up. I guess it was the early morning hunter instinct.

Another surprise was that she had very liberated opinions about some things and rock-hard conservative opinions on others.

Another was that behind closed doors she was a nudist – clothes went flying immediately – and I had no problem with that. The first night it was midnight when we got to the room, but I was too tired to notice. I wanted to get into bed and asleep quickly.

As soon as we were in the room the next evening, off they came. To be liberated that far; still, I was amazed that she was sporting a full bush. When she saw that I was smooth, she said “I thought only young girls did that.”

“Always kept it smooth; I like it that way,” I replied. “Try it sometime, you will like after you get used to it.”

I did tell her the secret we used at home with over-sized tee shirts and sweat shirts by the doors in case anyone knocked.

The men ordered breakfast sandwiches to go; they were that anxious to get started on the trip. Robin and I rode over to the embassy with them to see them off.

I input the IDs of everyone going into the JBG card system. Then I demonstrated how to track the convoy to the people working the duty desk so they could respond if there was an emergency and described the pecking order of people who were to be notified. I also left one of the satellite phones and a call list for everyone that had one.

I had brought JBG ID cards for the guests with us and one each for Ambassadors Fauntroy, Morrison and Bernardi, but did not tell them why.

Back at the hotel I was having my second cup of coffee when the rest of came down. There was enough time for them to get a quick breakfast and then we met the ambassadors.

Andy insisted that the ambassadors be split up; two ambassadors went on each chopper. The flight was uneventful. Hanna and Sylvester were on my chopper. We passed over the truck and trailer about 50 miles from the camp.

As we got closer to the camp I could see the camp had grown since I was there last. I could see why – off to the north – as we made the circle around the camp at 10000 feet to make sure it was safe to land.

There was smoke rising on the horizon. It was a perfectly clear day so from that altitude I could easily see over a hundred miles and at the very edge of that distance tiny flashes of light that I knew to be artillery shells hitting targets. The civil war was on again in South Sudan.

I wondered how long the camp would be safe; it was only a few miles to the south Sudan border. Uganda regular Army soldiers and few UN peace keepers who were worthless were guarding the border. I wondered how fast the camp could be moved or even if at all, if the war came over the border.

“Kate: call the other chopper; tell them the war is back on in South Sudan. They need to stay high and do a sweep on the other side of the road for insurgents. Keep us high and fly a sweep a couple miles north of the camp,” I said into the headset mike.

Kate and the co-pilot were the only ones who could communicate directly with the other chopper. I could only call to someone in the other chopper with a satellite phone.

“Have the pilot verify that Fauntroy has called the doc to make sure it is safe. Then fly over the camp and look for anyone or anything unusual,” I added.

After an all clear from the Doc and nothing on the sweeps, we landed to the east of the camp. There was a little wind from the west that blew any dust the rotors kicked up away from the camp.

Hanna, Sylvester and Bob stepped out as soon as the rotors stopped turning, taking pictures and video of the crowd headed our way following the puttering old jeep.

Doc Palermo was happy to see us once again. After the jeep was loaded with all the meds it could carry, one of his helpers drove the jeep.

While he and I along with the other three ambassadors walked, we talked about the flare up in the fighting.

“The camp has grown by a thousand residents in the last two weeks. The Uganda government has promised more peace keepers on the border. A few hundred went through here the other day without stopping,” he said.

“We could use more cots and tents and other aid agencies have promised to get them to the Entebbe airport tomorrow morning,” he said.

“My men have a free day tomorrow. If it arrives early, they can bring a truck and trailer load,” I said.

Several groups of reporters from Europe were filming everything that was going on. Bob, Hanna and Sylvester soon found they were surrounded by those reporters wanting information.

Robin, Phil and Rachael did not escape being interviewed. I stood by and watched that they would not be pressured into areas they did not understand.

The jeep was steadily making trips back to the choppers, getting all the drugs that had been put in choppers into the containers; it took ten trips. Bob had made sure that he had plenty of pictures and video for Roger Gifford on the meds and praises from the staff.

The drugs had all been put away when the truck and trailer loaded with food and the medical equipment came to a stop in front of the tents.

The medical equipment donated by St. Agnes was the first thing to be unloaded off the trailer. The docs had known some of it was coming and another 4077 style Mash tent had been put up to house it. Some of the stuff was so heavy it took 6 men to carry it to the tent.

Hanna took video at my request of the equipment being unpackaged and set up. I would send it to St. Agnes for use by their PR department.

The ambassador title had gone a long way as I made calls asking for donations and anything that would help the camp. Dr. Palermo and I talked at length about future needs, both in equipment and food for the camp.

The food on the truck and trailer was the next thing unloaded and carried into the storage container. The truck was actually overloaded – if it had to go over any road scale in the states – but there were no such rules here.

It took all of us, excluding the medical personnel and the guards that I insisted Andy place about the camp. It took the rest of us and the staff three hours to put all the food into the container. With the leftover canned food that they had not used since the last food deliveries and other donations and the food we brought, the shipping container was full; stacked all the way to the ceiling this time.

The day was stretching on far too long; we had been here 5 hours. The truck and its escort crew had been on the road 5 hours to get here. They needed 5 hours to get back. It was past time for them to leave.

We held an impromptu press conference so the men could all participate; it was something all the international reporters wanted. Then we let Hanna do one for her station that included segments for the KCC and Rachael did one for the Advanced Education School.

I sent the truck and SUV on its way back to Kampala; an hour later we left with both choppers ourselves. The trip been good in many ways; Robin, Phil and Rachel had seen just how impoverished and destitute some parts of the world were first hand.

I saw the pain and disbelief in their faces as some stories of the children were translated for them; the struggle to survive and the loss of their family members in their escape from the civil war in Southern Sudan.

Vicky was equally moved by her experience today. At one point she tearily asked, “How does the staff look at and listen to all the grief and sorrow and not go crazy?”

“It takes a special kind of person to volunteer their time to come here and serve as doctors and nurses. It takes a very special person to keep coming back again and again,” I replied then added, “These are the kind of sights that will give you nightmares for long time if you are not strong.”

They also learned that starvation does not discriminate by race or sex, only by strength, with the strong taking what they want and the rest left to die.

As the choppers took off they made a circle over the camp. There was more smoke to the north and more flashes. I wondered if this was the last time I would be to this camp.

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Chapter 442

On the flight to the embassy, “This is most likely the last time I am going to be able to personally participate in deliveries to Nimule; I guess it will be your option how involved you actually are at going to the camp.”

“I know from the feedback I have gotten that Washington likes the PR. My men have said they would continue unless I directed otherwise. JBG intends to stay active in seeking donations and getting the items to Nimule,” I said to Bernardi.

“As long as there are things to go there, I will be involved,” he replied.

With my portable office in hand Vicky and I went to the communications room to start on the business of today. When Andy and the SUVs arrived, they were going to take the guests on a tour of Kampala.

First was a SVOL to Jenny, Ching Lee and Jason to get things in the works for Monday; they needed to decide who and which attorneys were going to Minneapolis. That call lasted almost an hour.

Then I called Cindy for an update on the rest of the embassies. The South American embassies had finalized the paperwork to send to Victor with their request for JBG security. ‘Good Luck with that,’ I thought.

Then I called Marcy’s office, her administrator said she and Lorrie had left early this morning for the west coast. I had forgotten that 2 PM in Kampala was 7 AM on the island and if they left early, that meant 4 or 5 AM.

Lorrie had been next on my list but I would wait on that. Then I thought better of waiting; after all the C5 was part of her business group.

I made the call to her cell and relayed the conversation I had with Adam; everything except the part about the kind of weapons they suspected they were transporting. I was positively sure that was super top secret.

Ambassador Bernardi had gone with the group to be tour guide. I had given Robin, Rachael, Vicky, Hanna, Sylvester and Phil each five hundred in twenties so they could get some souvenirs for family and friends if they wanted.

When the trip was laid out, there were no openings for a sightseeing tour of Kampala, but with the change to split up the food we had brought into three shipments two weeks apart, we had gained a full day and a half that was open

I gave them a few quick words of wisdom for carrying cash in rough foreign countries and bad places at home. Never carry all your cash in one pocket. Split it up between two or three; that way if someone tried to rob you, whatever pocket you pulled cash from they would assume that was all and run, or you simply handed them the cash out of one pocket. You would lose some but not everything. A pickpocket would be the same way, as soon as he found cash he was leaving; he was not staying around to check other pockets.

That gave me time to visit with the group here at Kampala; they had been brought in piecemeal. There were fifteen after the attack then the rest on the day I left. A little face time was due. I spent time with all the men and ladies who were not in their bunks.

I expected it to be dark when the group returned. The delay would give me time to start on preparation for Monday’s inquisition. Robert had loaded the same files that the Minnesota State Police Office received onto a large portable hard drive.

I had video that the State Police did not have and that was the thermal imagining videos. I flipped back and forth between those and the surveillance cams.

In the communication room I connected the equipment together to use the big 6 x 8 foot flat screen so I could get a good look at everything. With a notepad at hand I started watching, starting with the west cameras.

I knew the three two ladies and a man working the security console would be cranking their necks to look, but it really didn’t matter. They worked for me, were seven thousand miles from home and had also signed secrecy oaths.

12:45 Diya drove into the west entrance and the two women exited the SUV and loitered at the entrance.

12:55 they started walking towards the entrance.

13:10 the women had walked to within fifty yards of the building when they were challenged and blew themselves up. Fifteen minutes to blowing yourself up. What in the hell did they think about in those fifteen minutes? How do you convince yourself to do something like that?

13:12 the thermals showed they were wearing vests and two of my men challenged them.

13:13 the first one stumbled and exploded causing the other to detonate. I watched the video one frame at a time, trying to see why she stumbled.

I wondered if one of Andy’s men on the roof had put a bullet in her to keep them away from the field house. I looked for any sign that had happened. I couldn’t see anything but if the explosion followed milliseconds later, the naked eye would not see it.

The roof cams had audio: there was no sound of a gunshot that was distinguishable by my ear, but again – were they too close to separate?

I sent Robert an email giving the camera number and a range of time stamps. I wanted color photographs of each frame of the video of the two women. Then I wanted the audio run on an oscilloscope to see if it detected a gunshot before the explosion.

I watched it one more time in standard speed; seeing those two brainwashed women disappear in a fiery red blob turned my stomach.

I then looked at several more camera angles; that changed nothing.

12:55 Diya drove in the east gate behind the other two SUVs and let the other two out. Then he followed the first two SUVs to the back of the parking lot where they all got out and had a meeting.

13:00 the two had joined the line waiting to enter the building.

13:03 Ching Lee and I worked the line towards them.

13:12 I began with the first hit on my terrorist and then Ching Lee on hers.

13:14 the video was showing me disarming the suicide belts.

I ran the tape back and forth looking for anything I had missed on them or about them.

13:15 the two SUVs started towards the building.

13:15:30 the firing from the roof of the building started, followed by both of them exploding.

13:19 Ching Lee and I were running towards the entrance to stop Diya’s SUV from leaving.

13:20 I was pouring rounds into the SUV before it went through the fence.

The roof videos told the rest of the story with the massive explosions and a video record of all the collateral damage. Other than my curiosity about why the one on the west side stumbled, there was nothing that changed the events.

I got the pictures Ching Lee had taken of the explosive vest and looked at each one carefully; why, I did not know. It would take an expert in that field to make heads or tails out of the design and to connect it to a bomb maker or a trainer.

I would give Ben-David another day and then call him.

Then I watched the thermals from both East and West entrances; there was nothing there to change anything.

Marcy had included the SAP file for the excursion in my emails. The two weeks had cost JBG almost 1.2 million dollars. This included the five round trip flights from Morton to Minneapolis, all the extra scanners, the thermals, the entire RRT team cost plus the house Andy used a command center and auto rentals.

Even though we owned the rental site and the vehicles, no cost escaped Marcy’s calculator to put the charges where they belonged.

When Cindy’s clerks had time, I wanted a better cost figure of what the thermal scanner setups and manpower cost would be for each of the colleges. I was sure that at some point as the investigation was made public, that question would be asked from all of them.

I ended my research; there was nothing more to be learned from looking at any more video. The only thing that could be done now was to wait for the questions to begin.

The tourists were still not back so after a refill of my coffee mug I took a walk outside around the grounds. The circle and X on the old tennis court had been repainted and boxed in.

The sand on the volley ball court was much deeper; they had added several truckloads and it looked well used. A float was used to level the sand and several rakes were leaning against the embassy building.

As I walked around I noticed that there were still ball bearings lying around in places; we had picked up buckets of them as it was.

I was just stepping to the rear door when Ambassador Bernardi and the group came back; it was almost dark.

We had a feast at the embassy for supper; the cook went all out. After supper the plans for tomorrow’s trip were laid out. An early start was planned for the truck and trailer at 4 AM and the choppers leaving at 0730.

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Chapter 441

At 6:30 we were sitting in the Hilton Hilltop restaurant eating a limited few American foods. The hilltop catered to British and American tourists. Of course I was recognized and had to have pictures taken and autographs.

The embassy attack had been broadcast worldwide, plus the Nimule camp was getting all kinds of air play in Britain. Every media station in Britain and Ireland had made treks to the camp and several others, according to Ambassador Fauntroy.

I completed calls to British Ambassador Fauntroy and Canadian Morrison telling them I was back in Kampala. I asked that if they had time to come to Entebbe in a couple hours to see what I had brought for the camp.

I called Israeli Ambassador Dansky to tell him that I had brought gifts from his friends in America and that he could pick them up in a couple hours at our Entebbe hangar.

Three taxis carried us to the US Embassy. Vicky, Robin, Rachel, Bob, Phil and I were going to meet with Ambassador Bernardi and then fly to Entebbe in the chopper so the pilots could give the one we brought a good checkout. Bob and a couple of Andy’s men were driving one of the Suburbans assigned to Ambassador Bernardi to Entebbe and we were going to keep it for a few days.

A couple of my men were going to take the truck and trailer back to hangar 17 to load up all the crates we had brought that contained the wish list of supplies for my men and the embassy.

The group of men who went from the motel to the hangar included the pilots, load masters and helicopter technicians. Major Culpepper – along with Hanna and her camera man Sylvester Combs – went with them.

For them the first order of business was to unload the chopper so the mechanics could go to work putting it together and test it out.

At the embassy, after a quick meeting with Ambassador Bernardi and introductions, he informed me that he too wanted to fly to Entebbe to check things out.

The truck and trailer left as soon as we got to the embassy; the chopper, Suburban and one of the cars Andy had bought left 45 minutes later.

When we landed, Hanna was already filming; the truck was in the process of being loaded with the stuff for the embassy. It soon finished loading and the crates were strapped down. It left for the embassy; I guessed that we would see it back in a couple hours or a little longer.

The chopper mechanics had the rotors installed and were rechecking all the things from the shop check list. The two pilots walked over to help them finish the checklist so they could go play in the air.

I was giving Bernardi a tour of the plane and then the hangar when Ambassador Dansky arrived with the two cars that I suggested he bring. Both were full when I put the last box in.

The forklift began the task of sorting out the medicines for tomorrow’s trek to Nimule. The meds were going to be divided between both choppers and loaded today.

I was not going to leave part of it in the hangar like the food we had brought. I wanted the docs to have the meds and be responsible for it. I would feel bad if someone broke into the hangar and stole it.

The pilots were ready to go through the power and flight control test. To escape any flying debris and dust, everyone ducked into the hangar until the chopper went through the procedure and then a short flight test.

Vicky had brought several of the handheld aviation radios that the ground persons used to position and monitor aircraft transitioning Morton Field so we could maintain communications with the helicopters. The pilot radioed that the chopper’s test was satisfactory and they were going to fly it to Kampala and back for an extended test.

Kampala was too far for the hand held radios so the best we could do was monitor the general aviation frequency and wait.

“Ambassador Dansky that is the chopper that Ben-David and I have been discussing. It is going to be left here in this hangar, we may at some point use this hangar as a maintenance site for both choppers as needed,” I said.

“I was led to believe that you either have qualified persons to fly it or at times I may have to supply a crew and security for you,” I said.

“Mossad and I have had several discussions. They are going to send me several more men and two are to be qualified,” he replied.

“Ben-David speaks very highly of your people he has met and you. We are looking forward to a long and prosperous relationship between our two organizations,” he replied.

“Once they arrive, contact me and we will develop a policy on how to handle any defects or problems that show up. I want to make sure that it is always ready for either of our groups to use,” I replied.

Our conversation had finished when Ambassadors Morrison and Fauntroy arrived. The forklift had been unloading the food and putting most of it in the hangar. I had decided that we would carry one third tomorrow and in three weeks my men could carry another third and then in three more weeks, the rest.

I was hoping that along the way I could plan another resupply flight before the food was gone. I explained my plan to Morrison and Fauntroy and was glad to hear that they were working on supply mission in 14 weeks from Britain. That would work out perfectly, giving me an extra six to eight weeks to put one together.

We planned tomorrow’s trip to Nimule; the meds would be split between the choppers. Both choppers would be flown back to Kampala. The normal embassy one would be parked on its pad and the other outside the embassy by the new fence. The night security crew would assign someone to guard it.

The truck and trailer would be loaded and driven to the embassy today. The truck and both Suburbans would leave at 4 AM for Nimule and both choppers at 8. The two mechanics were going to act as co-pilots. They were both capable of piloting, even though they were not working in that capacity for JBG.

Some of the security day shift would be going with the truck and Suburbans. The VIPs would be split up between the choppers.

It was planned; well, I would see how well that worked out tomorrow.

By noon everything was loaded and the C5 and hangar secured. We had lunch at the hotel; Vicky and I with some guards were going back to the embassy. We both had dozens of business related emails and conference calls to do and the secure systems at the embassy were appealing.

We were just getting ready to leave for the hotel when Major Culpepper handed me his phone, “This is General Walton; I understand the C5 is in Africa?”

“Yes, that is correct,” I replied.

“I have an emergency contract flight for it and your crew, since you are in the area,” he said.

“Let me give the phone to the pilot and you can fill him with all the information,” I replied as I handed the phone to Adam.

The C5 agreement was up in a few weeks; I wondered if this was a test of just how flexible we would be to their needs if we were given a contract with the Air Force. I was positive that he knew what we were doing here and the plan to return home. Sending the C5 away would take away our ticket home.

The fuel trucks were called to add 25 thousand gallons of very high priced fuel to top off the C5 tanks and it was nearly ready to leave when Adam motioned me off to the side.

“First stop is Saudi Arabia to pick up freight and then to Turkey. After that the flight is to the Minot Air Force base in North Dakota and then to the repository in Texas.”

“I think we are going to be transporting NATO nuclear warheads out of Turkey because of the turmoil there,” Adam said.

“Are you comfortable with that?” I asked.

“Nothing we have not done before. You need to develop plan B to get home; between loadings, layovers and flight time, we won’t be done in time to get back here to pick you up on Sunday,” Adam replied.

“It would not make sense for the C5 to come back here anyhow – as much fuel as it uses – so I am already working on it. Be careful, Turkey is not a good place any more. I will see you men next week,” I replied.

I could tell that there was some concern with some of the members of my group, but I had plan B in the works and plan C as the last resort. To complicate things, Ching Lee, Andy and I needed to be in Minneapolis on Monday to give a deposition to the investigating committee.

With the hangars locked down, the truck and other vehicles left for Kampala. Vicky and I split the group up and flew to the embassy.

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Chapter 440

Sunday afternoon Ben-David brought over the items he wanted to send to Ambassador Dansky. All the boxes were labeled and sealed as diplomatic cargo, the same as Frank’s.

The C5 crew was there going through last minute items. The cargo master loaded Frank’s and Ben’s freight and secured it. There were 20 crates of supplies and requested frozen foods – packed in dry ice – for my men at Kampala.

The fuel trucks loaded the tanks to 80%. Tomorrow morning before the plane hit the taxi way they would be filled to the brim.

The flight was leaving at 4AM; with the flight time and time changes – with good luck – we would be on the ground at Entebbe at 11PM their time. I made one phone call and told Hanna that she needed to be at Morton at 3:30.

Hanna and her camera man were going; she had expressed interest when I returned from Kampala the first time. Her station was changing its format, trying to find a niche to separate itself from the competition.

When I made the decision to bring the group, I invited her on the condition that any video needed to be approved once we were in Uganda and she could not say anything until the plane was off the ground. Hanna and Walt got the shots the next day at our Docs.

I was hoping that with Hanna along it would make good public relations piece and help donations for the next humanitarian flight.

After some intimate family time, all of us turned in early and also Vicky and I planned on sleeping on the plane after takeoff.

At 3AM Vicky and I were dressed and had plenty of help to load all the bags into the Suburban. We loaded all the fancy dresses and our jewelry and shoes. I had Rachael’s and Robin’s dress and shoes; the girls had bought them. This time since I was just visiting, I took along a couple pairs of my camo as well as the pant suits. Because of the sleeping boys, we said our goodbyes with hugs and kisses at home.

At Morton I picked out an extra armored vest for our guest along with hardware for Bob and drove to the plane. The crew was already loading their things in the plane and helped us put our things in the plane. I carried my portable office to the front where the seating was set up. The fuel truck was topping off the tanks. I stopped at the restaurant to pick up the subs I had ordered for the flight and a couple of the thermal cartons of fresh coffee.

Hanna was filming the preparation for departure – including close ups of the plane and JBG decal on the side of the fuselage – and going through a dialog for her station to use if they wanted. I let her cameraman do a sweep of the full cargo bay.

I had things done a little differently this time; there were large labels on all the food and medicines pallets with the company names that had donated them. I was pushing hard for good PR and hoped that the companies would continue support.

There was a communication link to an internet satellite that she could use to send it and I could also use it for my portable office.

Bob, Phil, Robin and Rachel were there; as soon as we boarded we could leave. The last question I asked was “Do all of you have your passports?”

Major Culpepper was there with his bags; I guess he decided to go along on this last flight.

At 4 on the nose, the pilots went full throttle on the engines; our long trek had begun. The guest, Andy and my 10 body guards, Vicky and I settled in the seating area over the cargo bay and tried to nap.

Seven hours into the flight a chime went off and the phone was blinking, “Hello.”

“We are just off the coast of Africa, the tanker is meeting up with us in less than ten minutes. I did not know if you wanted your TV lady to film out the window for a few minutes or your guest to watch; also, you need to call home,” Adam said.

All the visitors wanted a look so down the cargo bay we went and then took the ladder to the cockpit. It took some finagling to get everyone in and the camera into position; the KC135 tanker and the C5 were maneuvering into position.

The boom was already moved from its stowed position, elevated high and extended to give Adam a mark to aim for. The planes played a cat and mouse game, carefully closing until things were in place. Less than a minute later the planes were joined by the boom and fuel was flowing.

After what seemed too quick, the KC boom controller came over the radio, “That’s the 20,000 gallons you wanted; we will be waiting for the return trip. What credit card number do you want to use for this?” he asked, laughing into the mike.

“Hanna, give me your gas card,” I asked to carry the joke further. The camera was still rolling.

“How much is it going to cost? I don’t think there is a high enough limit,” she replied.

“$80,000 for the half a tank of fuel,” I replied.

“Boss, you might need to increase the limit on my gas card,” Hanna was now looking into the camera. “Hanna Page signing off close to African coast,” she said.

We went back to our seats, and I made a satellite call to the office and hooked my portable office to the internet through the communication system.

I had a list to call: Marcy, Lorrie, Eric, Kent Dalton and Victor. I started with Marcy; she had started working on the items from our meeting Friday. I listened while she related the conversations among Jenna, Robert Alderman and herself.

To add more problems into the puzzle, Jenna wanted to make another investment in the company as she had done before. The oil dome she owned in Nebraska was producing a bumper crop of natural gas as well as oil. With Marcy as her only child, she and Robert were concocting ways to get her wealth to Marcy without massive estate taxes some time in the future.

One of those ways was for the stock to be joint ownership, another was the estate exception and there were many more that were above my head.

That required an explanation of what we had done last time to Robert. This time he suggested changes that would work even better and a change in our how we generated stock.

“Marcy, it sounds like you and Lorrie have it covered; you are there – I am here. Do what you think is best,” I said.

“Call Lorrie; she is excited! The jet she was looking at is still available; she wants to talk to you,” Marcy replied before she hung up.

Just then an email with two huge files arrived from Lorrie; one was a jpg file and the other was a video file. Vicky and I were sitting side by side so we could both watch my computer.

The pictures and video were from the aircraft broker; a complete set inside and outside. It looked very nice. I called to the cockpit to see if Adam could come to the passenger area. He had pilot in command time in this type of aircraft. There was a big sign in the cockpit ‘no computers allowed.’

Adam looked at the pictures and video with us. When they finished, I asked, “Is this a good plane or a problem plane?”

“A very good plane, reliable, tough, good range and performs better than the spec sheet,” he replied.

I hit the reply tab, “I only see one thing wrong; it does not have our decals on it, YET. I assume you and Marcy have negotiated a good price for it. Take Robbie to check it out and the necessary pilots and if it looks as good as the pictures, fly it back.”

I finished the calls to Eric and Ken Dalton, the investigation was under way at MU. Thirty four people had died. Their explosive experts estimated that the two SUV’s had two thousand pounds of ANFO each; more than enough to bring down the field house.

I called Victor last.

“When are you going to be back?” Victor asked.

“Hopefully Sunday; why?” I replied.

“We have moved the wedding date up. We have decided on a small wedding with close friends in two weeks. We are going to have a small one at the church in town. Joni and Allie both wanted to make sure you could be here,” Victor replied then he added “Allie wants to tell you something; here she is.”

“Ms. BJ, I am going to have a little brother or sister! Mommy is going to have a baby. I’m so happy and so are Mommy and Daddy.”

“She has been busting at the seams to tell you. I’m sure she will tell you all the details when she sees you,” Victor said.

“Congratulations, and pass that on to Joni for me, I’m happy for the both of you. I know both of you wanted children. All of us will be at the wedding. You can count on it,” I said.

We were an hour out of Entebbe when Adam called to alert me to our position. I called the embassy at Kampala to send both Suburbans to carry us and our bags from our hangar in the general aviation area to the Kampala Hilltop Hilton Hotel where we were staying.

It was time to give the girls a safety speech and I had them all move to one area of the seats; all the ladies that went through the embassy training received the portions of the speech at various part of the training.

“We are not landing in a generally friendly country; there are areas that you will be reasonably safe. There are areas that will not be safe at all if you are by yourself. That said, do not go anywhere by yourself. Do not even go from your motel room to the ice maker by yourself.”

“I asked you to bring light long-sleeve tops and long pants and jeans. Uganda has hundreds of diverse cultures and beliefs. Women baring skin in certain areas can get you all kinds of problems. Stay with your group, don’t wander off or allow someone to shepherd you away the group.”

“Do not fall for the trap of someone knocking on the door telling you they have an emergency or you need to come with them. Do not open the door unless it is one of us; we will clearly identify ourselves,” I said.

When we taxied to our hangar, the Suburbans, the two cars Andy had bought months ago and two of the limousines were waiting. Four of Andy’s men were going to stay with the plane tonight. 18 of us made the trip to the Hilltop Hilton. It was midnight Uganda time.

I had reserved 12 double occupancy rooms on the same end of the same floor for safety and security reasons. Andy insisted that his men were to have the rooms at each end of the group. I signed for the rooms and passed out the room keys.

“Because of the jet lag and the time zone changes, sleep is going to be hard for a couple nights; go to bed and try to sleep. Breakfast is 6:30, be ready. We have a full schedule every day.”

Robin was rooming with me and Rachel with Vicky. I left it to the men to sort out who their roommates were.

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Chapter 439

After a long night of explanations and comforting and more explanations, along with a big breakfast, I went to my office to start my day.

When I opened my email I wished I had gone to the gym instead. There were hundreds of new ones since I had looked on the flight back.

I began with those marked important and spent a couple hours finishing them up before I needed a break.

Ching Lee sent me all the pictures she had taken while I was disarming the vest, including several close ups. I looked them over and saw nothing unusual, then sent them to Ben-David.

The gym was quiet for the first time in months. All the training was done with all the embassies staffed to the contract levels. The regular gym customers were making the best of it.

The only training scheduled would be the new staff for KCC. Jason was meeting with the current employees next week. Hopefully all the current employees would stay on; I had worked with them for several years and they worked together well as a group.

I drove to Morton Field to see Lorrie. I spent time going over the flight issues that appeared last night. Not that it surprised me, but Lorrie had been looking for a while. She called it part of her long range planning.

Lorrie handed me a folder of aircraft she had researched over the last couple of months that were immediately available for purchase. Her first choice was on top followed by the second. Then she had the data to prove her needs and possible revenue streams to make it work.

I asked if she has asked Robby’s opinion. “This one,” she said as she handed me the spec sheet from the top of the folder. Along with the spec sheet was a distance chart from Morton Field. It would do everything I thought we would ever need; but then I thought that when we bought the Bombardiers and again with the C130s.

I asked about the money and was surprised that it was no more than the price of a new G550. It was three years old and still showed 0 hours on the logs. I wondered how anyone could spend that kind of money and just park it on the tarmac. Everything deteriorated just setting and also lost value.

I understood why and how the Saudi broker did it when we bought one of the G5s; they had hundreds of billions of petro dollars to play games with and no taxes.

This plane was in California; the land of crazy taxes, laws and fruitcakes. Maybe the fruitcake part explained it all; a fruitcake with money.

Marcy had looked at expanding by adding several sites in California, but quickly decided against it last year. She found out the taxes were 10 times higher than any other state and that California had the highest rate of missing rental cars in the nation.

They were driven across the border never to return. Mexico was off limits to repo men or recovery teams.

I took the spec sheet, plane info and broker info with me. I would meet with Marcy this afternoon so she could get the ball rolling.

I talked with Lorrie and the airport restaurant manager about tomorrow afternoon’s party. We were going to use the big agency meeting room for it. All four of the Iowa National Guard C130s that had been in Africa were coming back tonight and early tomorrow morning. The two that were doing the freight run would do their last run tonight.

General McVee was flying in with the twelve other crews that had done flying for us. All eighteen Iowa air transport crews had flown to, from or around Africa in the last 10 weeks. They had flown enough hours on our nickel to meet their time requirements for another year.

The four C130s we owned had been inspected and recertified for another year while the Guard was flying freight runs for us. They had given our pilots a break that we used to get the pilots recertified.

Tonight the C5 would be back from Thailand; it was another secret flight for the agency. Tomorrow and Sunday it would be inspected and loaded for the flight to Kampala. I was initially worried that much of the flight would be a waste.

Now that was not the case, we had 100,000 pounds of canned food, 10 crates of medial equipment and thousands of doses of medicines for the good doctors. Plus we loaded the chopper I was going to leave in the hangar at Entebbe.

Phil, Robin, Rachael, Bob, Gordon, and 10 of the RRT (including Andy) were going, along with Vicky and me. The 10 had been instrumental in building the tables and things for the Nimule camp. They wanted to be a part of the humanitarian mission again. Andy insisted that we take security personnel so that worked out.

We were taking two mechanics who were going to reassemble the chopper blades and test it, plus inspect the one assigned to the Kampala embassy. Then they were taking commercial flights to do annual inspections on our other 407 helicopters that were close by; they were due – as were others – soon.

When I went to her office Marcy was meeting with Robert Alderman the ex IRS special agent who we hired to help us with taxes. There was no better time to get into deep financial planning. There were a little over two months left in the year. He monitored the revenue streams and gave advice on how to offset taxes, reduce taxes and how to flat out spend money to avoid taxes.

Robert was not happy; unless we did a lot of things in the next two months, we were going to have one whopping tax bill.

The revenue from the first full weeks with all the embassy staff in place just went past his desk and blew the lid off his earlier projections. That, along with the freight contracts and all the extra revenue from the C5 flights, was just too much all at once. That was just for two months; these contracts were for years.

I thought we had done plenty with the purchase of the last C130, the 45 Black Hawks, the purchase of the gun club and buying out all the houses of the whining-crying development across from it. But I was wrong. The gap between revenue and deductibles was too great. The meeting lasted an hour and then we had out regular meeting.

It was a lively meeting with tax man Robert explaining things again and giving us options to think about. There were decisions to be made in the next few days.

We did make one decision, we were going on vacation to one of the Florida houses the week after Vicky and I came back from Kampala.

We did our normal Saturday routine; wash clothes, clean the house. We finished in time to have plenty of family time and time with the boys. I could see I was really going to miss them when Vicky and I were going to be gone for weeks at a time visiting all the embassies.

It was 5 PM when Frank and his wife showed up with a pickup load of things for us to deliver to Ambassador Dansky. I went with Frank to Morton where we unloaded the things in the hangar and labeled them to go on the C5, while his wife stayed with my girls and the boys. The C5 was closed up for the night, most likely for the weekend.

I figured that Frank wanted to talk and he did.

“There are going to be new agency supervisors and teams at all four of the colleges. When we began the investigation into Randolph I thought we had an isolated problem. That is not the case and that is why NSA was at Minneapolis. I have much bigger problems than that at several agency sites.

“The administrations diversity program has bitten us in the ass; they simply sent me people. I was not allowed to check them out and was told to use them. It is a good thing that I could send them where they could do the least amount of damage.”

“After you gave us the break, NSA was able to follow the leads to the complete gang of spies; again I have to thank you,” Frank said.

“Has the Air Force decided what is going to happen with the C5 when the time is up?” Frank asked.

“No, but Major Culpepper has not been on any of the last flights. He has been deer hunting the scrub brush or to the gun club nearly every day,” I replied.

“I hear that there is an active discussion going on about some kind of contract with you. Apparently that door was opened in the initial discussion with you. I am supporting that potential contract every chance I get; our arrangement is working so well I don’t want any changes,” Frank replied.

Back at the house, supper tonight was one of our low key favorites – homemade subs and soup. Jenny had cut into cubes some of the deer meat that Jason had give us and was making homemade vegetable and deer meat soup.

It has been simmering all afternoon to give it flavor and making everyone hungry. There had been plenty of sampling as well. Jenny had made a 5 gallon pot so there would be leftovers for tomorrow night’s supper. Homemade soup was always better the second day it was heated.

Frank and Madeline joined us for an early supper and stayed for a couple of hours.

Frank and I had several private talks about many things. The future working with the agency looked promising, both in flights and other clandestine endeavors. The agency had been following our embassy assignments with interest. I was sure that was nothing new.

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Chapter 438

As more and more state police and federal agents showed along with the command center, I started sending members of RRT to pack and take their things to the Bombardier.

I wanted to be airborne as soon as possible. Ching Lee was on her way to pack our things in the motel room and I was on my way to one more damn meeting.

I asked Andy to verify that we had left no weapons on the roof – or anywhere else – and to make sure that we had all our Magpul rotary drums.

This meeting was a small one, State Police Commandment Kent Dalton, Frank, Eric, the wimpy triplets, Ching Lee and me. I knew what they wanted even before I walked in the door.

Kent Dalton started speaking, “Ms. Jones, the investigators are going to need all the film from the cameras and access to your people.”

I was just about to respond when my cell phone rang; I recognized the number as being Ben-David.

“Shalom my friend,” and then I switch the conversation over to Arabic.

“I see you are in the news. Are you and your people safe? No injuries?” Ben asked.

“Just a couple of my people received minor injuries. We were very lucky,” I replied.

“Get me pictures of the devices and hopefully we can identify who the explosives trainer was for the group that you were dealing with,” Ben said.

While I was disarming them, Ching Lee was taking pictures with her phone so there were good pictures to send him.

“Yes, I should have good pictures to send to you,” I replied.

“The flight is still on for Monday. Yes, I still have plenty of room on the plane for anything you need me to carry. As long as it carries the diplomatic seal or I know what to do with it when we get there. There are seats if you want to see your friend. We will be there close to a week,” I said and finished with, “Shalom.”

My next words were in Russian directed at Frank, “Before I forget, I’m going to see our mutual friend in Africa next week. If there is anything you want me to hand deliver, get it to me by Sunday evening.”

“I have several things you can carry for me including some contraband that I will have to get you paper for,” Frank replied in Russian.

After the calls I was able to respond the request for video, “The video will be made available to you with conditions attached.”

(1) The video shall remain the exclusive copyrighted property of JGB; there are to be no copies made.
(2) No portion of the videos or stills shall be released to the public, and I emphasize the word NO.
(3) You and any agency – state, local or federal – that deems viewing necessary shall sign a binding letter of agreement to those terms.

“I am having the video collected from cameras 1 through 10, the West entrance cameras 34 through 40, the East entrance and cameras 58 through 68 on the rear parking lot.”

“I have instructed my EIT team to start the collections on the entrance cameras at 10 minutes before the 1st detonation and continue until bodies were removed.”

“On the parking lot cams they were told to start when the SUVs came through the gate and to continue until the fires were under control,” I said.

“It being recorded on DVDs, there will be a lot of them. You can send an officer to my offices on Kent Island to maintain the chain of custody and to sign the agreement tomorrow,” I said.

“Why can’t we just download it from the servers here?” Commandant Dalton asked.

“It has already been backed up to our server farm on the Island and everything on the servers here scrubbed. It eliminates hackers and friends of friends getting any downloads, short clips or posting on YouTube, gory video or any other sites,” I replied.

“As far as access to my people, you are to conduct no interviews without our company legal team present. That includes the employees currently assigned here so you need to make appointments well in advance.”

“The Rapid Response Team that was here will be another issue all together; when they leave here today they are scheduled to depart to various places in Africa and the Middle East. We will have to work out those issues as they arise,” I replied.

“The video should answer all the questions anyhow, so I think the interviews will be a moot point,” I said.

I received a text from Andy, “Everything is loaded and ready. We are at the plane waiting.”

“Gentlemen, tonight is steak and seafood night at the Island restaurant and I don’t like cold steak, so I don’t intend to be late. Have a good evening,” I said as stood to leave.

“I don’t need to be here. Len can handle it from here. Do you have an empty seat on that that plane?” Eric asked.

“Should have, if not, we will make one,” I replied then asked, “Does anyone else want go back?”

Frank and the triplets decided to stay to work with the investigators. I really thought Frank and the triplets were there to shake up the agency personnel after the Randolph fiasco.

There were no local offices for their agencies. The FBI and CIA were sharing the building with the DHS.

The plane was full but we all had seats. The pilots had expressed concern about the extra weight with all the freight we were bringing back.

Minneapolis was close to its maximum range with the minimum fuel reserve requirements and that was not the only problem. This return trip made it apparent.

If we had to go further, we would have split up the team and use two of the G5s – possibly three – as Lorrie was doing with some of her flights now. To use the C130 was over two hundred miles an hour slower than the G5 and out of the question, unless there was heavy freight involved.

With all the new manufacturing coming to the area, Lorrie was now juggling large flights using two or more planes. Many of the defense industries that were located in the south-west were shuttling large groups of engineers, technicians and PR people between the eastern sites and western main offices.

Lorrie needed a bigger plane to carry more passengers further without landing to refuel. After listening to the pilots concerns with loading today, I was ready to agree with her. I needed to be able to send the complete RRT and their equipment and supplies in one plane.

We landed at Morton at 7:30 and the girls were waiting. The six of us with the two boys went straight to the restaurant. Jenny had requested the small meeting room. Jason, Lisa, Jake, Mindy with Mom and Dad filled the room just right.

Vicky had her laptop with her and when I saw it, I knew Robert had given her a condensed DVD of the action from today as I had asked him to do. It was easy to make while he was working on the ones for the State Police. I knew why we were in this room. It was one of the rooms that were used for corporate meetings and laptops could be linked to the flat-screen TV.

The group was anxious to see what had happened today and I had given Vicky instructions that they were not to look at the DVD until I was with them.

The drinks had been served and the orders taken when Vicky connected up the laptop to the big screen and started playing the video, starting with the west entrance.

“Are you sure you want to look at this before supper?” I asked.

“We know it is going to be gory no matter when we look at it. Go ahead, let’s look at it and get it over with. The suspense has gotten the best of us,” Jenny said.

“I will explain what we are looking at as best as I can. I have not seen this either,” I replied.

The owners of the restaurant were working tonight as usual and not long after our orders were taken, they stopped in. The cover was that they had a lot of new people working and just wanted to make sure the service was up to our standards, also to talk to Jason.

Vicky was still trying to get the video stay playing and having trouble getting it linked. Their son helped get the computer linked up.

I explained the sequence on the video. I was surprised how quickly it played out. The two women waited at the entrance road after Diya let them out and then started the slow walk towards that entrance. They were within 25 yards from the security checkpoint when they were challenged.

The two were told to raise their hands repeatedly as a couple of my men slowly made their way towards them. They were telling other visitors to get back and stay away.

The two finally decided to run towards my two men. They had only made a couple of steps when one of them stumbled and activated the device, causing the other to explode as well. My men had run as well and gotten far enough away to be only slightly injured.

It was disturbing to watch the two women disappear in the explosion, with body parts going everywhere.

The next was the east entrance where Ching Lee and I killed the other two. Ching Lee gave the blow by blow of what we had planned, how we pulled it off and why we did it that way. The long lines, how we had taken advantage of them and how they ended up in the middle of the line so quickly forced us to do it that way to try to save lives.

The explanation helped sooth Jenny’s wrath that I saw in her eyes, but I knew more was coming as soon as she got me alone.

The final video was the two SUVs and the cameras mounted on the roof were close enough to my men on the roof that the audio recorded them firing on the SUVs.

I knew the explosion was big; Ching Lee and I had actually felt the concussion from the blast and we were almost 300 yards from it. To see it on film was almost beyond belief.

The two were separated by two rows of double parked cars; that gave them a straight run from the back of the lot to each corner of the field house.

Both SUVs detonated within seconds of one another. The explosions were so large that it lifted dozens of parked cars into the air and piled them on top of other cars.

We watched people that had been walking among the cars disappear in the fire of the explosions and saw others in their cars engulfed in flames and incinerated.

The meal turned into a somber affair as I fully expected it to do.

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