Dagger 22 follows the author, SSgt Michael “Ski” Golembesky, and his team of Marine Raiders (MSOT 8222) on their 2009-2010 deployment to Bala Murghab, Afghanistan.
In Golembesky’s first book, Level Zero Heroes, he highlights how MSOT 8222 made the best of a deployment where the rules of engagement forced them to regularly be on the defense during each operation. In Dagger 22, the author tells the story of how the team made their own luck by going on the offensive for a change, while in search of a “good fight.” The book begins with a narrative about the mental struggles that followed Golembesky home after the deployment, and then quickly launches into the mission of his team – call sign Dagger 22. Their new mission – to force the enemy to come out and fight.
On one hand, the book demonstrates uncommon courage and initiative by those Raiders, yet on the other hand, for Raiders it really isn’t anything out of the ordinary. It is what they do. They find unconventional ways to take the fight to the enemy, and they strike fear in the hearts and minds of the enemy. Forget winning their hearts and minds – Raiders want to crush the enemy – and crush them they did. At one point, enemy communications were intercepted where the Taliban warned each other to avoid shooting at the “Commandos with the blue (Raider) patches” unless they had no other option. As Golembesky explains, “We didn’t want our enemies to fear or respect us, we wanted them dead.”
With the relatively young history of Marine Special Operations (MARSOC) since it was revived in 2006 after decades of the Marine Corps refusing to have an “elite within an elite,” there are not many books that exist to detail their operations. Golembesky certainly fills much of that void with a thrilling follow-up to his best-selling “Level Zero Heroes.” He selflessly highlights the valor demonstrated by men such as GySgt Robert L. Gilbert and SSgt Patrick R. Dolphin, who made the ultimate sacrifice for their country, Marine Corps, and brothers in arms. For anyone wanting to learn more about the great things that Marine Raiders have been – and are – doing in the War on Terror, Dagger 22 is a must read.
Dagger 22 will be released on September 20 and can be found on Amazon.com
An exclusive SOFREP Q&A with author Michael Golembesky can be found here