Dedication for this write goes to sister Kitt Yana Settle

Moses “Mos” Bently was one hell of a great operator: strong, eagle-eyed, motivated, smart — deadly. He came to the Unit from Charlie Company of the 7th Special Forces Group in Panama; a Commander’s In-Extremis Force (CIF). I was glad as hell he was not just on our side, but in my own Squadron.

I’m immediately put in mind of a secret about Mos that I have retained all of these years, not so much in keeping with the loyalty of brotherhood and to protect his reputation; rather, I just never felt a compulsion to spill out a moment of humanity that Moses experienced between just he and I.

It was in the grand expanse of the Jordanian desert — yes it was. The hour was somewhere past the mid of night, and once after midnight, most Delta men really didn’t give a phuq what time it was anymore, it was going to be another all-nighter.

Mos and I raced throttle wide-open across the desert on dirt bikes. We had run a long reconnaissance from our main convoy of combat vehicles and personnel. It had taken far longer than we anticipated; most of these operations did. Even padding the back end of the plan with extra time didn’t quite do it.

Skimming across the desert wearing Night Observation Devices (NOD) in the jet black of night, we took a particular interest in the sound of the rocks and stones we crunched over. They made a ringing sound like metal rods clinking together, and under the NODs, they gave off a faint blue spark as the bike’s tires crushed them.

I surrendered hours ago to the reality that if either one of us were to dump our bike in this crust, we would be guaranteed a certain death or at least a sound mauling. Far be it for us to slow down and pick our way through it like sensible men who wished to live.

And we raced on.