SOFREP had a chance to sit down for an interview with former USMC Operator Michael Golembesky to discuss his new book, Level Zero Heroes. Read on and enjoy the conversation.
1. Hey Michael, good to see this project finally coming to fruition. Can you tell us about the main inspiration behind the book?
To share this story with the American people and the world. I have said it before, but it really just comes down to the promise I made to the guys on my Marine Special Operations Team. And that was if we make it through this deployment and we truly operate and demonstrate what makes this new entity, called MARSOC, great, I will write a story about it. And in the end, that is exactly what those guys did and more.
Someone was going to be the first one to write the first team-level story about MARSOC, so why not us? Our team just happened to have an amazing story to tell. Yes, it is still only one story among a sea of other great stories from the war in Afghanistan that will never see the light on day. But this is one story that will be told because I kept that promise. Level Zero Heroes—IS—the first page in MARSOC history, but it is only the beginning.
2. Imagine you could go back in time to the day you signed up at the recruiter’s office. Would your decisions and military job choices be different?
You know, that’s a tricky one. I am extremely grateful for how my 8 years in the Marine Corps went. I experienced a lot, met many great people and really have to say it was pure luck that I eventually made my way into MARSOC, then 2nd Battalion, Company G and finally ended up being assigned to Team 2. Looking back, if just one of those opportunities had not presented itself or if I had made another choice, all of this may not have happened and you wouldn’t be reading the book Level Zero Heroes. So the short answer is, no.
3. If there’s one take away you want the reader to walk away with after reading your book, what would it be?
Hope. I want people to look at not only what the men of MSOT 8222 did and achieved, but what the rest of the veterans who served in the Bala Murghab River Valley accomplished. It was truly a team effort; our brothers with the 82nd Airborne, the Italian infantry and our Afghan counterparts like the Commandos.
I want people to look at what they did and to know there is still hope. Still hope for the country of Afghanistan, for humanity and for the United States, which in its current state seems to have lost faith in her greatest. America is, and has always been, the greatest nation to ever grace the human race. We are still the beacon of hope in a darkening world.
4. If you could be President for a day, what would you do about the current situation in Afghanistan?
Interesting question, and by no means am I any type of national leader but…
I would immediately have Afghan President Hamid Karzai—or wait until after the election and get the new jackass in office—on a private military jet and brought directly to the Oval Office, shut the door and have a face-to-face, man-to-man talk about what is “going to be done.”
In a country like Afghanistan, you can’t just wait for them to take charge and develop a strategy to protect our interests in the region, like the current administration is doing. I would look him right in the eyes, with all of the majesty of the Oval Office behind me and recap the sacrifice of life, money and equipment that we have provided up to this point in an effort to stabilize their country.
I would also remind him that we invaded, crushed and occupied their country after what was done to us on September 11th. Then I would slide him the “status of forces agreement’ across the desk and tell him to sign it—this is not an option, this is what happens when your country is conquered—the U.S. will maintain a fully operational air base within Afghanistan, Special Operations will be freely conducted throughout the country as we see fit, and our service members will never be subject to Afghan law or prosecution.
And what if he refuses?
Well, all of those things I just described are still going to happen, like I said, that is not an option. But if you don’t want to sign the SOFA, I am pulling every American penny, piece of equipment and resource to your government. You will slide back into chaos and darkness, and most likely everyone in your political party and government will eventually be killed by the Taliban.
Stare him in the eyes again, clip the pen and sign it.
–By order of President Michael Golembesky, former team member with Marine Corps Special Operations.
5. What are you up to these days? Any more documentaries in the future, anything you want to share with the readers of SOFREP?
All of my spare time these days has been devoted to promoting the September 2nd release of Level Zero Heroes. After that, how knows? Hopefully someone options the movie rights so I will have something to do with myself.
But I will add, as a little side project I’ve been working on organizing a Level Zero Heroes themed airsoft/MILSIM project called 5th MSORB—Marine Special Operation Reenact Battalion. Through all of the work I have done with the Level Zero Heroes book, I have had huge support from this community of loyal enthusiasts.
But to be honest, I had no fucking idea what airsoft/MILSIM was. All I knew is that most military guys just gave them shit as posers or fakes. Sorry, but I haven’t seen this. All of the interactions that I’ve had with the community have been nothing but professional, polite and very grateful and courteous to me. So in return for all of the support they have shown me, I have created this project for them as a way to say thank you.
Anyone interested in purchasing Michael’s new book can order here.