It can’t be said that the cartel relies on half-measures to accomplish their goals. Seven large trucks, filled to the brim with armed soldiers, didn’t so much as enter the military base as crash directly through the perimeter fence, guns shooting at any and every military target in sight. True to our support’s word, the sounds of Unidad’s frantic radio traffic sprang to life in our earpieces. I reclined against the rocky outcropping serving as our overlook and tried to take a nap – as I’ve said before, Spanish is not my strong suit.
Is it cold-blooded to rest while nearly a hundred people not a few dozen yards away were engaged in a bloodthirsty firefight? Probably. Worse that it was a conflict we helped spur? Definitely. Did that give me any pause? Not at all. Like I’ve said before, being an operator means getting very dirty, and trying to leave personal politics back at HQ. Our orders were to help the homegrown Bolivian resistance take down the cartel which had usurped their government, and picking a fight between the drug lords and the military seemed to be a very effective means to that end. I may not have had any love for the rebels, but I didn’t hold any love for the other factions either. A job was a job, and this little squabble a means to an end.
Lost in my own thoughts, a frantic elbow jabbing in my ribs brought me back to the situation at hand. Gaz pointed to her earpiece and said “Miguel de los Monteros.” My expression must have been blank because she rolled her eyes and explained, “The son of Bolivia’s defense minister – he is ‘El Camadante.'”
This was big news; if Miguel was indeed the one who had ordered the capture and ceaseless torture of the cartel lieutenant, pumping him for information to use against the cartel in case their cozy relationship went sour, things could get very bad, very quickly. Instead of running the country from their hidden estates and behind public figures, the cartel would take this betrayal as cause and opportunity to take a more active, and public, role in civil governance. The last thing we needed was for them to amass even greater authority in the region.
Gaz radioed our superiors with this new turn of events as I prepped our gear for a quick infiltration – I already knew the higher-ups would want us to confirm his identity before the cartel could whisk him away into a torture-filled hole somewhere in the jungle. Double-checking our equipment, including body armour, I looked at my partner, who gave me the nod.
Time to stretch our legs again.