AKA, the fourth fight in Operation Nachshon
It is 1430 on 7 April 1948, and the remains of the Company are preparing for the inevitable Arab Liberation Army counterattack. Operation Nachson has been a real bastard so far, really racking up the casualties: it began yesterday with an attack by 1st Platoon on an Arab machine gun position that was holding up the advance of the Etzioni Brigade's attack on the Arab village of Al-Qastal. Things got tough when it turned out the Palestinians had a second machine gun covering their flank, which caught 1st Platoon in a crossfire. Despite this, Avi Peled's combat leadership carried the day, though the 1st Platoon leader, Baruch Eitan, was wounded bad enough that he would spend the rest of the war recovering. Early this morning, Avi led a second attack, this time on an old Roman Fort; the attack got off to a rough start when three Jewish soldiers, including 2nd Platoon's leader, Danny Tzur, stepped on landmines. Avi pushed the remainder of the platoon forward, but then he was wounded, with Eli Yadin and Hiram Laskov stepping up to take the objective. And then a few hours ago Haganah High Command tasked the Company to assault into Al-Qastal and take the Arab Liberation Army's headquarters. Dor Peleg, the 3rd Platoon commander, led his troops into the assault, but his plan was probably contained a bit too much tactical finesse. The left-hand assault element, including Dor himself, was torn apart by enemy machine guns, as was the platoon's base of fire; the attack succeeded purely on the personal bravery of Boaz Efrat.
Once Boaz secured the enemy headquarters building, the remainder of the company, now only twelve men, consolidated in preparation for an enemy counterattack. With Avi wounded, his friend and former comrade in the Jewish Brigade, Eliyahu Rabat, has assumed command, promoting himself to Lieutenant. He then put it to the platoon to elect two Sergeants and, in the face of their demonstrated valor, the picks were unanimous: the youngsters, Eli Yadin and Boaz Efrat. Out of respect for his former Jewish Brigade comrade, the machine gunner, Alon Shahak, was recognized as a Corporal.
In any case, the Company reorganized and prepared its defenses, and it wasn't long before lookouts reported Arab troops approaching from the east and northeast.
Lt Eliyahu Rabat, age 31, former Sergeant of the Jewish Brigade, Sten
Elijah Davidoff, age 49, a refugee from Czechoslovakia, MP-40
Asaf Horowitz, age 19, a village youngster, Mauser
Dagan Narkiss, age 17, a village youngster, Mauser
Sgt Eli Yadin, age 18, a village youngster, Sten
Daniel Eisentkot, age 51, refugee from Bulgaria, Sten
Sgt Boaz Efrat, age 20, a village youngster, MP-40
Cpl Alon Shahak, age 35, former Jewish Brigade Corporal and Palmach member returned home, MG-34
Aaron Chaplin, age 44, a refugee from Belgium, Sten
Avigdor Galil, age 18, village youngster, Mauser (shot in bicep during Battle of Mar Gush)
Aram Mofaz, age 18, a village youngster, MP-40
Guy Rabin, age 40, village metalsmith, Springfield 03
This is actually the exact spot where Dor, Abel, and Aaron were shot up by enemy Bren guns...
Which is the next fight, of course. This fight went swimmingly, with Eli Yadin indeed proving quite the firecracker. I was sure he was dead meat after he whacked the first two guys in close combat and then moved into the street, where the Bren in the northeast had him dead to rights but missed! The Arabs suffered mightily: nine men killed and another four captured, while the Jews were quite fortunate in that no one was hurt. That would not be the case in their counterattack...