While the mission has become somewhat fuzzier and more ambiguous over the years, our initial goal in sending military to Afghanistan was to quickly and definitively rain hell down on the Taliban in the wake of the 9/11/01 terrorist attacks. That story, of when everything was righteous and pure, is being told in this week’s new release 12 Strong, based on the book “Horse Soldiers” by Doug Stanton, which tells the non-fiction version of these events.
Chris Hemsworth, Trevante Rhodes, Michael Shannon, Michael Pena and others all star as members of an elite squad who went overseas as the pointy end of the knife, a small force that could be flexible and lethal, acting as America’s strong right hand. Once in-country they find the situation is even more unexpected than planned. Operating without support or infrastructure, the group finds themselves needing to work with a tribal warlord whose allegiance is questionable and facing opposition sporting significantly more firepower than the horses and rifles they’re using.