You guys lucked out, big time. Again - totally grateful for it, and one reason why drills and exercises should be as real as possible. You don't always get someone going loco, but you will get people - even damned good people - clutching when the shit hits the fan. You need to know that can happen and kick asses accordingly.
I guess he showed no signs prior to this then? If he had, you'd have said, you report accurately (it's a nasty habit!). Not going to ask for details - one doesn't, but I am only semi retired. Anything that covers my guy's asses is helpful at the moment.
The only signs before then was curiosity. He had an Arab wife, I think from Palestine. He used to talk to her in front of us and he would describe to her, the music, and all of what he had heard that week in Arabic. He seemed a fairly devout Muslim, and we were as I said 'curious' what he was doing with us. So, yes, to answer you directly we were kind of watching him. But it was nothing direct or overt. It was just a general feeling that something was not quite right with this chap. He just seemed not to be a full part of the squad. A loner, so to speak.
He had spoken to his wife just before we set out on that particular exercise. I think another part of it was possible influence from listening to and also missing his wife. I do not know what was going on between them.
Initially it was probably something he wanted, and thought he could do, but once he was in it, the pressure and the mission got to him. Before he joined us he was a military mortician. He had seen combat, but from a different point of view.
Yes. We were lucky and grateful to the Sergeants and trainers. The stress and pressure of the training worked. It did exactly what it was supposed to do. It got rid of the weaker links. And we are all the better for it.
Cheers EC. I thank you for your concern and sympathies.