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Calendar >  No Compromises – Thomas Calabrese

No Compromises – Thomas Calabrese

By   /  January 26, 2020  /  21 Comments


Extreme Oversight

Thomas Calabrese — The tour group consisted of forty students, five sets of parents and three teachers from the Mira Costa Junior College in Oceanside, California.  They were touring religious and historical sites in Israel on an educational trip for their Middle Eastern History class when they were kidnapped as they left the Garden Tomb. Hamas claimed responsibility for the abduction and wasted little time in communicating their demands; money, release of political prisoners and retreat from various occupied territories. Major Robert Wolf developed a rescue plan from his years of experience in counter terrorism in cooperation with American and Israeli intelligence officials.  It was then approved by the Secretary of Defense, the National Security Adviser then kicked upstairs for the President to sign off. Major Wolf would command the forty man strike force and a group of hostage negotiators was able to buy the team extra time to prepare by bargaining over every detail with Hamas leadership. A specially equipped drone tracked the cell phone signal to a three block area in a warehouse district. A surveillance satellite took dozens of detailed photos including infra-red to determine heat signatures inside the buildings and transmitted them to the command center where Wolf determined exactly which structure the hostages were being held in. The team practiced their insertion protocol based on this Intel until every man knew his assignment. This was like a finely choreographed dance and everybody had to be in step.

Captain Mike Hodgins led twenty members of the team and neutralized the outside guards. Wolf and his team fast roped out of their stealth helicopter to the roof of the structure and Sergeant Landon led the way down the stairs. Because there were so many hostages, it was determined that Wolf and his men would carry compressed air rifles with potent tranquilizer darts to avoid any collateral damage. Once inside they eliminated the first interior guard and Wolf signaled his men to activate their signal blocking earplugs. A man walked forward carrying a handheld sound cannon that emitted a frequency that caused nausea and dizziness. Everybody including the hostages began moaning and the team moved in, disarmed the terrorists and took control of the situation

            “Hostages are secure,” Wolf radioed in.

The team was being congratulated on the tarmac of the airfield for the successful rescue when a Marine walked up, “The General wants to see you, Major.”

When Wolf entered, General Murphy immediately said, “One of the hostages just died.”

            “None of them were wounded, I had the corpsmen check them out before we were airlifted out.”

            “We’ll do an after mission investigation to determine cause of death and I’ll keep you posted,” General Murphy.

It was later determined that one of the parents who was on blood thinning medication was affected by the sound cannon. It caused a brain bleed in his cerebral cortex that could not be controlled.  The man had significant political contacts and his family demanded that someone be held accountable for his death.

 Major Robert Wolf was the most logical candidate to take the fall since he was in charge and that point was emphasized when a senator and congressman that were recipients of the man’s financial contributions demanded disciplinary action. Military leadership wasn’t about to antagonize a politician on the appropriations committee so they quietly caved under the political pressure. They gave a vote of no confidence to the seasoned operative, which meant that Wolf would never command a combat unit again. Rather than ride a desk for the rest of his career, Wolf left the Corps.

With his military experience and contacts, Wolf was able to obtain employment with Heckler&Koch, a German defense company that manufactures handguns, rifles, submachine guns and grenade launchers. The company’s headquarters is located in Oberndorf with subsidiaries in the United Kingdom, France and the United States. The company’s motto is ‘Keine Kompromise’ (No Compromises). HK provides firearms for many military and paramilitary units, including the SAS, KMar, Navy SEALs, Delta Force, HRT, KSK, and GSG 9 and many other counter-terrorist and hostage rescue teams.

Wolf’s assigned area was the Western United States and Hawaii. He would travel about two weeks out of the month and work the rest of the time from his home in Oceanside, California. He had just returned from a trip to Seattle when he heard the doorbell ring and went to answer it. A middle aged woman was standing outside. “May I help you?”

            “You don’t remember me, do you?” The woman said.

            “Not really.”

            “You only saw me a few minutes and it was pretty chaotic at the time. I was with the group in Israel that you and your men rescued. I am Elaine Manning.”

            “Manning, any relation to Paul Manning?”

            “He was my husband,” Elaine said.

            “Oh, what can I do for you?”

            “May I come in, I have something to tell you,” Elaine asked


Wolf pointed to the living room and they sat down, “My husband did not die from a brain bleed, he was poisoned. Your actions had nothing to do with his death.” Elaine said.

            “I appreciate knowing that, but it’s been two years…why now?”

            “My husband was into a lot of nefarious business dealings. He was using that tour as cover to meet with Iranian agents and leaders of Hamas. One of his specialties was money laundering. When several millions turned up missing, they blamed him for it. Hamas leadership thought if they kidnapped the tour group, it would motivate him to give the money back.”

Wolf thought for a minute, “Did he?”

            “Did he what?”

            “Steal the money?” Wolf iterated.

            “Probably, it wouldn’t surprise me. Paul was not an honest man.”

            “You seem to know a lot about your husband’s business,” Wolf stated.

            “I was a Senator’s aide when I met Paul. He offered me a bribe for inside information on an investigation. Let’s just say, we both had an addiction to the high life and didn’t mind breaking the law to have it. Paul paid the price and now it’s my turn.”

            “That’s  an interesting admission, but why tell me?” Wolf said.

            “If I’m going to ask for your help, I want to make sure that you know what’s going on,” Elaine answered.

            “My husband was just a very small cog in a massive machine of corruption that includes; currency manipulation, money laundering, human trafficking, arms and drug dealing. This is a voracious octopus with an all- consuming appetite. What they can’t devour or exert undue influence over, they’ll destroy. Jeffrey Epstein, Harvey Weinstein, El Chapo, Bernie Madoff, Charles Manson, Whitey Bulger are or were members of the Cabal.”

A cabal is a group of people united to promote their private views or interests in an ideology, state or society. They usually operate in secret and will use any means to accomplish their goals including murder and torture

            “I’ve heard rumors of this secret organization before, “Wolf said, “Never knew anybody who was actually connected to it.”

            “My husband kept detailed records of his transactions including names, dates, places,” Elaine said, “He thought it would be a good insurance policy.”

            “Obviously not for him.”

            “We have a son that we kept unaware from our activities and I was prepared to stay silent if they left us alone. He’s been kidnapped and unless I turn over all of my husband’s records, they’re going to kill him.”

            “In these kinds of situations, the kidnappers have no way of being sure that you don’t have copies of everything. You are a loose end and so is your son and their best course of action is elimination, not negotiation.  They just want to know what you have.”

            “That’s what I figured too,” Elaine agreed, “There’s an investigation going on right now in Congress about Ukraine. A lot of deep state swamp dwellers are extremely nervous that this inquiry is going to lead to other investigations where their names could come up.”

            “I’d be concerned too if I was in their position,” Wolf said.

            “They crossed a red line when they took my son,” Elaine’s anger was evident, “I’ll make a deal with you, I’ll give you everything that I have including documentation that will clear your name, if you can get my son back.”

            “There are companies who specialize in hostage rescue, I can give you their names if you want.”

            “I can’t take the chance that they are not connected to the organization.” Elaine replied. 

            “How do I know that this information is everything you say it is?” Wolf asked

Elaine handed Wolf a flash-drive and a business card when she stood up, “This is my private number, I’ll need your answer within 12 hours.”

            “You’ll have it,” Wolf promised.

Wolf was not a man that was easily surprised, but the information on the flashdrive was so incriminating and extensive that he had to stop reading every so often just to take it all in. When he finished, he took a deep breath and dialed a number, “I’m in.”

Elaine made contact with the kidnappers and agreed to give them the information in exchange for her son. They agreed to meet in an open field west of the Highway 76 exit off Interstate 15. The kidnappers told Elaine that a yellow flag would be posted to designate the exact location. Instead of Elaine showing up with the information, it was Wolf that showed up. Three armed men approached from a wooded area while Wolf stood next to the yellow marker.

            “Where’s Elaine Manning?” A man asked while his two comrades searched Wolf for weapons and communications devices.”

            “He’s clean,” Second man said.

            “She asked me to make the delivery,” Wolf replied.

            “Let’s see it,” The man demanded.

            “I need proof of life first,” Wolf responded.

The man waved and Trey Manning was pushed into view. Wolf reached into his right sock and pulled out the flash-drive and handed it to the man. He immediately gave it to the third man who inserted it into a laptop. He evaluated it for two minutes, forwarded it and when he received confirmation that it was acceptable.  “It’s good.”

            “You got what you wanted, now send the boy over,” Wolf said.

The man in charge called to his comrades who were situated around the area, “You see anybody?”

One by one they responded, “All clear.”

The man in charge smiled, “Whatever that lady is paying you, it isn’t enough.”

Wolf had seen these kinds of men before, they were arrogant and unable to think outside the box, “She’s not paying me anything, I’m doing it for free.”

The three men burst into laughter and the leader bellowed “You’re dumber than you look. Take a good look around because this is where you and the boy are going to be sleeping with the worms.”

Wolf raised his hand to his face and five of the deadliest snipers that ever served in Special Operations shot every man in the area, leaving only the leader standing before Wolf still alive. When he realized what had happened, he reached for his weapon, but he was too slow, Wolf punched him in the throat and crushed his windpipe.

Wolf returned the boy to his mother then escorted them across the border into Mexico with their fake passports and met with a group of Mexican Marines. “I have a friend who has a home in Lake Chapala. These gentlemen will make sure that you get there safely.”

            “How long before we can come back?” Elaine asked.

            “It might be a while, I’ll let you know.”

Wolf stopped off at a friend’s house in Encinitas who was a cyber security expert and red hat hacker. (Red hats are usually found on the outskirts of the hacking community and often are the most sophisticated hackers of them all. Red hats do not play by society’s rules.)

            “How do you want to do this?” The Red Hacker asked.

Wolf knew that a powerful organization like the Cabal had the ability to plug a few media leaks, but what about a few thousand of them? That might even be beyond their abilities.  “Can you send it to every newspaper, cable network, intelligence agency and politician in the world without it being tracked?”

The red hacker confidently replied, “Ask me something difficult. I’ll piggyback the information (Piggybacking on internet access is the practice of establishing a wireless internet connection by using another subscriber’s service without their knowledge or consent) onto a couple of hundred different signals then bounce around the world a few dozen times. I’ll even post it on the dark web.”

It would only be a matter of time before members of this villainous organization started rolling over on each other. For those few that managed to slip through the cracks, they would still have to face punishment. Wolf had the weapons, skillset and motivation to implement Extreme Oversight and like his company’s motto vowed, there would be No Compromises.

The End


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  1. Joe says:

    I realize that there is probably such a cell out there. I am just waiting to find out what Hillary meant when told Trump had won the election and she said “we will all go to jail”. Good story, again.

  2. Ronald Pickett says:

    Anoither good story Tom

  3. John michels says:

    Where is the rest of the story Tom?

  4. Pat says:

    Obviously a lot shorter than usual. But I liked it a lot

  5. Tony says:

    Mr. Calabrese is off to a roaring start with his Vista Press Sunday column. This Sunday’s story is packed with action and intrigue. The events depicted could easily be fact in today’s cyber world. This story is worth reading twice because of the information contained.
    Nice going and enlightening.

  6. Janet says:

    Another happy ending! I wish we could issue a vote of “no confidence” with most of our government today. This sounds eerily similar to today’s corrupt politicians – great timing for sure.

  7. Clyde says:

    This story revolved more around one event than a story than has numerous events and are much longer. I like it both ways.

  8. Cary says:

    Another hard hitting story.

  9. Jeremy says:

    Short ,but good…got right to the point

  10. Steve says:

    Good story..wished it could have been longer

  11. Vern says:

    Good to see Mike in action and the Apple(pupil) of God’s eye….. Israel as backdrop.

  12. Skip says:

    Thanks, Tom. A good read, nice detail and a Marine major to boot! Semper Fidelis!

  13. Tanya says:

    Very timely story.

  14. Sandman says:

    Good story, my question is, is the fictional, or based off of an actual event?

  15. Guy says:

    Thanks again for a good story

  16. Kyle says:

    Major Bob Wolf…if you are part of the Cabal, then you’re in big trouble.

  17. Dana Shepard says:

    A Marine on a mission is a very dangerous weapon

  18. wolf says:

    short story, but another good one. Lessons learned: do not screw with A mother’s son and underestimate a Marine

  19. Mona says:

    Good story Tom!

  20. Terry Lutz says:

    I like your reference to the Ukraine situation Tom.

  21. Stephanie Boren says:

    Always a fun read

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