female Air Force sniper who shot a Taliban bomber -Fiction!
Summary of the eRumor: A forwarded email with a photo and story of an unnamed
19 year old former cheerleader who is now a U.S. Air Force Security
Forces Sniper. The email says that she shot a Taliban dead in his
tracks from 725 yards away while he was trying to plant an improvised
story of the 19 year old cheerleader and the 725 yard shot that killed
the Taliban is fiction. Both the story and the poster are
young lady in the photograph is real and is in fact a U. S. Air Force
sniper and a hero in her own right. Senior Airman Polly-Jan Bobseine
a Journeyman in the 823rd Security Forces Squadron stationed at Moody
Air Force Base in Georgia. According to her bio,
Airman Bobseine joined the Air Force in 2003 and after completing her
training in security forces, volunteered for her current position in the
security forces. If the description on the photo had been true
then Bobseine would have been 13 when she joined the Air Force.
The minimum recruitment age is 17.
The Air Force named
Bobseine "Outstanding Airman of the Year" along with 11 other
non-commissioned officers in 2006. Bobseine's biography says
that she served in Iraq, not in Afghanistan where our men and women in
service are combating the Taliban.
Bobseine was deployed
in Iraq for 187 days of high-risk operations. Her bio says,
"Airman Bobseine discovered an improvised explosive device at an Iraqi
polling center and quickly evacuated and secured the area for explosive
ordnance disposal teams. While at Kirkuk AB, she was selectively chosen
for off-base operations and conducted more than 100 combat patrols
covering 63 square miles. She executed 12 traffic control points,
providing critical weapons trafficking deterrent. Her patrol discovered
a large munitions cache and provided security for EOD demolition."
A separate biography from the program of the Air Combat Commandís
Outstanding Airmen and First Sergeant of the Year Awards Banquet said
that Bobseine was home schooled and was already a marksman prior to
joining the Air Force. In 2000,she participated in a New York
State High-Power Rifle competition which earned her the title of Junior
for program in Adobe Acrobat PDF format.
untouched courtesy photo of Senior Airman Polly-Jan Bobseine behind an M-24 sniper rifle was taken
during weapons training as seen on a U.S. Air Force web site. The M-24
Sniper rifle has a maximum efficiency rating of 800 meters, meaning it can
hit a target at 875 yards.
Click for photo
There is no mention of
cheerleader in either of Bobseine's official Bios.
A real example of the eRumor as it has
appeared on the Internet:
A Long Distance Engagement
This nineteen-year-old ex-cheerleader (now an Air Force Security Forces
Sniper) was watching a road that led to a NATO military base when she
observed a man digging by the road. She engaged the target (i.e., she
shot him). Turned out he was a bomb maker for the Taliban and he was
burying an IED that was to be detonated when a US patrol walked by 30
minutes later. It would have certainly killed and wounded several
The interesting fact of this story is
the shot was measured at 725 yards. She shot him as he was bent over
burying the bomb. The shot went through his butt and into the bomb which
detonated; he was blown to pieces. The Air Force made a motivational
poster of her:
(Folks, that's a shot 25 yards longer
than seven football fields!)
And the last thing that came out of
his mouth...was...his ass!