Why some Marines fear Afghan allies more than the Taliban

Around 8 p.m. on Aug. 10, 2012, which the Marines present described as an unusually dark, moonless night, the two friends entered the gym, where Cpl. Richard “Richie” Rivera and Lance Cpl. Gregory “Buck” Buckley Jr. were already working out. Soon after, they were joined by Sgt. Daniel Burlap and U.S. Navy Corpsman David “Doc” Oliver.

The workout buddies were doing chest presses at the flat bench, next to the gym entrance. Rhode was wearing headphones and listening to Steely Dan on his iPod. He moved to a different machine under the guard tower at the back of the gym. Dickinson stayed at the bench.

Their last minute of peace was 8:19 p.m.

At 8:20, a young man in traditional Afghan dress approached the gym’s entrance, carrying an AK-47 set on full automatic fire.