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US Marine Creates Amazing Combat Scenes With Star Wars Action Figures
Marine Sgt. Matthew Callahan, a combat correspondent and former infantryman, has created a photo essay using small Star Wars action figures to portray intense combat scenes and breath life into the grunts of of the Star Wars universe.
Callahan is well positioned to tell a fictional story of wartime service behind Star Wars characters. His Marine Corps career career began six years ago, when he enlisted as an infantryman. Shortly into his first deployment to Afghanistan with 2nd Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment, he broke his leg and was sent home to recover at Wounded Warrior Battalion-West’s Hawaii detachment. While there, he learned photography and transitioned from the infantry to become a Marine combat correspondent.
Callahan is currently attending photojournalism training at Syracuse University as part of a Department of Defense program there. Outside of his studies and his work with the Marine Corps, Callahan has started this Star Wars project. Callahan’s work does not just create a life-like and moving scene from a plastic toy, it presents a humanity to the faceless Storm Troopers and other characters that, for decades, have been faceless icons in the American consciousness. With an infantry Marine’s perspective and a talented photographer’s skills, Callahan creates spectacular battle scenes and portraits of the fighters.
He titled his essay “Galactic Warfighters.” In this Instagram post, he poses with one of his action figures.
A photo posted by Matthew Callahan (@galactic_warfighters) on
"I feel being a former infantryman gives me a better perspective and will serve me well in telling the stories of Marines from the ground combat element especially,” Callahan told Business Insider in 2013. “Civilians have a genuine interest in knowing about the ins and outs of Marine life and I have a genuine desire to tell them. It's incredibly satisfying and a wicked good time.”
Follow Callahan on Instagram at bridgingthe__gap
See more of Callahan’s work here.
Here are some of his scenes from “Galactic Warfighter.”
A Clone Commander takes cover as enemy sniper fire grazes his position.
A Clone Commander drags a wounded clone out of a kill zone after being ambushed by separatist forces.
Advanced Reconnaissance Commandos make their way up a mountainside to stand up a listening/observation post for their battalion's forward operating base in the valley below.
Portrait of a Galactic Warfighter: "I think the longest I stayed put was about 10 or 11 days scouting a separatist forward operating base. The brush starts talking to you after a while."
Advanced Recon and Airborne Commandos fire a Mk 153 shoulder-fired multi-purpose assault weapon during joint weapons system familiarization training. The projectile explosive weapon is used to bust tanks and bunkers for light infantry. The troopers worked together as gunners and assistant gunners to get used to operating in the same environment together for future operations.
Portrait of a Galactic Warfighter: "Our radios never work. They spent all this time training us, making us, and they couldn't issue us good comms."
Advanced recon commandos stack up on a compound wall and make entry to eliminate a suspected Separatist intelligence cell in Mos Eisley, Tatooine.
A Marine grunt stationed in Camp Lejeune, North Carolina is being considered for an award after he saved the lives of three people earlier this month from a fiery car crash.
Cpl. Scott McDonell, an infantry assaultman with 1st Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, was driving down Market Street in Wilmington in the early morning hours of Jan. 11 when he saw a car on fire after it had crashed into a tree. Inside were three victims aged 17, 20, and 20.
"It was a pretty mangled wreck," McDonell told ABC 15. "The passenger was hanging out of the window."
‘I made promises to the people that I lost’— How the Iraq war forged a Navy SEAL’s path to Harvard Medical School and NASA
Navy Lt. Jonny Kim went viral last week when NASA announced that he and 10 other candidates (including six other service members) became the newest members of the agency's hallowed astronaut corps. A decorated Navy SEAL and graduate of Harvard Medical School, Kim in particular seems to have a penchant for achieving people's childhood dreams.
However, Kim shared with Task & Purpose that his motivation for living life the way he has stems not so much from starry-eyed ambition, but from the pain and loss he suffered both on the battlefields of Iraq and from childhood instability while growing up in Los Angeles. Kim tells his story in the following Q&A, which was lightly edited for length and clarity:
New Vietnam War movie 'The Last Full Measure' takes some well-deserved shots at the military’s award process
Todd Robinson's upcoming Vietnam War drama, The Last Full Measure, is a story of two battles: One takes place during an ambush in the jungles of Vietnam in 1966, while the other unfolds more than three decades later as the survivors fight to see one pararescueman's valor posthumously recognized.
With ISIS trying to reorganize itself into an insurgency, most attacks on U.S. and allied forces in Iraq are being carried out by Shiite militias, said Air Force Maj. Gen. Alex Grynkewich, the deputy commander for operations and intelligence for U.S. troops in Iraq and Syria.
"In the time that I have been in Iraq, we've taken a couple of casualties from ISIS fighting on the ground, but most of the attacks have come from those Shia militia groups, who are launching rockets at our bases and frankly just trying to kill someone to make a point," Grynkewich said Wednesday at an event hosted by the Air Force Association's Mitchell Institute for Aerospace Studies.