The Battle of COP Keating (Kamdesh) was one of the hardest fought and bloodiest battles of the Afghanistan War. On October 3, 2009, Combat Outpost Keating was attacked by around 300 heavily-armed Taliban soldiers. Their positions in the mountains above the exposed camp gave the Taliban a tremendous advantage over the U.S. Army detachment stationed at the base. The desperate defense of Combat Outpost Keating would lead to many heroic moments, and two American soldiers – Staff Sergeant Clint Romesha and Specialist Ty Carter would earn the Medal of Honor for their actions in the battle. Now director Rod Lurie is bringing this epic battle to the big screen in the 2020 release of The Outpost.
The movie, based upon Jake Tapper’s 2012 book – “The Outpost: An Untold Story of American Valor” – and directed by Rod Lurie is a gripping, realistic account of the challenges faced by the U.S. service members stationed in this remote part of Afghanistan. While the plot extends to the period before the battle, the movie’s climax is the October 3, 2009 Battle of COP Keating. The action sequences are powerful, gripping, and representative of the types of weapons used in the battle. But more than just the action sequences, the movie does a fantastic job capturing the salty banter of combat soldiers far from home. Here you see men from different parts of the United States and from different ethnic groups banding together, in the face of great dangers, to form the type of bonds that will drive their selfless acts in support of one another.
Outside of a few minor deviations from the historical account, The Outpost goes to great lengths to be historically accurate and representative of the type of warfare faced in Afghanistan’s mountains.
From a Medal of Honor point of view, the film does give a fair amount of attention to both SSGT Clint Romesha and Specialist Ty Carter’s roles and contributions. Romesha’s character is played by actor Scott Eastwood and Carter’s by Caleb Landry.
Undoubtedly, The Outpost will quickly become one of the classic movies associated with the United States’ long involvement in Afghanistan.