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« That's the thing about mines: war or not - win, lose - they don't go away.
Nathan MacDade
»


Nathan MacDade the main protagonist in ArmA 3's Remnants of War campaign.

Background

MacDade is a veteran field consultant who works for the International Development and Aid Project (IDAP) Non-Government Organisation.

In 2009, he was deployed for a tour of duty in Chernarus as an EOD specialist and combat engineer with the U.S. Marines. During and after the civil war, he helped to disarm Unexploded Ordnance (UXO) and other landmines scattered throughout the country's South Zagoria region.

MacDade was eventually discharged from the USMC and joined the IDAP as a military consultant shortly afterwards. When the NGO was sent on an aid mission to the wartorn nation of Takistan in 2020, he would also meet and become good friends with U.S. Army Staff Sergeant Adams.

At some point during this time, MacDade was engaged to his current wife and would become married.

Remnants of War (2034)

Four years after the end of the fighting on the Mediterranean island nation of the Republic of Altis and Stratis, the IDAP continued its humanitarian mission as part of an ongoing effort to deal with the civil war's aftermath.

This mainly involved supporting displaced citizens who were caught between the government's attempts to deal with an insurgent uprising, which was gradually gaining traction over the past years.

« Our camp in the town - I still remember it - clear as day. It was mainly logistics, but we did have a doctor - and an ambulance.
MacDade
»

At this time, MacDade was a part of small group of volunteers who were assigned to the mountain village of Oreokastro in the country's far north-west corner. The isolated villagers, under minimal government supervision, were supported by the IDAP's steady stream of relief supplies, which helped to keep Oreokastro running despite general shortages throughout the country.

MacDade was well-known amongst the locals, and was particularly close to a pair of brothers who ran the local vehicle repair shop. Whenever MacDade's van broke down, the younger brother would always fix it at minimal cost. He also knew the local priest, Father Georgiopoulis, and maintained close contact with his old friend SSgt. Adams, who served as the liaison from NATO's Task Force Aegis to the local garrison.

Oppression

« This place never supported the military takeover - the Kavala Coup and all that. Plus, stationing troops in the town? Nobody believed the government's spin about 'training'. They were seen as an occupying force - there to keep a lid on things.
MacDade on the government's troop surge
»

Unfortunately, this fragile "peace" was not to last as the village would soon be placed under heavier supervision by the government. In light of the failed uprising at Kavala a week earlier, the once minimally guarded Orekastro faced an influx of military troops. To the annoyance of the locals, this caused widespread anger and many began to overtly detest the government.

MacDade remembered one local in particular; the cafe owner, charging government troopers double as a "tourist tax". The cafe owner, as MacDade remembered him, would "disappear" after being dragged off by government troops one night and never returned.

The rapidly deteriorating situation also meant that MacDade's team had not been able to get a resupply for weeks. The IDAP camp was now relocated to the centre of the village at the church, but the crisis had gotten so bad that NATO forces had to paradrop in emergency supplies for the aid workers.

« Those guys at the outpost - the ones murdered by the guerrillas - they never even got a shot off.
MacDade remembers the night Oreokastro fell under the FIA's control
»

Things in the village took an even worse turn when the shaky ceasefire between the insurgents and the government collapsed entirely. Heightened resentment was now at breaking point, and eventually led to open rebellion as the villagers, covertly supported by the insurgents, led an armed uprising and overthrew the government forces in the village.

Since they played no part in the civil conflict, the IDAP volunteers continued their mission despite the occupation by the guerillas. And aside from those who supported the guerillas, many of the villagers fled when the ceasefire began to fall apart. For MacDade, he stayed behind in the camp with the others; despite the government's announcement to lay siege to it days later.

Devastation
True to their word, government forces surrounded the now-fortified village. For two weeks, MacDade's team could do little but watch in fear as the fighting dragged on, with neither side gaining any ground.

The siege ultimately came to a boiling point when government forces, in an act of desperation, decided to bombard the village with a cluster bomb. Fortunately for MacDade's team, they were spared from the bomb's effects and managed to survive; the rest of the guerillas and citizens were not so lucky, with everything else being burnt to cinders.

« And IDAP, we did what we could. But... there were so many wounded. So many we'd never be able to identify.
MacDade
»

Government forces soon swept through the village in the aftermath and mopped up the remaining fighters. MacDade's team and the sole survivor, Markos Kouris (the local mechanic), were later evacuated from Oreokastro.

Remnants of War (2035)

Campaign remnants of war

MacDade returns to Orekastro one year later.

« I focus on my work - get the job done - but, now and again? It's hard not to think: what happened to the folks here?
MacDade is recalled to what's left of Oreokastro
»

One year later, MacDade is asked to return to Oreokastro when reports come in of a civilian having been killed by landmines at the now-abandoned village.

Assisted by Andy Paterson, the duo made their way back to the ruins, bypassing several NATO checkpoints along the way. They arrive on the outskirts of Oreokastro but are told to wait; the road ahead was still heavily mined and NATO forces were waiting on their demolitions vehicle. MacDade volunteered instead to disarm the heavier anti-vehicle mines by hand while the soldiers prepared their equipment.

During this time, he was interviewed by AAN World News journalist Katherine Bishop, who had arranged to conduct their conversation online via phone so that she could complete her article on the tragedy at Oreokastro.

MacDade first recalled his memories of IDAP's operations at Oreokastro. Dating back more than a year, he discussed his relations with the locals, SSgt. Adams of TF Aegis, and the growing tensions between government forces and the rise of the guerillas.

« The medical items... you can imagine how pleased we were to see those arrive.
MacDade
»

The first memory dates back more than a year ago and dealt with SSgt. Adams and a supply airdrop. Supplies in the IDAP camp were running critically low and urgently needed to be airdropped in by NATO. When asked why they couldn't be brought in by ground, MacDade explained that the roads were simply too dangerous to travel through with guerillas and armed bandits ambushing government convoys regularly.

Before they could continue talking, Paterson gave MacDade the heads up that the NATO demolitions vehicle was finally ready. Falling back to let the NATO soldiers handle the rest, the anti-personnel mines were safely detonated, and Paterson was cleared to drive on through to the village itself.

Driving up and parking near one of the dilapidated homes, Nathan unpacked his gear and began the slow and arduous process of finding each and every single one of the UXO fragments embedded in the buildings. He noted a set of landmines placed near the road that were of the anti-personnel and anti-tank variety, which immediately reminded MacDade of Alexis Kouris, the other brother that he knew from the village.

Tale of Two Brothers
He recalled when Alexis first got wind of the government's intent to lay siege on the village (which had been taken over by the FIA at this point). Planting what he described as a "hybrid" minefield, the ex-soldier helped to barricade the town in preparation for the government's assault. MacDade also remembered how Alexis requisitioned vehicles from the locals to do so and as a result, had inadvertently made the villagers unwilling culprits in the siege.

« As for the vehicles in the barricade, the commission actually linked the plates to a number of locals. Of course, several were still missing after the incident, so the investigation... made some assumptions.
MacDade
»

Returning to the present day, MacDade clears one of the ruins and stumbles onto a leftover laser designator lying on a table. As Katherine questions him on the chain of events that led to the airstrike, he explained that the government was being heavily pressured in light of their embarrassing inability to break the guerilla fortifications.

In the report that investigated the aftermath of the airstrike, Katherine noted that publicly, CSAT had denied any allegations of being involved despite eyewitness reports of their presence. MacDade confirmed that a local herder; who apparently saw the spotters infiltrate the nearby castle ruins, had indeed testified as such. Even so, MacDade pointed out that his testimony was unreliable at best since other evidence; such as the presence of NATO mil-spec bullet casings (different to those chambered by the guerillas), had been found at the castle ruins too.

Before he could elaborate, a drone flies in carrying the gear that he needed to continue disarming the explosives. The interview then shifted back to topic of the sole survivor from the siege.

« We talked a few times after. I dunno, he seemed different. But, like I said: he kept looking for his brother.
MacDade
»

Katherine was told by MacDade about how the heavily injured Markos limped his way through all the gunfire and burning buildings to reach the IDAP camp. The government had sent a truck to pick up the survivors in the aftermath, but one image stood out to MacDade in particular: Markos simply walking through the camp desperately calling out for his brother.

By now, over half of the UXO at Oreokastro had been cleared and Paterson informed MacDade that the NATO soldiers had retrieved the bodies of their deceased comrades at the church, permitting MacDade to go in by himself. Still littered with AP mines, MacDade remembered the name of the government trooper who had helped the IDAP mark their positions.

He recalled how the trooper was the subordinate of an officer named Thanos Gavras, a Major who led a team of troops to act as a diversion force during NATO's counterinvasion of Altis weeks earlier. Maj. Gavras' forces were easily overrun during the initial stages of the invasion, and retreated to the church in Oreokastro to make a last stand.

The mines they indiscriminately planted to cover their retreat were responsible for the deaths of several NATO soldiers and FIA rebels. Among those killed was Alexis, who had been pursuing the duo alongside his fellow guerillas.

« To think, he'd survived all that... just to return to the same spot, less than a year later...
MacDade
»

Tragically, as MacDade would finally discover moments later, Markos was also one of those victims. Having returned to Oreokastro to search for his brother, he inadvertently stepped onto one of the mines planted during Gavras' last stand and was instantly killed.

Bitter Memories
Thanks to MacDade's information, Katherine had compiled enough details by now to finish her piece on the events at Oreokastro. She posed one final question to MacDade, and asked for his personal opinion on who was to blame for all the destruction.

MacDade pointed out that there was no single entity that could be held accountable for all the bloodshed. Every side; the guerillas, CSAT, NATO, the AAF, everyone played their part in allowing the slaughter to continue. And at the end of it all, only the villagers paid the ultimate price.

« I'd have to say - y'know, I'm not sure. I mean, I don't think it's quite so 'black and white'. It's more... black and grey. Hell, grey and grey, y'know? No one side can be held accountable for the bloodshed here. No one action got us where we are now. I dunno. What can we do? Just... double-down on our efforts. Heal the wounds... And the folks here in Oreokastro? They're the ones that've suffered.

This is the reality.

This is war.
MacDade places the blame on all sides for the bloodshed at Oreokastro
»

Post-Remnants of War

« Ahuh - next job - some truck hit an AT mine yesterday. Little ways out from here. I said we'd check up on it.
MacDade prepares to head off to another site to clean
»

With Oreokastro cleared of UXO, MacDade's last tie to the mountain village was severed. As a token of appreciation, Katherine also showed MacDade a preliminary copy of her article. MacDade helped correct minor parts of her article, and then concluded their phone interview, wishing her a farewell.

Heading back to the van, MacDade rouses Paterson from his nap and begins to pack up their gear. But with an estimated 7,000 (6,938 with Oreokastro's clean up) landmines and UXO scattered on the mainland of Altis alone, many more places like Oreokastro needed IDAP's help.

There will still be hundreds of minefields for MacDade to clear in the years to come...

Personality and Appearance

MacDade is a white male in his early fifties with a black, balding head of hair and a faint moustache.

When he was a volunteer aid worker, he chose to wear a simple orange shirt with shorts, sandals, and a white-coloured vest with the IDAP logo emblazoned on it. Years later as a field consultant and EOD specialist however, he opted for a dark blue poloshirt with cream-coloured pants and a blue safety vest/helmet, along with a pair of safety goggles for eye protection.

A relatively easygoing person, MacDade handily got along with most of the individuals that he encountered. He was happy to talk about the past or present, whether it be discussing military-related topics or just small talk. His years of operating in warzones and mine disposal have also hardened him in spite of all the tragedies and horrors that he experienced firsthand (Oreokastro being a prime example).

Trivia

  • After Victor Troska and Brian Frost, MacDade is the third protagonist in the series who isn't an active duty serviceman.
  • He is voiced by Lane Davies.

Gallery

See also