The Hunters Are Hunted

A bloody surprise on the mountain for attacking troops

The fighting around the Guazapa volcano was observed firsthand by TIME Photographer Harry Mattison, the only journalist permitted to accompany the Salvadoran troops for three days during the fiercest combat. Mattison's account begins as he boards a helicopter gunship:

The sun is already beginning to slant low as we head toward the volcano. Smoke trails in long plumes from a dozen places on the mountainside. We come in over a cluster of bombed-out buildings, low enough to see through the gaps in the crushed orange tile...

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