After the start of an illegal CIA operation in Afghanistan, William Rawlins and Major Ray Schoonover founded a task force of elite soldiers from various United States military subdivisions, such as United States Marine Corps, United States Navy SEALs, Delta Force and others. The newly-created Cerberus Squad was stationed in Kandahar. Their missions included the capture, interrogation, and elimination of high value targets. Cerberus Squad also included Colonel Morty Bennett and corrupt Homeland Security SAC Carson Wolf, who supervised the operations.
To both finance and profit from Cerberus Squad's operations Rawlins used Afghan heroin smuggled it into the United States in the bodies of American soldiers. Cerberus Squad captured Afghan National Police officer Ahmad Zubair, who investigated the task force's illegal activities in Kandahar. Zubair was labeled as a terrorist by Rawlins, who tortured him in order to find out who else knew about the operation. When Zubair did not reveal his confidant, he was executed by Frank Castle and buried outside of Kandahar.
Afghan insurgent groups caught on to Cerberus Squad's existence and tactics, so they leaked information that a high-ranking insurgent leader was in Kandahar in an isolated compound. Rawlins ordered Cerberus Squad to attack the compound, despite the risk of ambush and a terrain unsuited for helicopter evacuation. The battle proved to be a disaster, with Schoonover losing an arm and most of the squad dead or injured.
The remaining squad members were saved due to Castle's actions, single-handedly fighting his way into the compound and killing the insurgents inside. When returning to base, Rawlins callously and repeatedly asked the surviving squad members if they eliminated their target, unconcerned with the heavy casualties taken. Angry, Castle punched Rawlins in the side of head hard enough to puncture the orbital socket and blind him in the left eye. With the the loss of confidence in Rawlins' leadership and Cerberus Squad's heavy losses, Operation Cerberus soon shut down and Cerberus Squad was demobilised.
Frank Castle's Nightmare
While Frank Castle was heavily wounded by Anvil agents, he had a dream about thanksgiving diner with his family and Liebermans. However, Castle noted that he was tied to chair and masked members of the Cerberus Squad entered the room. Despite Castle's pleas, soldiers surrounded Castles and Liebermans and after shooting David Lieberman in the head, they brutally executed Maria Castle, Sarah Lieberman, Zach Lieberman, Lisa Castle and Frank Castle, Jr., in front of helpless Castle.
In chronological order:
- The Punisher
- The Punisher