We signed contracts during Gulf 1, 4 days after the 82nd went (Aug. 6).
In basic, we were told that the 82nd (our contracts were MOS 11x 82nd Abn) was in hand-to-hand with Saddam's elite (an inspiring lie, and I was very happy with myself not to feel any fear upon the announcement).
In reality, the air war started when I was in basic (delayed enlistment from Aug had me at Benning in Dec). The ground war started and ended while I was in jump shool. I arrived at my unit ~1 month after they got home. everyone had a CIB and a patch o their right shoulder. They all had 1000s in the bank, and we newbs (we still said cherry in those days) were not invited. Eventually, I earned the respect I needed and made E4 in ~26 months from dec. I had the choice to go to ranger school or take my ~60k scholarship (GI Bill/College Fund). I had spent ~3 years in the unit peacetime and there was no likely combat anytime soon. I had not joined for training and so I took the college money. I'm finishing my PhD now, ecology, agriculture, rural Kenya (I'm in 'suburbs' at the moment for electricity for computer modeling).
We made the deal after we got to the 82nd and the war was over (despite requests, we were assigned to different brigades, he 325 me 505) and it appeared only small-scale conflicts were likely. It could be my, his or the third brigade on DRF 1-3 during any given event. During blackhawk down, my unit was on DRF1. We unloaded uniforms, etc, at green ramp and loaded only live ammo. The jump was cancelled (rumor is after a pentagon go) and we didn't get on the birds. I wish we had.
18 hours, anywhere in the world, fight on arrival.
I missed combat. I tried. I would have been the first reinforcements to the 82nd in Gulf 1 and I was very close to Somalia. I spent a night talking after some ambush training in Arkansas with a ranger who was in Somalia.
Combat does not necessarily make one a better soldier (experience notwithstanding potential). Only some get a chance to shine. It's just luck. We all train and pray for war.
Last edited by ecofarm; 05-04-11 at 06:24 AM.
Maybe after he's dead.
- Colonel Paul YinglingNobody who wins a war indulges in a bifurcated definition of victory. War is a political act; victory and defeat have meaning only in political terms. A country incapable of achieving its political objectives at an acceptable cost is losing the war, regardless of battlefield events.
Bifurcating victory (e.g. winning militarily, losing politically) is a useful salve for defeated armies. The "stab in the back" narrative helped take the sting out of failure for German generals after WWI and their American counterparts after Vietnam.
All the same, it's nonsense. To paraphrase Vince Lombardi, show me a political loser, and I'll show you a loser.
It should be released in time.... In time...
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It should be released sometime. "Ever" is a very long time.
There's no hurry and quite a number of reasons to delay releasing the names. But eventually the names will all be released. Idk, the details on when that info becomes declassified, but it will one day be declassified.
I may be wrong.
Releasing the name of the "assassian" (because that's how OBL's death will be viewed in the Muslim world now that it's come out that he was unarmed, yet shot X2 by US Special Forces) will only place his life and that of his family in jeapordy.
You keep that intel more secret that "Who killed Jimmy Hoffa?", or "Were there really 2 shooters in the assasination of JFK?".
NO, it is unnecessary information, and it seems it runs counter to much of what the SEALS are about. Professional, team based, non glory seeking, get the job done bad asses specializing in covert operations.
The specific level of knowledge regarding who pulled the trigger on the fatal shot should remain as it is currently: A member of a non specified team of SEALS who drew the orders and then went in and did their job.
Last edited by marduc; 05-04-11 at 09:38 AM.
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