Archive for the ‘Military’ Category

From Time:

Robert Maginnis, a retired Army lieutenant colonel and West Point graduate, fears that won’t happen. He spells out what he sees as the dangers of opening combat billets to women in his new book, Deadly Consequences: How Cowards Are Pushing Women into Combat. His key concern is that, under political pressure, the military will ease its standards, resulting in a less-capable force. Battleland recently conducted this email chat with him. …

What do you see as the three biggest risks to letting women serve in the combat arms?

There are a multitude of risks—far more than most people realize, especially those without military experience. Among the many risks I discuss in “Deadly Consequences” are these three:

– First, standards will be lowered. As a practical matter, there has to be a certain minimum number of women in combat units for the policy to succeed. That can be accomplished only by “gender norming” the standards for combat service. Lower standards will inevitably degrade combat effectiveness, and the nation will be less secure. There is also good evidence that the policy will harm military recruitment and retention.

– Second, women who serve as ground combatants, whether by choice or under compulsion, will suffer disproportionate physical and psychological harm.

– Third, the already serious problem of sexual assault in the military will get worse. Notwithstanding the Administration’s wishful thinking, this prediction is borne out by the statistics.

His points in general are the same ones hit on here in previous posts here: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5.

There is nothing to gain from this.  There is much to lose.

On the battlefield, there is no agency to appeal to for gender bias.  The enemy, the weather, the conditions, the misery do not care that things aren’t fair.

Torsion bars don’t care if you’re too weak to change them.  Track doesn’t care if you’re too weak to break it and rebuild it.

breaking_track mlrs

You can yell at artillery shells all you want that they’re sexist for weighing too much, but they will not care.

155 shells

90 pounds of gear on your back does not care… and the inability to do any combat job gets passed on to someone more competent, who then has to carry two loads instead of one.

US infantry

Your buddy who needs your help does not get lighter just because you’re a girl (or a weak man who only meets a girls’ standard).

Fireman_carry_Army

Men who do these jobs have to be physically strong athletes.  Those who can’t meet the standard are a continuing drag on their unit and/or are mustered out.

The few individual women who could meet the standard (and could probably get waivers and be welcomed into units that might find utility for them) are not who is being looked at here.  This is a push for cocktail party circuit politicians to say “look at the good social justice thing I did for women” that will put girls into positions that break many men, and will break women much faster and much worse.

From Breitbart:

Playboy, Penthouse and other sex-themed magazines will no longer be sold at Army and Air Force exchanges _ a move described by the stores’ operators as a business decision based on falling sales, and not a result of recent pressure from anti-pornography activists.

The 48 “adult sophisticate” magazines being dropped are among a total of 891 periodicals that will no longer be offered by the Army and Air Force Exchange Service at its stores on U.S. military bases worldwide.

Good news is the Navy and Marine Corps haven’t dropped anything yet.  With different deployment schedules and different institutional cultures, hopefully they don’t.

 

Remember, though, Hagel already declared war on pinups and is out to make the military into something else.

Morality in Media, a Washington-based anti-pornography group, called the decision “a great victory” in its campaign against sexual exploitation in the military, and said it would continue to urge operators of Navy and Marine Corps exchanges to follow suit.

Ah, yes, morality enforced by government, in this case, removal of products by a government-run store.

Hopefully the first part of the story is correct and this is an economic decision and not a morality one.  Given Hagel’s declared war on pinups, I’m very skeptical of the explanation.  If falling sales dictate removal of titles, that’s the market making a decision.  If it’s Morality in Media and other anti-freedom groups pushing for further restriction on morale-improving leisure materials (I won’t say reading) and being successful as it dovetails with Hagel’s politically correct agenda, they fall in the same category as any other group that wants more state control.

They’re just going to “nudge” people into proper behavior with coercive paternalism.  Government orders you to eat your vegetables.  Government orders you to work harder.  And government says put a coat on, it’s chilly out.

Penelope Jiminez

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As usual, Col Kurtz had this to say:

brando-apocalypse-now

We train young men to drop fire on people. But their commanders won’t allow them to write “fuck” on their airplanes because it’s obscene!

Memorial Day 2013

Posted: May 26, 2013 by ShortTimer in Military, US Military, Veterans
Tags:

I’ve got a lot of stories saved up to blog about, but like a lot of folks, have things to do besides blog.  As such, I’ve got a large number of those news stories that are still worthy of comment, but not timely enough any more for full posts.  So here goes with a few of those:

NY Post: Occupy Wall Street Mob Steals Sacred Chalice From Church

There’s no longer room at the inn at a Manhattan church that’s sheltering Occupy Wall Streeters after a holy vessel disappeared from the altar last week.

When the Rev. Bob Brashear prepared for Sunday services at West Park Presbyterian Church on West 86th Street, he noticed parts of the bronze baptismal font were gone.

In a fire-and-brimstone message to occupiers later that day, he thundered, “It was like pissing on the 99 percent.”

In Brooklyn, at another church housing OWS protesters, an occupier urinated on a cross, according to Rabbi Chaim Gruber, who has angrily abandoned the OWS movement.

The artifact vanished just three weeks after a $2,400 Apple MacBook vanished from Brashear’s office. He told the occupiers that even when the 100-year-old Upper West Side church extended help to addicts during the 1980s drug scourge, no visitors touched its $12,500 sacramental instrument.

“Not even crackheads messed with that,” he said.

Occupy Wall Street: Piss-spraying desecrating thieves that are worse than crackheads.

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NY Post: JFK’s Teen Mistress.   The UK Daily Mail’s version of intern Mimi Alford’s story it is directly from the book:

‘This is a very private room,’ he said. The next thing I knew, he was standing in front of me, his face inches away, his eyes staring directly into mine.

He placed both hands on my shoulders and guided me toward the edge of the bed. I landed on my elbows, frozen halfway between sitting up and lying on my back.

Slowly, he unbuttoned the top of my shirtdress and…

presidential casting couch

Morally objectionable is an understatement, but at least the guy understood free markets a bit and how reduced taxes help the economy.

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And from SadHill news, and sadly, it looks like it’s not parody – US Army Troops Forced to Wear Fake Belly And Empathy Breasts To Understand Pregnant Troops’ Concerns:

And if you don’t believe it, notice the video is from Stars and Stripes.  And so is this story:

This week, 14 noncommissioned officers at Camp Zama took turns wearing the “pregnancy simulators” as they stretched, twisted and exercised during a three-day class that teaches them to serve as fitness instructors for pregnant soldiers and new mothers.

Army enlisted leaders all over the world are being ordered to take the Pregnancy Postpartum Physical Training Exercise Leaders Course, or PPPT, according to U.S. Army Medical Activity Japan health promotion educator Jana York.

Somewhere, there is a balance to be struck on gender issues between having a Democrat president exploit his position to overwhelm and overpower a 19 year-old girl and the PC-gone-totally-weirdo idea of strapping a “pregnancy simulator” on Army Sergeants.

(Yes, technically field daying the folder would mean cleaning it into nothingness, but I’m just going to use it as a term to title & tag these clean-up posts.)

http://www.c-span.org/Live-Video/C-SPAN3/

Goes for a few hours yet.

If you have the time, much like the Fast and Furious hearings, it’s worth watching.  It’s fascinating to see exactly what happens and is discovered versus what the media will report afterwards.

The US Navy’s chief of information, Rear Admiral Kirby, laments that there’s a “military-civilian gap”.   But what he doesn’t understand is that it exists only to him and those in Ruling Class circles.

In more than 10 years of war, we in the military have gone to great expense and trouble to listen to the concerns of foreign peoples and cultures. We have learned Dari and Arabic and Pashto. We have sat cross-legged in shura and tribal councils. And yet I worry that we do not pay our fellow Americans the same courtesy.

It’s time that we do a better job understanding and relating to the people we serve.

Really?  Has he been reading William “Troops are vile scumbag mercenaries who should grovel before their betters” Arkin‘s pieces?

Kirby’s perspective is horribly distorted.

We do not talk with them. Too often, we talk at them. We are the guest speakers, the first-pitch-throwers, the grand marshals. We show them the power of our capabilities through air shows, port visits and other demonstrations. This outreach is important, but it isn’t always a two-way street. And it doesn’t improve our understanding of the society we defend.

No, Kirby, you’re an admiral and chief of informationYou talk at people, you are the guest speaker, the first-pitch-thrower, the grand marshal.  You attend and orchestrate the dog-and-pony shows.

This lament comes up a lot from the left, and sometimes it comes up from those stuck inside the DC bubble.

I’ll address it the same way I did last time:

There are two Americas.  There are those who serve, those who know those who serve, who understand service to the country, and those who don’t.  Leftists and mainstream media writers are constantly scribbling about this.  Read enough and you’ll find it shows up all the time.  They lament that that the military isn’t representative of the nation, especially since we’ve switched to a volunteer system.  It’s not an uncommon thing to notice.  But it’s not a disconnect between the broader US public and the military.

It’s a divide between the Country Class and the Ruling Class.  The military is the Country Class, and the Ruling Class always wonders why they aren’t represented enough.  They wonder why the military is societally so far away from them, the same way they don’t understand farmers, truckers, miners, etc.

I guess I should amend that.  Once you’re an O-7, you’re crossing over into the Ruling Class.

Kirby is an admiral and chief of information – he’s firmly in the Ruling Class.  Off the top of my head, I can name 10 coworkers who are veterans in my job.  Outside of work, back in regular life, I can come up with at least two friends from circles as far back as high school who are veterans – in circles that weren’t very military-oriented.  If I count family and those who’ve served, I end up with 5 off the top of my head.  The military and veterans don’t talk at people the way the Chief of Information Admiral does… because they aren’t the Chief of Information Admiral.

They’re people you have conversations with.  The only “talking at” comes in the form of telling people about things they have limited to no experience about – which is true of any profession.

If you end up hanging out with a gearhead and know nothing about cars, you may feel “talked at”, but that’s just because you’re getting up to speed.  Even if you know about muscle cars or imports, you may find yourself getting “talked at” as you’re brought up to speed on rat rods.

32 ford rat rod

If I talked to the owner/builder of that ride, I expect to get talked at, because I know very little about it – but if I’m engaged in conversation, I’m probably going to learn.

The rest of the Admiral’s piece, when seen with the understanding that he’s part of the Ruling Class, makes sense.  He seems to lament a disconnect between himself and the civilian world.  But it isn’t a military-civilian disconnect.  It’s between himself and his DC cronies against the Country Class.  He even writes about cultivating relationships with the Ruling Class, and yet somehow doesn’t understand that’s the problem.

Naturally he, as a Ruling Class professional leader who talks at people, has decided to talk at us again and tell us all how we need to live and act.

Secnav Mabus, in addition to naming ships afterer labor leaders like Cesar Chavez, lying blue falcon scumbags like John Murtha, is naming a new Navy littoral combat ship after Democrat Gabby Giffords… a naming purely for political purposes.

The Navy’s newest ship will be the USS Gabrielle Giffords.

Navy Secretary Ray Mabus made the announcement at a Pentagon ceremony today, calling Giffords someone whose name is synonymous with courage.

Getting shot in the head by a madman and suffering through recovery is not synonymous with any kind of courage that would warrant naming a ship after a congressman from a landlocked state.  This is politics.  It’s doing favors for Democrat politicians and it’s been doing favors for the administration by keeping Giffords and her head wound in the spotlight.  If it weren’t for her head wound, she wouldn’t be important to the Democrats at all.

The contrast is very sharp when you note that then-HM1 Holly Crabtree was shot in the head by a sniper while on patrol – and the courage it takes to go on patrols in hostile territory, risking her own life just by being there – and then surviving a headshot – is the kind of courage that might well warrant naming a ship after her… a sailor wounded in combat.

crabtree & sis

Chief Crabtree just retired from the Navy after 14 years and that serious wound that she still hasn’t recovered from.

Of course, Secnav Mabus was more interested in scoring Democrat and anti-gun political points by keeping Giffords in the spotlight:

Mabus said the notion occurred to him that this would be a “fitting tribute” not only to Giffords but to Navy families because she was a Navy spouse.  Her husband, Mark Kelly, was until recently an astronaut and Navy pilot.

Really, it’s a fitting tribute because she married a guy who drove boats?

In the navy, pilots drive boats.  Aviators fly planes.  One could probably safely assume it’s a typo, but either way, it shows that the ship is being named for no reason other than politics.

Giffords is a political prop for gun control and undermining the Constitution, and has been used as willing a political tool since she was shot.  She was also used to blame Sarah Palin, too.  The left exists only for politics.

By contrast, again from the Crabtree story:

After being wounded, Crabtree was attached to James A Haley Veterans Affairs Hospital in Tampa, Fla. While there, besides receiving therapy, she “inspired and motivated several critically wounded soldiers and instilled a positive, can-do spirit.” For that, she received her fourth Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal on Friday.

Somewhere there’s a bitter combat arms guy who’d joke about the way NAMs are handed out like candy for making people feel good, but I’d say Crabtree is the exception, not the rule.  In 2005 the GySgt in my platoon got a NAM for getting some ice out into the field when it was hot.  HM1 Crabtree is out getting people to push through serious injuries – she’s probably earned hers.

Crabtree, 32, grudgingly accepted medical retirement.

I can still move my hand. I can still walk a little bit. I’m still good. I can do something,” she said of wanting to continue her career. Finally, she gave in.

She’s a 14 year veteran and she’s only 32 years old.  She was 18 when she joined, and spent 14 years of her life in naval service.  Reread her statement again until it sinks in.  Crabtree is worthy of a ship.

I can still move my hand. I can still walk a little bit. I’m still good. I can do something.

 

chief crabtree 2

Fair winds and following seas, Chief Crabtree.