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Could Iran pull off a military upset against the US?

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posted on Dec, 18 2004 @ 06:57 PM
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Originally posted by Disturbed Deliverer
I can not argue that it has to be frustrating to be a soldier and no that you have to sacrafice for politicians, but that's the what an American soldier has to do. They should know that when they join.


Seems like we're close to on the same page, just focusing on different sides of the story.
For the life of me I can not get over the idea that we are putting the screws to our guys unnecessarily because -it's politically convenient-. I don't get it- its just not in me personally. I dont think most people could bring themselves to take time from our troops under an emergency provision just because alternatives are not politically acceptable.




posted on Dec, 18 2004 @ 07:58 PM
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Originally posted by The Vagabond

You're missing my point entirely. I am talking about how a group is run also. I am telling you that although discussion is good in a group, democracy is not. In a small group, especially for military purposes, the buck must stop with a single commander. Discussion is not democracy; Voting is democracy.

Actually thats not how its classified in military field manuals, or cadet manuals.




Although you have not given any examples it probably is true that idea were taken into consideration. This still is not democracy. In the end, the men did whatever the commander said, and they did it HARD- not just going through the motions while complaining about it. Thats how a military wins- discipline, not democracy.

They did complain, you dont get anything if you dont complain. You want artillery suport you complain you dont have it, you need more supplies you complain.





The more difficult training Marines go through leads up to one primary point- that you always follow orders with speed and intensity. If the Marines had been less disciplined they would have questioned orders, would have been uncertain, would have had problems with individualism, and would have acted just like the Army.

As my chief says it works at the start but after a while aka one day it will fail and most likely orders will NOT be followed.


The obedience to orders which Marines are trained to display is what made it possible for them to make an orderly withdrawl as an effective unit, instead of turning into a disorganized mob of scared individuals.

Induviduals is what makes the group, you start treateing a soldier like he is just the same as another then you have a problem. Is an engineer the same as a medic? No they are both skilled but have diffrent professions.


Ask yourself this: What if the Marines at Chosin had argued back and forth about taking leaving the equipment or about picking up army equipment. Not only would it have slowed them down and hurt morale but it could have triggered misunderstandings and disorganization. They could have fallen apart.

Its not my place to say the inadaqucies of the US army training in korea , now take a normal US army man would they make the same mistake? I dont know.



Servicemen can only disobey an order which is obviously illegal. This does not constitute a democracy.

Yes it does, you are a soldier and your view counts you have a say aka democracy, democracy follows a chain of comand BUT people are open to suggestions.


If your platoon is assigned a suicide mission you still have to do it- no votes, no disobedience.

Exscuse me?
You dont get "assigned" suicide missions , they are requested aka your platoon or as we clall it troop leader will be asked if his unit would undertake this mission.
You have a choice as a platton leader whether or not to take the mission, if that mission is basicaly suicide for no goal then you have every right to disobey that order. You may be courtmartialed but most likely you will be cleared of wrong doing.




You dont like it- too bad. What would have happened to Saudi Arabia if the Marines hadn't stood their ground in Desert Shield? Sure they would have been in the fight of their lives if Saddam had attacked, but if they hadn't been there Saudi Arabia would have been taken. They did what they were supposed to do- didn't disobey or try to go UA, and Saddam blinked first.

can i ask you , do you speak to service men or EX service men??
I dont mean every once in a while i mean everyweek.
They are no diffrent from you or I , they get scared, they bleed, they feel pain and they are not emotionless beings you seem to think they are.
What about the RN captain that was reassinged recently? Military order was followed there but then the captain abused it, is it right to have one erson in charge to be followed unquestioned? No the military does not believe this and its troops/sailors/airmen or what ever know if thier leader is in the wrong you cant follow thier orders.
Respect isnt given , its earned.

[edit on 18-12-2004 by devilwasp]



posted on Dec, 19 2004 @ 12:23 AM
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Actually thats not how its classified in military field manuals, or cadet manuals.


How is it classified then?

A monarchy could be a Democracy the way you seem to be describing it. There have been emperors and kings throughout history who have taken adviced from those under them. Like a officer in the military, though, they never HAD to follow through with that.


They did complain, you dont get anything if you dont complain. You want artillery suport you complain you dont have it, you need more supplies you complain.


They don't always get what they complain about fixed.


As my chief says it works at the start but after a while aka one day it will fail and most likely orders will NOT be followed.


Militaries have been doing this for centuries, and they haven't run into problems.


Induviduals is what makes the group, you start treateing a soldier like he is just the same as another then you have a problem. Is an engineer the same as a medic? No they are both skilled but have diffrent professions.


You recognize individual skills, but you also hold each to a group standard. You expect them to work as a team, and not as an individual.


Its not my place to say the inadaqucies of the US army training in korea , now take a normal US army man would they make the same mistake? I dont know.


This has nothing to do with what he stated. He was talking about taking the equipment being hard for the troops, but they still couldn't argue. They had to do it in the end no matter how they felt.


Yes it does, you are a soldier and your view counts you have a say aka democracy, democracy follows a chain of comand BUT people are open to suggestions.


Making suggestions isn't Democracy, as I pointed out above. You can make suggestions in any government system. In a Democracy, you vote, and the majority rules. In the military, a single man can overide everyone else.


You dont get "assigned" suicide missions , they are requested aka your platoon or as we clall it troop leader will be asked if his unit would undertake this mission.
You have a choice as a platton leader whether or not to take the mission, if that mission is basicaly suicide for no goal then you have every right to disobey that order. You may be courtmartialed but most likely you will be cleared of wrong doing.


The reservists in Iraq who refused to make a delivery weren't let off or forgiven because the mission may have been too dangerous.

You have an option, just like someone in a monarchy technically has an option. You probably will not get away with this kind of dissent no matter the circumstances.



posted on Dec, 19 2004 @ 03:21 AM
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Originally posted by devilwasp
Actually thats not how its classified in military field manuals, or cadet manuals.

Funny that you bring up that point. I have had a great interest in the military since middle school. I have done a great deal of reading on the subject. I was a Cadet Captain in the California Cadet Corps. I served briefly in the United States Marine Corps before developing back problems. In none of these experiences have I ever learned anything which can be construed as suggesting that military leadership is democratic in form.

The 11 leadership principles taught by the USMC imply the importance of the men to the commander via "know your marines and look out for their welfare" "keep your marines informed" and especially "develop a sense of responsibility among your subordinates".
That being said it is very clear in the principles that the men are to be lead- that the unit is not a democracy. The leadership principles, although they make it clear that the men are a primary concern and responsibility of the commander, seem to very carefully avoid the implication that the men have an inalienable role in the decision making process.
The leadership principles demand that the commander "be technically and tactically proficient" "ensure that the task is understood, supervised, and accomplished" "make sound and timely decisions" and "seek responsibility and take responsibility for your actions". These make it crystal clear that the commander is to be individually capable of command and be responsible for same because the role of making the right decisions for the unit ultimately rests entirely with the commander.

You may feel tempted to raise "know yourself and seek self improvement" as an encouragement to accept reproof from the men. This would be incorrect. Although it is wise to listen to your men, especially staff NCOs, you are in charge and must own the decision- you must not take the decision pressed by others unless you believe in it and are prepared to take responsibility for it, because the unit is not a democracy, but is under your command instead. "Know yourself and seek self improvement" encourages the commander to prepare himself for this role before the fact, not to second guess himself in the face of disagreements.



They did complain, you dont get anything if you dont complain. You want artillery suport you complain you dont have it, you need more supplies you complain.

Requesting support is not the same as democracy. OF COURSE you request the resources you need. Now follow your point to its logical conclusion though and you will see where I am coming from. If you complain that you need artillery support and the commander tells you that your platoon is lowest on the priority of fires, are you allowed to refuse the mission? Nope. The military is not a democracy where you can rule by majority or claim personal freedom from the chain of command. It is also not a despotism where you are forbidden to speak your mind. The military is however a dictatorship of sorts- you might even call it a meritocracy. The officers have the right to command. You have your right to give input and to make decisions within the scope of your orders, but ultimately you will follow your orders or you will stand before a court martial.



As my chief says it works at the start but after a while aka one day it will fail and most likely orders will NOT be followed.

I suspect that your chief intends to say that hard-headed tyranny will inevitably lose the trust of the men because sooner or later you will be wrong about something and they will feel vindicated. This is correct and is exactly why a commander must always be on the same page with his subordinate officers and NCOs, must earn their confidence with sound decision making, and must deal with them in a respectful manner while listening to their concerns.
That being said, a commander must give the command which is appropriate regardless of what the men may think of it.

I believe that the Duke of Marlborough illustrates the appropriate balance between concern for the men and the duty to command them. Marlborough excelled at moving his forces long distances in short times to force battle on unwilling opponents.
Marlborough's troops could not have been pleased by his calls on their endurance. Other English commanders would at times lose up to 1/3 of their forces to desertion and disease on a long march.
Nevertheless Marlborough made the forced march a cornerstone of his strategy and maintained his authority over the men by making the best possible preparations to replace shoes and saddles en route. His repeated success also demanded loyalty.
The lesson that can be learned from perhaps the greatest soldier in Britain's history is that you must employ your command in accordance with its capabilities- its FULL capabilites. When doing this you will certainly make strong demands of your men which they wish you would not make. The key to overcoming this situation is not to yield to their every desire in a democratic fashion but only to know your men and look out for their welfare, and again to employ your command in accordance with its capabilities- never beyond its capabilities which is only asking for failure. There is a fine line between being in charge and being a tyrant which a commander must learn to walk if he is to get the most out of his men such as Marlborough did.




Induviduals is what makes the group, you start treateing a soldier like he is just the same as another then you have a problem. Is an engineer the same as a medic? No they are both skilled but have diffrent professions.

You are clearly either misunderstanding or misrepresenting my statement. My point is that the individual will of a soldier is subordinate to that of a commander. If the individual soldier questioned the orders of the commander and considered himself free to do whatever he felt was best there would be disorder.
A unit fights as one entity, not as a group of individuals. There is one plan, one set of instructions within the scope of which any individual responsibility must be excercised. If the order is to attack, the soldier may be left some latitude but whatever he does must certainly fulfill the order to attack. If the soldier passes a judgement on the order to attack and retreats instead, his comrades in arms may very well pay with their lives.




Its not my place to say the inadaqucies of the US army training in korea , now take a normal US army man would they make the same mistake? I dont know.


Consider it a purely hypothetical light, apart from the strengths or inadequacies of various forces. If a force is forced to retreat under extreme pressure from the enemy, would arguement and disobedience be conducive to an orderly and successful withdrawl? Or would it be preferable for the men to carry out their orders with speed and intensity in recognition of the fact that a compitent officer has issued orders vital to their success?
In my opinion and in my observation of military history it is highly preferable, perhaps vital, for personal views to be made secondary to a soldiers duty to carry out orders. Soldiers who carry out their orders kill the enemy in scores. Soldiers who fail to carry out their orders kill their comrades.



Yes it does, you are a soldier and your view counts you have a say aka democracy, democracy follows a chain of comand BUT people are open to suggestions.

In a democracy the people rule. A vote by the majority is binding- period. In a military chain of command the suggestions of the men are secondary to the decision of the commander. This is comparable to a monarchy in which the king has advisors.


If your platoon is assigned a suicide mission you still have to do it- no votes, no disobedience.

Exscuse me?
You dont get "assigned" suicide missions , they are requested aka your platoon or as we clall it troop leader will be asked if his unit would undertake this mission.

Although this courtesy has been afforded to men in certain historical situations it is not a requirement. The Marines didn't volunteer to be used as a diversionary attack on the enemy strongpoint at the Halls of Montezuma- they were given a job and they had to do it.

The pilots based on Midway didn't have the option to stay on the ground and take cover- the Japanese were coming and the pilots were sent up to meet them- end of story. They had a duty to resist- to hurt the Japanese attack any way they could, and every man of them died fulfilling it.

The men who defended Wake Island couldn't over-ride the orders of the Navy. The Navy basically said "we aren't coming to get you- give em hell". There was no democracy- there was no voting on it- they were stuck out there to do what they could and they made a legendary stand. They couldn't even complain and get any help as you have talked about previously. Only one of the things they requested ever arrived- "Send us more Japs!".

So you heard me right- if your unit is given a task which you consider a suicide mission, you have to do it. If your batallion is surrounded and one company has to make a sacrificial charge to open a way out, you don't gotta like it, you just gotta do it. If I sound fanatical what can I say- what part of -Marine- don't you understand?



You have a choice as a platton leader whether or not to take the mission, if that mission is basicaly suicide for no goal then you have every right to disobey that order. You may be courtmartialed but most likely you will be cleared of wrong doing.

You are twisting my statement. If there is no goal then you are correct- to simply commit suicide is an unlawful order. If however your troop commander recieves orders to make a diversionary attack that is expected to cost 80-90% casualties then I hate to break it to you, but that's war and you have to do it.

Have you ever considered the era before firearms? Did you ever think about that poor dumb bastard at the front of the charge- that first man charging into a mass of blade-wielding enemy? Why the hell did that guy do it? Didn't he have enough common sense to run slower on the way across the field? Couldn't he have tricked the new guy into switching places with him? But hell, somebody had to do it. There was a war to be fought- there was something to accomplish that was so important that it was worth the deaths of hundreds or even thousands of men, so that poor guy stood up and took his place and did his job. A modern soldier is in the same position, and it sucks, but thats his duty. You follow your orders- somebody has to do it because there is an underlying reason for the orders being issued.




can i ask you , do you speak to service men or EX service men??
I dont mean every once in a while i mean everyweek.
They are no diffrent from you or I , they get scared, they bleed, they feel pain and they are not emotionless beings you seem to think they are.

I was a rifleman in the USMC for just under 1 year- discharged last April after an injury had kept me at the SOI for several months. I have many friends who have been to Iraq including one who has been seriously wounded. I have other friends who are WWII veterans who have shared many stories with me.
I know very well that even a Marine gets scared, that even a Marine can be killed. It is our duty to put that aside and follow orders anyway. It is drilled into us from the split second that our drill instructor boards the bus to welcome us to the Marine Corps Recruit Depot. They have a million phrases for it. Instant Willing Obedience to Orders. Speed and Intensity. Orderly Proficient Military Manner.
It's acceptable to be a thinking individual. It is unacceptable to in any way let your personal views interfere with the accomplishment of the mission you are assigned.



What about the RN captain that was reassinged recently? Military order was followed there but then the captain abused it, is it right to have one erson in charge to be followed unquestioned?

I am not familiar with the story and would appreciate a link. I suspect that the situation to which you are referring might include the issuance of illegal orders. Illegal orders are the only orders- illegal in that they clearly violate either the Uniform Code of Military Justice or International Law, are the only orders which can be violated.



No the military does not believe this and its troops/sailors/airmen or what ever know if thier leader is in the wrong you cant follow thier orders.
Respect isnt given , its earned.
[edit on 18-12-2004 by devilwasp]


The way that you define a "wrong" order is the key issue here. If the order seems like a really bad idea you still have to follow it unless the officer is found incompitent and is removed in accordance with regulations. That's up to the XO. For the enlisted soldier, any order which is not patently illegal must be followed, even if you don't respect your commander.

As for respect- it is earned, I agree. It is earned by compitence and strong leadership- not necessarily by complying with the will of the men in all situations. Furthermore the men have an obligation to respect the position even if they do not respect the man, and they are obligated to obey orders regardless of personal opinions.

It doesn't always seem right- a green Lt had authority over a salty platoon sergeant. 1Lts and Captains who have been around for 4-6 years are in charge of 1st Sgts who may be eligible for retirement already. Nevertheless, the officer is appropriately trained and comissioned to command. He is wise to listen to his NCOs- they are his eyes, ears and right hand, but when push comes to shove the officer is still in charge.

I know that sounds a lot like the way George Dubya is pushing around the American intelligence community, but that's not actually democracy.



posted on Dec, 19 2004 @ 06:46 AM
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You have voted The Vagabond for the Way Above Top Secret award. You have two more votes this month.


Good post. Seems to have moved me somehow



posted on Dec, 19 2004 @ 08:01 AM
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Look 'The Vagabond'... I think you are not hearing Devilwasp properly, He is saying that soldiers do have a free will, and if they think an order is crazy like "soldier go and run into that mine field there" they will (quite rightly) turn around a tell them to go screw themselves. But if a commanding officer tells a soldier to get up and move, that isn't a crazy order thats likely to get themselves killed, so they must obay it.

All devilwasp is saying is that; yes a soldier must obay orders, but they do have a free will, feelings, a will to live and if their CO is going to give them an order that is gunna get them killed, they can and most definitly will so no.


Hi Devilwasp.



posted on Dec, 19 2004 @ 08:22 AM
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Originally posted by The Vagabond

Funny that you bring up that point. I have had a great interest in the military since middle school. I have done a great deal of reading on the subject. I was a Cadet Captain in the California Cadet Corps. I served briefly in the United States Marine Corps before developing back problems. In none of these experiences have I ever learned anything which can be construed as suggesting that military leadership is democratic in form.

Funny completely diffrent story over here , SCC ,BTEC,RN and RM books say democracy but one leader.


The 11 leadership principles taught by the USMC imply the importance of the men to the commander via "know your marines and look out for their welfare" "keep your marines informed" and especially "develop a sense of responsibility among your subordinates".
That being said it is very clear in the principles that the men are to be lead- that the unit is not a democracy.

I agree one person must be incharge to stop chaos.



The leadership principles, although they make it clear that the men are a primary concern and responsibility of the commander, seem to very carefully avoid the implication that the men have an inalienable role in the decision making process.

The men WILL have more exsperience than you, they may have no direct say in what happens but you view will be taken intoconsideration, the same way the PM would take advice from his cabinet. They could be wrong but they could be right.


The leadership principles demand that the commander "be technically and tactically proficient" "ensure that the task is understood, supervised, and accomplished" "make sound and timely decisions" and "seek responsibility and take responsibility for your actions". These make it crystal clear that the commander is to be individually capable of command and be responsible for same because the role of making the right decisions for the unit ultimately rests entirely with the commander.

Yes the comander must make the decision but he must be able to take information in not just give it out.


You may feel tempted to raise "know yourself and seek self improvement" as an encouragement to accept reproof from the men. This would be incorrect. Although it is wise to listen to your men, especially staff NCOs, you are in charge and must own the decision- you must not take the decision pressed by others unless you believe in it and are prepared to take responsibility for it, because the unit is not a democracy, but is under your command instead. "Know yourself and seek self improvement" encourages the commander to prepare himself for this role before the fact, not to second guess himself in the face of disagreements.

Ofcourse you must not but you must be open to your men, its not just "wise" to do so its a military and civilian priority.


Requesting support is not the same as democracy. OF COURSE you request the resources you need. Now follow your point to its logical conclusion though and you will see where I am coming from. If you complain that you need artillery support and the commander tells you that your platoon is lowest on the priority of fires, are you allowed to refuse the mission? Nope.


I never implied or said that , i simply said they would have complained and that complaining is a way to get things in the military or civilain life.
If you comander says that your platoon is of the lowest priority then it is you job to MAKE him give you that support. If you believe you will not achomplish the mission with out it, it is your duty to inform the comander of this and make your poit VERY clear. I am not insinuating that you should hold them hostage or anything to that degree , i am saying you should point out the fault , privately.


The military is not a democracy where you can rule by majority or claim personal freedom from the chain of command. It is also not a despotism where you are forbidden to speak your mind. The military is however a dictatorship of sorts- you might even call it a meritocracy. The officers have the right to command. You have your right to give input and to make decisions within the scope of your orders, but ultimately you will follow your orders or you will stand before a court martial.

That is correct but the whole military comand aka flag deck level is a democracy since there is no clear leader at the operational level, there are several admirals in the RN , for exsample, but no admiral of the fleet. That rank is saved for war, the admirals must vote on a decision or the sea lords will give an order. Remember the order to attack is filtered through levels and HOW they attack is generaly decided in a democracy.



I suspect that your chief intends to say that hard-headed tyranny will inevitably lose the trust of the men because sooner or later you will be wrong about something and they will feel vindicated. This is correct and is exactly why a commander must always be on the same page with his subordinate officers and NCOs, must earn their confidence with sound decision making, and must deal with them in a respectful manner while listening to their concerns.

That is one interpretation you could say yes.


That being said, a commander must give the command which is appropriate regardless of what the men may think of it.

Regardless of what the men may think is a nice statement to say, but one must take into account what the men think, if i said at a briefing "right lads comand just ordered us to attack objective B , its highly defended and there is a good chance we could take high or full losses."
Then of course the men will think "# off!"
If i say : "right lads we just got word from command and we have the honour of going in first against the enemy at objective B , its high risk and good chance we could take wounded. "
Which of the two sounds better


I believe that the Duke of Marlborough illustrates the appropriate balance between concern for the men and the duty to command them. Marlborough excelled at moving his forces long distances in short times to force battle on unwilling opponents.

Which duke of marlbourgh? there are many. If you mean the first one then yes i agree,


The lesson that can be learned from perhaps the greatest soldier in Britain's history is that you must employ your command in accordance with its capabilities- its FULL capabilites. When doing this you will certainly make strong demands of your men which they wish you would not make. The key to overcoming this situation is not to yield to their every desire in a democratic fashion but only to know your men and look out for their welfare, and again to employ your command in accordance with its capabilities- never beyond its capabilities which is only asking for failure. There is a fine line between being in charge and being a tyrant which a commander must learn to walk if he is to get the most out of his men such as Marlborough did.

Since when in democracy does eveyone yeild to everyone elses desires. The ability to balance control and liberty in the forces is a good one and is a delecate balance.



You are clearly either misunderstanding or misrepresenting my statement. My point is that the individual will of a soldier is subordinate to that of a commander. If the individual soldier questioned the orders of the commander and considered himself free to do whatever he felt was best there would be disorder.

Ofcourse the individual will of a soldier is subordinate to the comanders BUT the will of that soldier will ethier help or damage the comanders orders, even if the soldier follows the order, its the way he follows it.


A unit fights as one entity, not as a group of individuals. There is one plan, one set of instructions within the scope of which any individual responsibility must be excercised.

They fight as one but are a group of induviduals , the individuals make the group , not the group makes the individuals.


If the order is to attack, the soldier may be left some latitude but whatever he does must certainly fulfill the order to attack. If the soldier passes a judgement on the order to attack and retreats instead, his comrades in arms may very well pay with their lives.

The soldier must do what he thinks will get the mission done, if that means your comrades die ,then as you say tough.




Consider it a purely hypothetical light, apart from the strengths or inadequacies of various forces. If a force is forced to retreat under extreme pressure from the enemy, would arguement and disobedience be conducive to an orderly and successful withdrawl? Or would it be preferable for the men to carry out their orders with speed and intensity in recognition of the fact that a compitent officer has issued orders vital to their success?

Ah you are thinking like the flag deck people that every soldier or marine thinks the same. This situation is entirely hypothetical with no actual way of the second happening in real life, the average soldier will become scared and frightned and in a retreat he will think the battle is lost, the job of a leader is to fill that man back up with courage. Make him think they are just regrouping and the battle is lost but the war wont be.


In my opinion and in my observation of military history it is highly preferable, perhaps vital, for personal views to be made secondary to a soldiers duty to carry out orders. Soldiers who carry out their orders kill the enemy in scores. Soldiers who fail to carry out their orders kill their comrades.

In my opinion its the personal views of the soldier that make him, a soldier must follow orders but its how the orders are carried out.


In a democracy the people rule. A vote by the majority is binding- period. In a military chain of command the suggestions of the men are secondary to the decision of the commander. This is comparable to a monarchy in which the king has advisors.

Not really the comander is there to make a choice from the options given to him by his subordonates.





Although this courtesy has been afforded to men in certain historical situations it is not a requirement. The Marines didn't volunteer to be used as a diversionary attack on the enemy strongpoint at the Halls of Montezuma- they were given a job and they had to do it.

I am not familiar with this incident can you give a link?


The pilots based on Midway didn't have the option to stay on the ground and take cover- the Japanese were coming and the pilots were sent up to meet them- end of story. They had a duty to resist- to hurt the Japanese attack any way they could, and every man of them died fulfilling it.

That is correct but they made a decision to go up , they could well of not gone up there but they did. Was this because they where trained that way? That well could have been one of the factors BUT it was thier descion to go and fight.


The men who defended Wake Island couldn't over-ride the orders of the Navy. The Navy basically said "we aren't coming to get you- give em hell". There was no democracy- there was no voting on it- they were stuck out there to do what they could and they made a legendary stand. They couldn't even complain and get any help as you have talked about previously. Only one of the things they requested ever arrived- "Send us more Japs!".

I am not familiar with this event BUT from the information given i can surmise that the navy needed a rear gaurd and they where it, mabye not the best order but necessary. I will say now , as you seem not to understand, not every situation is the same and not every event can be changed or ignored.


So you heard me right- if your unit is given a task which you consider a suicide mission, you have to do it. If your batallion is surrounded and one company has to make a sacrificial charge to open a way out, you don't gotta like it, you just gotta do it. If I sound fanatical what can I say- what part of -Marine- don't you understand?

That may be but you have a duty to voice your concern and attempt the mission in the way you want. That situation there thye men know they must do this, its not an order its a must to save their friends and allies.
Also if i dont remember the army is held just in the same respect as marines because they put up with equally as much crap.


You are twisting my statement. If there is no goal then you are correct- to simply commit suicide is an unlawful order. If however your troop commander recieves orders to make a diversionary attack that is expected to cost 80-90% casualties then I hate to break it to you, but that's war and you have to do it.

If twisting the statement gets the mission done , its worth it.
Yeah thats war BUT how you do as i said is a diffrent matter.


Have you ever considered the era before firearms? Did you ever think about that poor dumb bastard at the front of the charge- that first man charging into a mass of blade-wielding enemy? Why the hell did that guy do it? Didn't he have enough common sense to run slower on the way across the field? Couldn't he have tricked the new guy into switching places with him? But hell, somebody had to do it. There was a war to be fought- there was something to accomplish that was so important that it was worth the deaths of hundreds or even thousands of men, so that poor guy stood up and took his place and did his job. A modern soldier is in the same position, and it sucks, but thats his duty. You follow your orders- somebody has to do it because there is an underlying reason for the orders being issued.

That soldier done what was needed to get his men home safely, being brave and takeing initiotive and leading from the front inspires confidence therefore makeing them think , hey i can do that to lets go!
Also before guns many conflicts where not worth the deaths of hundereds of people but they happened.

more to come...



posted on Dec, 19 2004 @ 09:44 AM
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Originally posted by The Vagabond

I was a rifleman in the USMC for just under 1 year- discharged last April after an injury had kept me at the SOI for several months. I have many friends who have been to Iraq including one who has been seriously wounded. I have other friends who are WWII veterans who have shared many stories with me.
I know very well that even a Marine gets scared, that even a Marine can be killed. It is our duty to put that aside and follow orders anyway. It is drilled into us from the split second that our drill instructor boards the bus to welcome us to the Marine Corps Recruit Depot. They have a million phrases for it. Instant Willing Obedience to Orders. Speed and Intensity. Orderly Proficient Military Manner.
It's acceptable to be a thinking individual. It is unacceptable to in any way let your personal views interfere with the accomplishment of the mission you are assigned.

It is impossible for your views not to interefere with the mission because your views make you.



I am not familiar with the story and would appreciate a link. I suspect that the situation to which you are referring might include the issuance of illegal orders. Illegal orders are the only orders- illegal in that they clearly violate either the Uniform Code of Military Justice or International Law, are the only orders which can be violated.

The captain accused the crew of acting mutinios etc. yet the investigation shows none of the sort.
That much in one mans hands is far too dangerous
www.royal-navy.mod.uk...


The way that you define a "wrong" order is the key issue here. If the order seems like a really bad idea you still have to follow it unless the officer is found incompitent and is removed in accordance with regulations. That's up to the XO. For the enlisted soldier, any order which is not patently illegal must be followed, even if you don't respect your commander.

Wrong: Something which is illegal and or not in the best intrest of the corps/service.
Its not if you follow it its how you do it.


It doesn't always seem right- a green Lt had authority over a salty platoon sergeant. 1Lts and Captains who have been around for 4-6 years are in charge of 1st Sgts who may be eligible for retirement already. Nevertheless, the officer is appropriately trained and comissioned to command. He is wise to listen to his NCOs- they are his eyes, ears and right hand, but when push comes to shove the officer is still in charge.

Yeah but if the officer makes a very wrong call AKA where you lose 2 sections (16 men) on a realitive low risk mission then the officer clearly didnt know what was going on.

You argue well,
call it even?



posted on Dec, 19 2004 @ 03:12 PM
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Forgive me- i dont know what I clicked but I have completely destroyed a very detailed response so I will be making a shorter reply here.
To the Squid: I understand what you are saying. My point is that a grey area may exist between reasonable and unreasonable orders which must be defined. To walk in a minefield is a clearly illegal order. Now what if you were ordered to make a sacrificial attack? Suppose your batallion were surrounded and your company was ordered to lead the breakout, expecting high or perhaps full casualties? It is a very difficult order to follow, but a lawful one, and it must be followed I believe. So my point is to press the idea that orders must be followed unless they are purely and clearly illegal in the sense that they violate regulations or international law.


Originally posted by devilwasp
Funny completely diffrent story over here , SCC ,BTEC,RN and RM books say democracy but one leader.

The books may call it democracy but that does not make it so. A government textbook will tell you that democracy is ruled by the vote of the majority.



The men WILL have more exsperience than you, they may have no direct say in what happens but you view will be taken intoconsideration, the same way the PM would take advice from his cabinet. They could be wrong but they could be right.

I agree that the men should be listened to. I also agree that they do not have a direct over-riding vote on the decision which is made.




Ofcourse you must not but you must be open to your men, its not just "wise" to do so its a military and civilian priority.

I agree, but would clarify a single point. In certain situations it is not practical to solicit advice and the step can be skipped. A unit under fire must react immediately as dictated by the commander. Every second spent in debate over tactics represents another chance for the enemy to put a round through you.
Since I take it that you are a navy man I will try to put it in naval terms. Sonar announces that a torpedo has been fired. The captain orders the evasive manuevers he considers appropriate. Another officer thinks the ship is sure to be hit and believes the captain should turn into the enemy and get a shot off before the ship is destroyed. Is there time to discuss this?



I never implied or said that , i simply said they would have complained and that complaining is a way to get things in the military or civilain life.
If you comander says that your platoon is of the lowest priority then it is you job to MAKE him give you that support. If you believe you will not achomplish the mission with out it, it is your duty to inform the comander of this and make your poit VERY clear. I am not insinuating that you should hold them hostage or anything to that degree , i am saying you should point out the fault , privately.

First of all, I object to the word complaining just because a Drill Instructor whooped my arse for 3 long months to make sure that I wasn't the complaining type- I would say "request support"; mere semantics though.
I agree that it is the duty of a commander to seek support by every possible means and to persue all alternative sollutions to find a way of succeeding. If it is not possible to recieve support or change the mind of the superior then the commander can not hold his superiors hostage- he must do everything in his power to accomplish the mission with the materials on hand.



That is correct but the whole military comand aka flag deck level is a democracy since there is no clear leader at the operational level, there are several admirals in the RN , for exsample, but no admiral of the fleet. That rank is saved for war, the admirals must vote on a decision or the sea lords will give an order. Remember the order to attack is filtered through levels and HOW they attack is generaly decided in a democracy.


During wartime the O-11 grade is assinged and a authority does rest with a single commander because this is an important part of decisive conduct. During the American Civil War General Grant conducted the war successfully with Generals McClellan and Meade kicking and screaming every step of the way.
Furthermore, the chain of command is not designed to be a filter or a check/balance on orders- only a system for delivering them to the appropriate levels where the finer points can be worked out and the orders can be followed.
Similiarities to democratic process at the highest levels of the military do not equate to an private soldier having freedom from the chain of command in the way that a civilian has freedom from the government.



Regardless of what the men may think is a nice statement to say, but one must take into account what the men think, if i said at a briefing "right lads comand just ordered us to attack objective B , its highly defended and there is a good chance we could take high or full losses."
Then of course the men will think "# off!"
If i say : "right lads we just got word from command and we have the honour of going in first against the enemy at objective B , its high risk and good chance we could take wounded. "
Which of the two sounds better

It was never my intent to suggest that a commander ignores his men. My point is that the commander must still be in control despite listening to his subordinates. With myself or other Marines I have known in charge, the briefing you presented sounds like this: "OK gents, we get to work today. We have been assigned objective B. The enemy is no sh*t gonna put up a fight for this one, so we need to be on our A-game today. We have arranged all available support, but may have to improvise adapt and overcome on certain problems. (vital details follow). Any questions, comments, dirty jokes? Good."
You dont want to sugar coat the truth too much because you have a duty to keep your men informed. You also have to be in control which means you can not create the doubly dangerous misconception that the mission is so dangerous that the men are being given a choice on it. Above all, you want to make it clear you are dealing with the situation in a compitent manner, and you want to solicit any last minute ideas from your men. Suppose you didn't get all the night vision equipment you requested and one of your sergeants is the clever type who is good at acquiring stuff, you know?



Which duke of marlbourgh? there are many. If you mean the first one then yes i agree,

His name escapes me. He fought in Bavaria in the early 18th century and defeated Tallard at Blenheim.



Since when in democracy does eveyone yeild to everyone elses desires. The ability to balance control and liberty in the forces is a good one and is a delecate balance.

The definition of democracy is that the vote of the majority is law. In the military this is not the case. One must be able to manage the morale of the men by compitent leadership and perparation in order to keep the loyalty of the men while making strong demands which the men might prefer were not made.



Ofcourse the individual will of a soldier is subordinate to the comanders BUT the will of that soldier will ethier help or damage the comanders orders, even if the soldier follows the order, its the way he follows it.

I understand that the soldier has certain latitude in the conduct of his orders but it is important that he be disciplined so that his individual thinking will be directed towards the best way to carry out his orders, not to questioning the orders themselves.
The individual thinking of the soldier can make the conduct of orders more successful if the soldier directs it appropriately. If the soldier refuses to direct his thoughts along the lines dictated by his orders though it will only lead to disorder.



They fight as one but are a group of induviduals , the individuals make the group , not the group makes the individuals.

As I say, the individuals must discipline themselves to that their thinking compliments the group. The individuals DO make up the group, but they can also unmake the group if they do not act according to their position in the group. A soldier must understand himself to be an integral part of the unit even though he is an individual, and he must make his decisions within the scope of the higher decisions which govern the group.



The soldier must do what he thinks will get the mission done, if that means your comrades die ,then as you say tough.

For the private soldier this is a very dangerous mistake. The private soldier is not to judge what will best accomplish the mission. He is only to judge the best way of filling his assigned role within the orders he recieves.
A troop commander might order 1st and 2nd squads to remain in their positions and give supressing fire while 3rd squad moves to the enemy's flank.
The squad leader might dictate that fireteam rushes will be used to accomplish this movement.
Can the private soldier in that squad ignore the orders from above and remain in position because he thinks he can do a better job from there?




Ah you are thinking like the flag deck people that every soldier or marine thinks the same. This situation is entirely hypothetical with no actual way of the second happening in real life, the average soldier will become scared and frightned and in a retreat he will think the battle is lost, the job of a leader is to fill that man back up with courage. Make him think they are just regrouping and the battle is lost but the war wont be.


The example of Chosin Resevoir does include that the leader must act in a way that is conducive to discipline and order. Chesty Puller told his men at Chosin "They've got us surrounded, they'll never get away this time."
That being said the private soldier must continue to function in the face of fear, even though he certainly is subject to it.
Marine basic training has historically been torturous even to the point of hazing because they are screening for a class of individuals with the strong character necessary to function under the most extreme stress.
A good soldier knows that his best hope for survival and victory is to keep doing his job even though he may be cold, tired, huntry, and dang near certainly doomed. In the days of conscript armies, when individual discipline was lacking, commanders would often position their armies in such places where the men could only save themselves by winning the battle. Hannibal backed his men up against a river at Cannae to both protect his flanks and to ensure that his center must not retreat. Sun Tsu advised that battle should be sought on what he called "fatal terrain".
In modern times it is not necessary to place men beyond hope of retreat because the interests of the private soldier are more closely linked to the interests of the state and therefore the soldier has good cause to be individually disciplined and to overcome fear by choice.



Not really the comander is there to make a choice from the options given to him by his subordonates.

I believe this statement is the product of naval experience. Naval warfare concerns the operation of complex machines and systems so your statement is more applicable there. To a grunt like myself such a statement would be nonsense.
In land forces, the commander is the best trained and educated in relation to the task at hand. He may have salty NCOs upon whom he should call for advice, but on land the commander is ultimately best qualified to formulate the decision.
This issue really makes it seem that you and I may be arguing a semantical point more than anything else by each focusing on a different issue with which the other has little disagreement. I certainly agree that the men have considerable input in the decision making process, especially in naval warfare. I stress the point, and believe you will at least partially agree with me, that discipline and obedience to the commanders decision are a necessary response from the men, even if the commander has for some reason chosen a course of action which they were against. The only exception is where the commander has ordered the violation of regulations or law. In those cases men are legally obligated to disobey.






Although this courtesy has been afforded to men in certain historical situations it is not a requirement. The Marines didn't volunteer to be used as a diversionary attack on the enemy strongpoint at the Halls of Montezuma- they were given a job and they had to do it.

I am not familiar with this incident can you give a link?

I dont have a link on hand immediately although I believe you could find it in by searching www.wikipedia.com for Halls of Montezuma. During the Mexican American war the Marines were assigned a heavily defended objective on high ground while the Army under General Scott was to reap the glory of taking Mexico City.
The Marines through themselves at the objective ferociously, took the objective, and arrived in Mexico City ahead of General Scott. Most marine officers who participated in the battle were wounded and subordinate officers and NCOs were forced to assume positions of responsibilty. Therefore the "bloodstripe" worn by key leaders was granted to all Marine officers and NCOs afterward.





The pilots based on Midway didn't have the option to stay on the ground and take cover- the Japanese were coming and the pilots were sent up to meet them- end of story. They had a duty to resist- to hurt the Japanese attack any way they could, and every man of them died fulfilling it.

That is correct but they made a decision to go up , they could well of not gone up there but they did. Was this because they where trained that way? That well could have been one of the factors BUT it was thier descion to go and fight.

They decided only to do their duty. To refuse their duty to resist the Japanese attack would have been mutiny. This in no way detracts from the valor of those men, because I see your point that mutiny was within their power. The difference which is made by this point is that Midway then sets a prescedent for obedience to orders and commitment to the mission even when the odds are strongly against you.



I am not familiar with this event BUT from the information given i can surmise that the navy needed a rear gaurd and they where it, mabye not the best order but necessary.

This is my point precisely (although Wake Island was not so much a rear guard action as an unfortunate event of men being cut off and a rescue attempt being considered impractical). When the decision is made there is no appealing it by democratic means- you just have to play the cards you've been dealt.



I will say now , as you seem not to understand, not every situation is the same and not every event can be changed or ignored.

The statement that I do not understand the concept of variation from event to event is mildly insulting. I simply do not believe that there is any circumstance which supercedes the duty of a soldier to follow lawful orders. There is only one thing you need to know when you are debating the value of following your orders in the Marines. You need to know what USMC really stands for- "yoU Signed the Mother-freakin Contract.



That may be but you have a duty to voice your concern and attempt the mission in the way you want. That situation there thye men know they must do this, its not an order its a must to save their friends and allies.

By that logic a soldier can come and go as he pleases if he doesn't feel the mission is vital to saving friends and allies. You DO have a duty to voice concerns and execute the mission in the best possible way, but only within the scope of your orders, which unless you can prevail upon the good sense of your commander, are absolute.



If twisting the statement gets the mission done , its worth it.

Now you're starting to think in my terms =). LOL



That soldier done what was needed to get his men home safely, being brave and takeing initiotive and leading from the front inspires confidence therefore makeing them think , hey i can do that to lets go!
Also before guns many conflicts where not worth the deaths of hundereds of people but they happened.

more to come...


We are pretty close to agreement here but I must continue to stress that good order and discipline are not optional. That soldier in the front of the charge was subject to circumstances beyond his control. He conducted himself valliantly to be sure, but he could not have saved himself by crying or trying to run away. Orders are given for a reason.



posted on Dec, 19 2004 @ 04:17 PM
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vagabound , you win. i am currently too busy to continue.
Good arguement.



posted on Dec, 19 2004 @ 10:55 PM
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I would encourage you to see this as an exchange of ideas which prompted consideration of our duties (well, my former duty) as servicemen. I dont see how I could have won if it was not my intent to beat you at anything.
I'm hoping that you and I will have other discussions in the future when time permits for you.



posted on Dec, 20 2004 @ 07:42 AM
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Originally posted by The Vagabond
To the Squid: I understand what you are saying. My point is that a grey area may exist between reasonable and unreasonable orders which must be defined. To walk in a minefield is a clearly illegal order. Now what if you were ordered to make a sacrificial attack? Suppose your batallion were surrounded and your company was ordered to lead the breakout, expecting high or perhaps full casualties? It is a very difficult order to follow, but a lawful one, and it must be followed I believe. So my point is to press the idea that orders must be followed unless they are purely and clearly illegal in the sense that they violate regulations or international law.


The situation you have described is a legal order, But; the soldier has the right to say no, but in that situation, to say no to that order is practically suicide anyway... For the soldier, he will almost definitly realise that that order given by the commander is almost certainly a Do or Die order, Because, lets face it, If your surrounded by enemy... You're not gunna make it if you sit on your ass in the same spot.

But in the battlefield, fear and terror can and will effect a soldier, and a commander can not "order" a soldier around when he is in this panicy and demorilised state, He can only ask and encourage, and reason with them.
Some of the soldiers who were sat behind beach obstacles on Omaha Beach refused to move forward, and they were scared to hell. The CO's couldn't order them forward, But instead they explained things to the soldiers about their situation, This encouraged them to go forward.

So therefore you must see that soldiers can get demorilised, at this point democracy is the key, usually a soldier will obay orders unless they are illegal, but emotional barriers can stop them from obaying.

Soldiers are humans too, Just because they put on the gear, are trained to obay and act tough... Doesn't mean they don't have emotions and thoughts about the situation they are in. If they think something is definitly suicide they are most definitly going to say no.

Nervous Breakdowns can also occur in the line of duty, they arn't going to do any fighting in this state, so orders are ineffective.

Orders can only be given and obayed if soldiers are fighting fit in the line of duty, both physically and phycologically. If a man has had his leg blown off your not going to order him to get back up and fight are you? Nor should you ask a soldier who thinks the mission is FUBAR and is scared for his life and is cowering in a corner or hole.

Edit: Typo's

[edit on 20-12-2004 by The_Squid]



posted on Dec, 21 2004 @ 03:30 AM
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Originally posted by The_Squid
The situation you have described is a legal order, But; the soldier has the right to say no, but in that situation, to say no to that order is practically suicide anyway... For the soldier, he will almost definitly realise that that order given by the commander is almost certainly a Do or Die order, Because, lets face it, If your surrounded by enemy... You're not gunna make it if you sit on your ass in the same spot.


I'm afraid that doesn't end my disagreement with you. You are contending that a soldier can refuse a lawful order if it doesn't suit him, and that the only reason he should follow the order i described is because he's dead either way.
The way I see it, a soldier has to follow lawful orders- period. Suppose it wasn't do or die- suppose a soldier is part of a patrol sent into an area where almost every patrol has encountered booby traps, yet it is important to obtain information about enemy presence in that area. The soldier has to go, even if he has a strong chance of being hurt or killed for a non "do or die" mission.
1. Most modern soldiers are volunteers. Like my DI always said; USMC= U Signed the Muthafreakin Contract.
2. The soldier is protecting the nation in which he enjoys the benefits of citizenship- he has recieved and expects to recieve something for which he is serving.
3. A soldier accepts his peacetime pay to be prepared for war. This obligates him to be prepared to participate in war when it comes. One who will not follow orders in war should refuse all orders and all pay during peacetime until his country simply gives up and discharges him, with or without punishment. If you dont like that, just renounce your citizenship if ever called to serve.



But in the battlefield, fear and terror can and will effect a soldier, and a commander can not "order" a soldier around when he is in this panicy and demorilised state,

You need more Marines in your life. Everything a person does is a choice. You may not think so or want to think so, but your mouth wont say and your hands wont do anything that you dont tell them to say or do. You can always choose to be disciplined, especially if you are properly conditioned to dealing with stress.
I've never been shot at, but I am intimately familiar with every almost every form of physical and psychological distress imaginable, including fear of imminent death. A person can definately become less certain, less decisive, and less effective under these circumstances, but a person also has absolute conscious control over his actions.
As long as a soldier can function he has to follow orders, and I can tell you from experience that a human being can function under incredible conditions.



He can only ask and encourage, and reason with them.
Some of the soldiers who were sat behind beach obstacles on Omaha Beach refused to move forward, and they were scared to hell. The CO's couldn't order them forward, But instead they explained things to the soldiers about their situation, This encouraged them to go forward.

Yes, discipline breaks down under extreme stress at times. This does not mean the men had a right to refuse to advance. I am not sure which island this occurred on, however in the Pacific Theater the Marines provided a far better example. When Marines had taken cover and begun digging in on the beach their commander realized that they were going to get both themselves and the second wave killed. The commander stood up and exposed himself under fire and gave the order "get up and get moving, follow me". No explanation, no BS- just get off your arse Marine, this is what we're about. Discipline is the difference.



So therefore you must see that soldiers can get demorilised, at this point democracy is the key, usually a soldier will obay orders unless they are illegal, but emotional barriers can stop them from obaying.


I believe that demanding the preconditioned response which has been trained into a warrior is far easier than convincing him to do his job. Training and discipline gets the job done best, and this is why Marines make conditioned responses or "stimulous and response" type training such a major tool at all levels. It is second nature to a marine to give certain reactions to certain commands. You don't hit the deck or try to hide when you hit an ambush- you sound off "Contact (direction)!" and come online with your unit to assault through the objective. Disciplined responses can be drilled into a fighting man, and they should be. A soldier who freezes up represents a failure to prepare in training, not a failure of the chain of command system.



Soldiers are humans too, Just because they put on the gear, are trained to obay and act tough... Doesn't mean they don't have emotions and thoughts about the situation they are in. If they think something is definitly suicide they are most definitly going to say no.

Training can create the ability to work through thoughts and emotions. A soldier has a duty and is not entitled to make his personal safety the first priority. A disciplined soldier will do his duty.



Nervous Breakdowns can also occur in the line of duty, they arn't going to do any fighting in this state, so orders are ineffective.

Nervous breakdowns are the product of a predisposition and a lack of conditioning to stress. Again this emphasizes the need for training and discipline, not pep-talks and democracy. We don't have time to give every grunt a shoulder rub and a cup of tea before he has to get up and fight. If these breakdowns are really such a problem then give the men coc aine, otherwise just train them properly.



Orders can only be given and obayed if soldiers are fighting fit in the line of duty, both physically and phycologically. If a man has had his leg blown off your not going to order him to get back up and fight are you? Nor should you ask a soldier who thinks the mission is FUBAR and is scared for his life and is cowering in a corner or hole.
Edit: Typo's
[edit on 20-12-2004 by The_Squid]

We'll you're right about one thing- you shouldn't ask a man with one leg to get back up. If the situation is bad enough that you can't immediately evacuate the wounded you should tourniqet his leg, position him with the wound elevated, preferably in a modified prone position, and give him back his rifle so that he can defend himself if things get that bad.

As for the guy cowering in the corner because he thinks the mission is FUBAR- I'd seriously consider shooting him if nobody was watching, because he is a danger to the unit. Of course I'd also have to shoot the people who allowed a soldier to make it into combat without undergoing such training as would demonstrate his inability to adapt to stress.
This, by the way, is a big part of why I think they should let DIs hit their recruits.



posted on Dec, 21 2004 @ 06:53 AM
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Most of the time soldiers will obay orders, but there are times where the shooting can get to a man, especially after killing somebody and knowing you definitly did it, that can really get to a man.

Have you never heard of Omaha beach? Yet you supposedly know alot about millitary tactics, methods and history? Omaha beach was one of the most famous American screw ups that happened in WWII.

It wasn't on an island, It occured in Normany on June the 6th 1944, D-Day.

Anyway, That is extreamly unfair that you would shoot a man for thinking the mission or situation is FUBAR, every soldier gets scared at some point, especially when you bottle up your feelings. All you need to do is encourage him to fight again and give him some encouragement and you've got a fighting man again, not a dead man. DI shouldn't be allowed to hit their recruits... What type of encouragement is that? Also it could lead to a punch-up, especially if the recruit hit has friends with him.



posted on Dec, 21 2004 @ 02:49 PM
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Originally posted by The Vagabond
I would encourage you to see this as an exchange of ideas which prompted consideration of our duties (well, my former duty) as servicemen. I dont see how I could have won if it was not my intent to beat you at anything.
I'm hoping that you and I will have other discussions in the future when time permits for you.

Well may i suggest we continue this discussion after the new year?



posted on Dec, 21 2004 @ 02:51 PM
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This first paragraph is actually the last thing I am writing, but I am putting it up top because I want you to see it and consider my arguements in this light. Your point is basically that a man should be convinced of the need to follow his orders. I say this is not practical- that obedience has to be instant and instilled by training and discipline.
It could be argued that I want the same thing as you, only at a different time. I believe that training should condition a soldier to know that the surest way to reduce the stress and danger he is in is by following orders. This way, he encourages himself quickly without demanding the attention of his commander every time there is a job to do. If training leads a soldier to realize why he must follow his orders, then he will be self disciplined and will function under stress in just the way you are promoting, except that he will accomplish it by himself because the way that I am promoting has already helped him in training to understand the reason he must obey.





Have you never heard of Omaha beach? Yet you supposedly know alot about millitary tactics, methods and history? Omaha beach was one of the most famous American screw ups that happened in WWII.


I -supposedly- know a lot about the military?? In the militant world, Ted Kazinksy (spelling?) may be the only one who is a bigger nerd than I am.

Omaha was a disaster of logistics caused by failure to consider the effectiveness of equipment under harsh weather conditions, especially at Dog Sector, which you have probably seen in Saving Private Ryan.
Every company but one assigned to Dog Sector was mis-landed, and all but 2 of roughly 30 amphibious tanks assigned to that beach were sunk by strong currents.
The men eventually moved up the cliffs rather than through the exits, not because somebody gave them a big disney channel peptalk, but because 1. They were screwed either way once the tide came in, so they had no reason not to try. 2. American destroyers forced their way into the shoals and began hammering German positions to support the landed troops.



It wasn't on an island, It occured in Normany on June the 6th 1944, D-Day.

You're going to have to clarify what you mean. I never indicated that D-day occurred on an island. I have used Wake island and Midway as examples though. By the way, if you'd like to sound really smart, specify the towns, because Normandy is a relatively large area. American forces ended up at Vierville, Saint-Laurent, and Colleville. British units landed further East. I don't remember off the top of my head where the Canadian forces were landed, although it may have been with the British. (Not even I know -everything-).



Anyway, That is extreamly unfair that you would shoot a man for thinking the mission or situation is FUBAR, every soldier gets scared at some point, especially when you bottle up your feelings.

I wouldn't shoot a man for thinking the mission is FUBAR. I'd shoot him if he was endangering the unit by unstable behavior such as refusing to fight. He slows the unit down if we try to keep him. If we try too hard to get him to fight he may turn on the unit. IF there is time to give him a 30 second pep talk then very well, but if we're under such fire that men are getting shell-shocked then I dont have time to play games- I'm gonna kick him in the butt and say come on, and if he doesn't come on i'll either leave him or shoot him.
By the way, if like old military slang you can also use SNAFU and BOHICA. Situation Normal, All Fouled Up. and Bend Over, Here It Comes Again. BOHICA is not so well known say it may give people the impression that you know a bit more about meaningless jargon.



All you need to do is encourage him to fight again and give him some encouragement and you've got a fighting man again, not a dead man. DI shouldn't be allowed to hit their recruits... What type of encouragement is that? Also it could lead to a punch-up, especially if the recruit hit has friends with him.

I think that striking recruits is an important part of creating a high stress level which is necessary to condition men for combat. I also believe that it best enables the DI to teach a recruit that following orders makes him safer. Recruits ganging up on DIs will only happen in the reign of queen dick. DIs hit recruits. Recuits fight back. DIs always win. Most of the platoon would side with the DI if the DI couldn't do it on his own. Besides- the kind of unstable idiot who attacks his DI for harsh training is the exact same idiot who would frag turn on his unit for trying to take him into harms way. We NEED to screen these morons out of the service by bringing recruits to that breaking point in boot.
I've been hit by drill instructors a little bit and it made me do a better job in the future. I've known Marines who were hit by their drill instructors a lot, and they were always the best at almost everything. Drill Instructors who use violence produce the best Marines- no doubt in my mind.
If carried to the extreme, these people end up a little sick in the head. There are few things as scarry as an abused child who grows up on rough streets then joins the Marine Corps- I know 2 and I'd feel better about the human race if I had never met them. Drill Instructors alone don't create those people though. A little tough love from your DIs for 3 little months just provides a crash course in discipline, nothing more.



posted on Dec, 21 2004 @ 03:05 PM
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I dont condone the use of violence on recruits , i think if you want to punish them then do it the fun way.
The DI's wake you up at 4:30 AM then make you do a beach attack and run back to camp all before breakfast, then after breakfast......... lol theres probably worse but thats what happened to my mate at lymspton on the cadet comand thingy.



posted on Dec, 21 2004 @ 04:28 PM
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Late to the topic - I read the first 4 pages before the conversation shifted to...other things.

A few points:

1. Iranian First Strike

Tactically, this is a sound move, for the reasons you state. Strategically, I'm not so sure. The best thing the Iranians have going for them is restricted engagement rules for the US. If they attack first, unprovoked, they would lose most international sympathy. Even the EU and China would have a hard time justifying foot-dragging or clandestine support. Even with a sympathetic media, the all-important "Arab street" would probably find US retaliation understandable. The US would feel free to use its weapons for maximum effectiveness.

Then there is the challenge of actually pulling of a first-strike without US intel/recon finding out first. But we'll put that aside for now.

2. Cruise Missiles

I'm not sure they are as effective as you think they are - they simply aren't very cost-effective. I don't know the figures, but let's say they have 1000 cruise missiles and 200 assorted ballistic missiles. Let's say they launch 50% of their inventory in the opening day. We'll be generous and say they have a CEP of 5 meters for the cruise missiles and 50 meters for the ballistic missiles. The ballistic missiles will be able to do serious damage to infrastructure and fixed targets, but I think cruise missiles will not have the effect you describe.

Assuming they can assemble such a large missile force without detection, such a large missile launch will be detectable by radar. Iran does have some stealthed cruise missile systems, but they constitute only a small part of the missile force. Look-down radar systems including JSTAR and AWACS have no problem picking out terrain-hugging missiles. Ballistic missles, of course, are trackable by satellite. The alarm goes out. Troops evacuate bases, assets are dispersed.

Ballistic missiles arrive in 10-20 minutes, destroying railroads, supply depots, ships in harbor. The token PAC-3 defence systems can protect a few assets, but they are essentially irrelevent. Casualties are heavy. There simply hasn't been enough time to get out of the way.

Cruise missiles take 30-90 minutes, depending on the target. Because there has been enough time, especially for the rear-echelon units, unit cohesion is maintained. Of the units targeted by Iranian missiles, they lose 50% of their supplies, 20% of their equipment and 5-10% of their personnel. Communications and command are damaged but intact.

That's it - the Iranians have 100 ballistic missiles left, for deterrence and to hit targets of opportunity, and 500 cruise missiles, essentially 500 guided bombs. That's not much to prosecute a war with.

3. US logistics speed.

The US has contingency plans - I think the US could have a MEP and a airborne division there within a week, by airlift alone. Jordan would cooperate, and the US could be docking supplies in Israel and transporting them overland to Iraq. Carrier groups would steam into replace loss of Air Force capability.

US pre-positioned ships in Diego Garcia, as well as naval and seaborne assets from Japan, South Korea, and Singapore could be in theater in two weeks/month. Australian forces, which have high compatability with US forces, could send supplies quickly.

Yes, the US needs to keep a presence in Japan and RoK, but our presence is largely symbolic already always - the 45,000+ troops in RoK are not there to provide the backbone of the Korean defence, but to complement it. I think the US could draw down 30-50% of the troops there, for 3-6 months, without serious security consequences.

4. Access to the Persian Gulf.

The Iranians can deny access for two weeks to US forces. By then, carriers operating outside the effective range of anti-ship weapons will have ground down Iranian coastal missile batteries, and destroyed Iranian ports. The Iranians will be simply uncapable of sustained naval operations, even harassment.

As for the motorboat-with-RPGs scenario, a liberal rule-of-engagement policy can be used. 50-cals on the deck, snipers, and maybe some Special Ops attack helicopters, with miniguns and rockets.

5. SAMs

SAMs are overrated. In the Six-day war, the Arabs launched thousands of SA-2, SA-6, and SA-7 at Israeli fighters, which had no ECM, and no missiles. The Israeli fighters engaged SAM sites with cannon! The SAM kill ratio was 1:1000, or one plane downed for every 1000 SAMs launched.

Obviously, SAMs have improved. But the lesson remains. Besides, US airplanes now almost exclusively rely on GPS-guided weapons launched from planes flying at 30,000 feet, putting most SAMs at a severe energy disadvantage. Wild Weasel patrols would encourage Iranian SAMs to stay quiet.

6. Iranian Airforce

Like all fixed assets, it is vulerable to precison attack. Cruise missiles, and GDAMS from B-2, B-1 bombers would severly reduce their effectiveness.

The Iranian Airforce may be able to do serious damage in the first week, but their offensive tempo cannot be maintained - they don't have the C3I to identify and destroy numerous targets simultaneously. Fortunately for them, the US Army has minimal SAM capabilities, so they could simply fly around 2000 feet, looking for targets.

But once the US starts hitting their airfields, their sortie rate plummets. US carriers begin to assert dominance, and by the end of the second week, it's back to full spectrum dominance by US forces.

My scenario would roughly follow yours, but the timeline would be accelerated:

Day 1-2: Massive surprise attack by Iranian missile forces, followed by a land invasion. US forces are at 80% strength, unit cohesion is maintained, but they need a day to reorganize.

Day 3-10: A spirited defence follows, ad hoc at first, but will increasing strength. The decentralized nature of US forces, and the individual initative of the mid-level officer corps means that the US forces self-organize into effective combat units, with organic artillery and recon support. The Iranian offence slows. US forces are badly in need of supplies.

Continued attack of major airfields by Iranian missile forces make repair impossible. The Army Corps of Engineers clears and prepares stretches of highway for rough landings by C-17s. Supplies and reinforcements begin to flow.

Terrorist activity in Iraq increases dramatically, but indiginous security forces, supplemented by local militias and vigilante groups, manage to keep order in most areas. (This, of course, depends on Iraqi support for the US occupation. Recently polls show that 80% of Iraqis support the interim-government, and want elections)

Day 10-15: The Iranian offensive is stopped outside Baghdad. As Iranian forces advance deeper into the range of carrier aircraft, they face more frequent attacks. Their supply lines are regularly cut by precision air strikes, and even by Spec Op units behind their lines. It just becomes too much.

Day 15+: Armored thrusts by US forces quickly destroy the Iranian lines, and Iranian troops, short on supplies, information, and leadership, are bypassed or surrounded. Mass surrenders begin.

[edit on 21-12-2004 by nondescript]



posted on Dec, 21 2004 @ 05:00 PM
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'The Vagabond' Your saying that D.I's should be allowed to hit recruits? Under what circumstances do you think they should be hit? and Where physically? I mean if a D.I punched me in the face I would most definitly hit back... And since most recruits join up with a group of friends, I really doubt those friends would side with the D.I against their friends in a fight, I also doubt the rest of the Platoon would join on the D.I's side either, more than likely watch.

I also don't see how you can say for certain the D.I can take on a recruit and definitly win. There are all kinds of factors that come into who would win.

Edit: Typo's

[edit on 21-12-2004 by The_Squid]



posted on Dec, 21 2004 @ 06:04 PM
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Originally posted by devilwasp
I dont condone the use of violence on recruits , i think if you want to punish them then do it the fun way.
The DI's wake you up at 4:30 AM then make you do a beach attack and run back to camp all before breakfast, then after breakfast......... lol theres probably worse but thats what happened to my mate at lymspton on the cadet comand thingy.


Again I guess we have to agree to disagree. I will admit that IT (incentive training) was extremely effective, but it's even more effective when the DI knocks your in the dirt face first every time you stop excercising.
Food and sleep deprivation are also powerful tools. My platoon barely ate for 4 days once after we pissed off the senior. We kept getting rushed in and out of the chow hall and getting water ITd (thats when you chug quarts of water between excercize sessions until you vomit up your last meal)- they especially use it for correcting fatbodies who wont seem to lose weight, but from time to time everyone gets it. Then there's firewatch- it hacks 2 hours sleep out of your desperately needed 7 per night. One poor jerk in my platoon pulled some stupid stunt like 4 days out of recieving and ended up pulling 2 hours firewatch every single night he was on the depot, including during the crucible- which meant less than an hour of sleep for him then.


EDIT: To respond to Squid.
I believe that the DI should be able to strike a recruit to the extent that it can create pain and anger to increase the stress to which a recruit is being acclimated.
I personally have had fingers jabbed against my neck, been kicked in the hamstrings hard enough that it took me off my feet, have been shoved into the dirt by the back of the head while in pushup position, have been shoved in the chest with one arm, etc. If I didn't pick my feet up high enough while marching the DI would grab my leg behind the knee and pull it up as far as possible, to the point that i almost fell flat on my back. All of this made me extremely angry at the time. In retrospect I approve of it all.

The general guideline I would encourage if I were making policy is that striking is designed to increase stress, not inflict physical damage. Therefore I would say that closed fists are off limits, that shoving-type strikes are most appropriate, and that very specific types of kicks or other techniques which are intended to move, unbalance, or destabilize a recruit are also appropriate as this is an extremely stressful but not incredibly painful or permanently damaging method of striking.
Placement of strikes is generally acceptable anywhere outside of the face or groin area, so long as the strike does not possess the ability to cause permanent damage to the targeted body part. (DI tripping me from the knee is OK- DI kicking me in the knee is needlessly dangerous.) "Strikes" in the throat area are to be limited to a low pressure pointing of the finger, much as would be done to an individuals chest while berrating him- this is an EXTREMELY stress-inducing tactic which will likely expose individuals who are prone to tempermental outbursts which could be dangerous in combat.

In certain cases, especially outside of bootcamp, I believe that outright fighting is justified as well. I have heard of sergeants keeping boxing gloves around for resolving problems with or between the men, and i can imagine that it works pretty well. In a culture like the Marine Corps, kicking somebody's butt is definately a problem solving technique for leaders who are being questioned by subordinates.

[edit on 21-12-2004 by The Vagabond]




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