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Quick Facts Concerning the Military (RE Response to Covid-19 a.k.a. Coronavirus a.k.a. WuFlu)

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posted on Mar, 18 2020 @ 09:07 AM
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Good morning, ATS!

I have (obviously) been following the news, and was tempted to post yet another thread about the virus that emphasized my own area of expertise, Emergency and Disaster Response. I have instead decided that it is time to insert some facts into the conversation regarding the military and its responsibilities, capabilities and make-up as it corresponds to disaster response. I am a firm believer in having open and honest conversations, and although I don't really trust anyone whole-cloth, I do know when I am being lied to- so let's open up a question and answer session with the emphasis on dispelling some commonly held myths and misconceptions!

Myth #1- The military has secret facilities held in reserve to deal with instances of outbreak, etc.
Ummmm... not so much. Unlike what the movies have shown you, the CDC is not an organization that has thousands of "go" teams ready to respond to epidemics, etc., at the drop of a hat. It is an organization that has emphasized executive organization in order to coordinate assets to respond to outbreaks, as well as to coordinate pre-disaster planning and research. It is a paper-pushing organization with EXCELLENT people and labs under their administrative control.
Similarly, the active military does NOT have gobs of resources just stockpiled and awaiting mobilization. Sure, we can activate USN Comfort and Mercy,

The Pentagon is starting the process of activating Navy hospital ships USNS Mercy (T-AH-19) and USNS Comfort (T-AH-20) as part of the Defense Department’s domestic response to the spreading COVID-19 virus, USNI News has learned.
But this is not for treating the sick, it is for freeing up hospital space (transferring trauma patients) for Covid-19 related issues. There is no secret space shuttle for that meteor hurtling towards earth, and there are no super scientists waiting for their moment to shine, just humans who will work harder to deal with challenges in the best way they know how, focusing as directed.

Myth # 2- The military will be sent into the streets, and will enforce martial law
Okay... this is partially true. First, we are talking about the National Guard, not the Reserves, and definitely not Active Duty military. What you will see are components of the National Guard activating to provide services and equipment (as needed) to the states in which they belong. Medical personnel should be a last resort, as guess what? These people are medical personnel in the real world, and activating them would drain resources from other sources! As for activating MPs or Infantry to provide crowd control, etc.? These are your friends and neighbors, and they don't want to arrest you (where will they put you?), nor do they want to shoot you. They would only act to support police and Sheriff resources, and would most likely be unarmed, or at least not under arms. (BTW, this would be last resort. Seriously.)

Myth #3- The military is hiding/hoarding resources
Partially true again! Do you want single ply toilet paper? I'd prefer a bidet, but sure, we got that! Want some dehydrated potatoes? I'm warning you, M.R.E.s will eliminate the need for toilet paper. Heck, we don't even have nice places for our own isolated people to stay. But we are able to tell our people what to do, no matter what (it's in the contract), an aside from that we are just as limited as you are!

There are plenty of other myths out there, but I thought these would be a great place to start. Feel free to chime in, and remember to wash your hands!


Side note- does anyone else feel like the term "social distancing" is a new way to end a relationship? Face it, if you can't be in quarantine with someone, you probably shouldn't be touching their mouth hole with yours.
edit on 18/3/2020 by ThouArtGod because: edit on 18/3/2020 by ThouArtGod because: edit to change "mouth holes" to "mouth hole". I'm not sure what species has "mouth holes", plural, but I can assure you that you should avoid them.

edit on 18/3/2020 by ThouArtGod because: (no reason given)




posted on Mar, 18 2020 @ 09:19 AM
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a reply to: ThouArtGod


What are the odds that military posts will be locked down? The company I work for has 10,000+ contract workers at numerous locations around the world. Just curious on the odds of military closing their doors?



posted on Mar, 18 2020 @ 09:28 AM
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a reply to: jsjAmeicanMo

I am NOT a spokesman for the Army... But I will say that if they start saying that we should lock down portions of society, the military is technically the easiest group to lock down. At this point? I'd say 50/50



posted on Mar, 18 2020 @ 09:31 AM
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a reply to: jsjAmeicanMo

moody AFB is partially shut down till the 30th, if they see a spike in cases I expect a full shut down if not will stay as is till the virus evens out I think.

Currently stationed at Moody as a Full time reservist 1 drill weekend has already been moved, and all non-essential civil service are at home right now.

ETA: to answer your question in full if the virus gets into the base and starts spreading then yes they will be locked down completely.
edit on 18-3-2020 by Irishhaf because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 18 2020 @ 09:38 AM
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a reply to: Irishhaf

AGR? Are you folks telecommuting yet?



posted on Mar, 18 2020 @ 09:46 AM
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a reply to: jsjAmeicanMo

Several bases are already partially limiting access, even to retirees and others that are supposed to have full access. It's not a lockdown yet, but they're getting there.



posted on Mar, 18 2020 @ 09:50 AM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

I do know that the commissary is one of the few places I've been to that hasn't been completely bonkers here in MD. I suspect that as access is restricted, it will get a bit easier.

Ironically, one of my pitches to Soldiers for re-enlistment has always been "I'd rather be at the head of the line handing out supplies, than in the line waiting for them."



posted on Mar, 18 2020 @ 09:58 AM
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a reply to: ThouArtGod

ART, and I cant telecommute our Group commander declared the entire sq non-mission essential so we were sent home on Admin leave.

I am an airplane mechanic integrated with active duty.

the day we were sent home I stopped at the Commissary and the TP aisle was nearly cleaned out, ill probably swing by again in the next couple days and see how we are doing.

ETA: just got notified we are moving from minimum essential to risk based operations in the coming weeks, which should be interesting as they want us to keep social distancing and groups of 10 or less... I work in Phase.
edit on 18-3-2020 by Irishhaf because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 18 2020 @ 10:01 AM
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a reply to: Irishhaf
That's good. My unit will not let us do so, as we are considered "essential".



posted on Mar, 18 2020 @ 10:11 AM
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a reply to: ThouArtGod

I haven't followed at a lot of bases, but I've seen the bitching by retirees at a couple because the commissary, BX, and others were put on AD, Reserves, and Guard only. Even the golf course.



posted on Mar, 18 2020 @ 10:44 AM
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I know the navy has a nice hospital ship that is now heading to ny city...



posted on Mar, 18 2020 @ 11:00 AM
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a reply to: ThouArtGod

Thank you!

Hopefully everyone will read your post and relax a bit. Having been in the Army myself I always laugh at people's Hollywood-esque perception of the military.

"...shouldn't be touching their mouth hole with yours."
This comment alone will be enough to help me laugh right thru whatever the COVID crisis may bring! That is still the best medicine, right? Laughter?
Thanks again.



posted on Mar, 18 2020 @ 04:03 PM
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a reply to: ChayOphan

I’m glad I can make you laugh, even if through facts alone


One thing that perturbed my buddies and I are military/firearm depictions in popular culture.

Example- how many times in Supernatural can you chamber a round in your pistol? Like, every time you point it? And how are you holding someone at gunpoint, while still needing to rack the slide to “prove you’re serious”. Le sigh.



posted on Mar, 18 2020 @ 04:11 PM
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a reply to: dawnstar

I am curious, Dawn- where are NYers escaping to? Upstate? Penn?

Also, holy crap, I didn’t realize you were still on this site! I’ve known you longer than I’ve known my wife!



posted on Mar, 18 2020 @ 04:32 PM
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a reply to: ThouArtGod

Considering what the average tv watcher knows about guns, they can probably get away with a grenade launcher blowing up a skyscraper and people would believe it.



posted on Mar, 18 2020 @ 04:40 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

But truthfully- if I see one more tiny block of C-4 blow up a mall...
True story- my first 8 years were in the Crayon Eater BDE, and we used to light our cigs with lit pieces of the stuff.



posted on Mar, 18 2020 @ 07:52 PM
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a reply to: ThouArtGod

My personal favorite is when they throw the grenade and the house blows up.



posted on Mar, 18 2020 @ 07:56 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Well- obviously they cut a gas line (and welded everything shut first) before you tossed said grenade...

But hey, we live in a universe where Zombie porn has created a nation of people who are both panicking, and hoping for the worst.



posted on Mar, 18 2020 @ 08:12 PM
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a reply to: ThouArtGod

Wait, you mean the people I occasionally deal with AREN'T zombies?



posted on Mar, 18 2020 @ 08:36 PM
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a reply to: ThouArtGod

Yup, Active duty here. I've been up from 0200 - 2200 every day since last Thursday coordinating stuff for my own small unit and my sick folks and their families.

We just today started planning for if the town surrounding my base needs support for treating the elderly.

We're not arresting anyone, confiscating any weapons or any other crap like that.



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