Originally posted by Ginga
You're surprised? People who join the military and put their lives on the line are right at the bottom of the social ladder. They join because they
have little other options and then adopt a nature of violence through conditioning in the name of patriotism.
I think your views of the military are a little dated my friend. I admit there was a time in our nation’s history in which the military was staffed
by individuals such as you described; however, I assure you that today’s military is not staffed with men and women who have no other options.
I served in US Army Special Forces, and in the infantry and in intelligence branches as well. I can tell you that in all three branches I encountered
men and women with varied backgrounds and with a range of intellect I’d estimate as one standard deviation above the normal on the bell curve.
Now specifically in Special Forces (nowhere near the caliber or level of DEVGRU – BTW, just standard operators) my Soldiers represented the most
intelligent and capable in the military.
Very sought after go getters that strive to be the best at whatever they do. I’d put my Sergeant E5 medic up against any civilian doctor in a
contest of emergency trauma management any day. I doubt many ER docs have as much experience with GSW as he did. My Operations/Intelligence Sergeant
spoke 4 languages fairly fluently (Pashtu, Farsi, MS Arabic and Polish), played the cello like a pro and did calculus to "relax".
Most were from working middle class America and one was even a Lawyer who gave up his practice to enlist for about 30% of what he made so he could
serve after 9/11 and is now a career Soldier - enlisted too BTW not an officer (though he certainly could be) and he has a JD. Some were from poor or
humble beginnings for sure - the sons of rural poor to include myself; none felt they were limited to the military - all were happy to be there making
a difference. Not a one considered himself a victim/pawn or wanted anyone's sympathy.
As for the OP – well, this man faced a choice that all mid to late career servicemen and women face – to stay with something that you might not
feel the passion for any longer so that you can get your retirement benefits or leave with nothing for a chance at doing something else while you are
still young enough to do so.
While I dislike the “all or nothing” system of retirement (I’d rather see a 401K or a situation in which at some point – say 10 years one
would be vested and get a reduced amount - something for his service) that is not the current set of rules. So either you choose to stick it out for
20 or leave. It’s a personal choice. To stay for 16 then blame the system is kind of a dick move IMO. He knew the rules and the system each time
Now about the protection for his family – that is where the whole “silent professionals” motto part comes into play.
I don’t know the circumstances that lead to his real identity being linked to this operation but if it was his doing (in a book or like this
interview for instance) then he is the one who put his family at risk.
If it was some lapse of security or breach on the part of the government then they need to pony up and make amends by disappearing him and his family
into some sanitization program. (Like witness protection.) After which he needs to shut his hole and drive on like Jon Doe.
As for the VA delay that is the result of everyone with a butt hurt from their service filing a claim for the most frivolous of issues. I have a
“friend” who filed a claim for back pain (not associated with an injury) – I told him ffs dude you are 45 years old spent 25 years in Special
Forces, we all have back pain. He got 10% for it and another 10% for knee pain. So boom, there you go 240.00 of tax free money added onto his
retirement pay. The system is abused by people who don’t need it. I personally don’t know many men in their mid-forties who work outside at
physical labor who don’t have back and knee pain.
VA system is just broken - too many people abuse it and people’s legitimate claims are held up while these files are handled in the order they were