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Ban head‑punch bouts, Paras major demands

armchair_ninja

Old-Salt

Full text:

An Army major who called for a ban on “milling”, the selection test for the Paras in which recruits punch each other in the head, says that he spoke out because “it was the right thing to do”.

Major Andrew Fox, 40, who is due to leave the Parachute Regiment, drew online abuse after suggesting that the practice be halted on safety grounds.

Last year Major Fox became the most senior officer to talk about the effect of war on his mental health when he said post-traumatic stress disorder after three tours of Afghanistan left him a “bristling ball of hate and rage”. He later gave a number of interviews about mental health in the military.

Milling involves two soldiers of similar weight repeatedly punching each other in the face and head for a minute. They wear gloves, gumshields and headguards but are not supposed to block or avoid punches. It has been described as “a test of courage, determination and raw fighting spirit”. In 2018 a photograph showed the bloodied face and T-shirt of Lord Frederick Wellesley, 26, a descendant of the Duke of Wellington and a lieutenant in the Household Cavalry, after a milling bout.

Major Fox, who has commanded the regiment’s 3rd Battalion, was abused online after responding to a video of a particularly brutal bout posted on Twitter by the 2nd Infantry Training Battalion. The clip was accompanied by the message: “I think we’re getting #ArmyConfidence spot on. This is what controlled aggression looks like.”

The Mail on Sunday reported that Major Fox, who took part in milling when he was trying to join the Paras, replied in a since-deleted tweet: “Needlessly exposing recruits to head trauma . . . Time to leave this in the 1940s where it belongs.” After online criticism he replied: “To all the screenshot commentators and anonymous tweeters, I have only one message: I make absolutely no apology whatsoever. I’m happy to debate like an adult all day long. But childish, anonymous abuse? Not standing for it.” The MoD said: “We expect serving personnel to use good judgment and respect online.”
 
I take it nobody has ever joined the Army with a boxing or martial arts background. Does 3 PARA have a boxing team? You get more punches to the head on a P Company 10 miler, or the log race than in a milling bout.
 

Fake Sheikh

War Hero
Milling is unique to P Company & 2 minutes of controlled aggression.
They even have head guards these days, only time you get to punch as officer & get away with it.
Shows aggression, stamina & the ability to follow orders.
 
Ban milling? Perhaps we should stop doing the log race too since people have twisted knee's in that. Might as well ban the tab while we are at it, thats where most injury's happen.

Oh fuck it, let's just wrap them all in bubble wrap and armour.

"the right thing to do" is to put the hardest, fittest, most violent but most disciplined recruits into p company and leave it be. It's already bad enough that they have to wear head protection.

Have this guy's comments been taken out of context?
 
Milling is unique to P Company & 2 minutes of controlled aggression.
They even have head guards these days, only time you get to punch as officer & get away with it.
Shows aggression, stamina & the ability to follow orders.

The only thing that is unique is that its one of their tests. A lot of boxers are introduced to milling when they start, to show the difference between a normal fight and boxing.
You also get to punch officers if they are boxing.
 
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Headguards ? Gumshields !
That's not what milling is all about.

Its about pain, blood, snot and continued aggression.
They might as well ban punches to the head with all that gear on.
 
OP missed the opportunity to title the thread: Trouble At t'Milling....
 
Milling is unique to P Company & 2 minutes of controlled aggression.
They even have head guards these days, only time you get to punch as officer & get away with it.
Shows aggression, stamina & the ability to follow orders.

You're still spouting bollocks I see.
None of us had gum shields or head guards, and we all had to do it.

Unique to P Company my arse.
 
As a raw recruit we were all put into a boxing ring, gloves on, no head protection, and last man standing. This was in 1972. Royal signals 11th Sig Regt. April-July. 5 troop.............. FFS if us soft scaleys can handle it........
 

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