Minden Coy (LI)

#1
Anyone here from Minden Coy? Would like to chat about camp, etc. I am scheduled to participate in an exchange. I'd really like to chat with some people from the company to find out more about the unit.

I understand concerns about security etc., PM me if you'd like to exchange email addresses and the like. I'd like to know about the surrounding community around Minden, to discuss how a typical camp goes for a TA (LI) company, to know if there is a regimental mess planned and so on.

Those are just some of the things I am interested in. If you'd like to know more about my unit, my home city, how the National Guard works (US equivalent to your TA), I can share that info with you as well. I don't presume that all of you want to know this, but if you are curious, read on.

I know a few things about the TA, for example I am told that you are not required to attend your monthly assemblies but if you miss them that you dont get your bounty at the end of the year. Also, I am told that TA Soldiers may resign from the TA if they wish.

When compared to the US National Guard, its similar in that we have camps, though we call them 'A.T.' which is slang for 'annual training', which is usually conducted in the summer for about 20 days.

Soldiers in the NG must attend monthly drills or they could be arrested by the local civilian police. Its rare that it happens (I've been in the Guard for 8 years, and seen it happen twice) but it is possible. Once arrested the soldier stays in jail for the weekend or until a non comissioned officer retrieves him. We cannot resign from the national guard, and we don't receive 'bounties.' You may be released for being gay (if you choose to make that public), being a habitual drug user, wife beater, drunk driver, having over 20% body fat for more than 6 months, troubles with civilian law enforcement, you understand, the usual.

We do have 'bonuses' which are sums of money that are usally from $3000 to $15000. They are split in half and the Soldier receives half of the amount up front and half at the end of an enlistment contract, (typically 3 or 4 years long) after the government taxes about 15% of amount. During OIF, OP TELIC as you call it, if a Soldier is deployed to Iraq, and re-enlists he will typically receive the entire bonus amount in one lump sum and free of tax, that amount is currently $15,000 (us).

Our chain of command is odd in the National Guard. When we are not called to Federal Service (for example OPTELIC), we belong to the Governor of the State in which our unit resides. A Governor is the chief executive of the civilian government for the state. The Governor may call us to active state service to provide assistance to the state government or during natural disasters. We can assist law enforcement agencies, but cannot arrest civilians. Its part of the Posse Comitatus act.

I am aware that the UK Army has a very strong regimental system. The closest thing to that is the National Guard. You see the Companies, Battalions, Brigades, and Divisions in the NG have been part of the state in many cases since the 1700's. So, its not uncommon to have Soldiers serving in the same Company that Grandfather served in during WWII.

We don't have that long and rich tradition that you have, but for a young nation like us, ours is a long and rich tradition, obviously not nearly as long as yours.

If your experience with Americans is that of the ignorant and brash, I hope to dispell the myth that we are all ignorant, fat, brash, snobbish, etc. I will not make ill references to your Royals, as long as you dont bring up bill clinton and monica. I have no intention of besmirching your honor or national pride.

Our light infantry companies are about 100 men. We have as standard weapon the M4 carbine. In each 9 man infantry squad, we have 7 each AN/PVS-14 night vision monoculars, and 2 each AN/PVS 7B's, 2 each M249 S.A.W or minimi I think you call it, 2 each M203 40mm grenade launchers, and 7 each M4's. There are three NCO's per squad. A Staff Sergeant serves as the squad leader, and two Sergeants serve as the fire team leaders. We typically use the AN/PRC126 FM radio to communicate within the platoon, but are phasing in the new MBITR radios now. For operations that encompass larger distances between squads we use the AN/PRC119 ASIP radio, which features digital encryption, frequency hopping, and other security measures.

Its saturday, time for beerlarrinous. Too much typing. Star Wars Episode three is showing tonight at the movies. Thanks for your time.
 
#2
Out of interest NG , what's your daily rate of pay while on duty?

And how much do you get in extra payments, for being deployed to the giant kitty litter. Do you get taxed at all, or a reduced rate of taxation whilst serving outside CONUS?
 
#3
Wow. I think there's more info on the ANG here than on their website. I am not in EWRR but I hope you enjoy your exchange. As for dispelling myths about being brash, snobbish etc., most of us don't perceive all Americans that way and I'm sure the guys in Minden Coy will not expect you to prove anything. My advice to you is not to ask where the red bit of the LI badge comes from as you will probably never hear the end of it.
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
#4
army_of_1 said:
Wow. I think there's more info on the ANG here than on their website. I am not in EWRR but I hope you enjoy your exchange. As for dispelling myths about being brash, snobbish etc., most of us don't perceive all Americans that way and I'm sure the guys in Minden Coy will not expect you to prove anything. My advice to you is not to ask where the red bit of the LI badge comes from as you will probably never hear the end of it.
Ah Paoli and also the washington bible and no you cant have it back!
 
#5
We are paid according to our rank, and then the number of 'Unit Training Assemblies' or UTA's scheduled for a drill weekend. Typically most NG Soldiers show up on Saturday morning and work until Sunday evening.

That equates to a MUTA or Mobilized Unit Training Assmbly, four. There are two UTA's in a 24 hour period. So a drill weekend for most Soldiers is called a MUTA 4.

Since our light infantry brigade is an 'enhanced' brigade, we typically have MUTA 5's which begin on Friday evening, and about twice a year we have MUTA 7's, where you show up on Thursday morning and are released Sunday evening. MUTA 7's are real ass kickers, you arent worth a shit at your civilian job monday morning.

Anyhow my pay for a typical MUTA 5 equates to $463.20. Thats gross before taxes. Actual take home pay is about $320.

I hear that in the UK, Soldiers do alot of live firing. In the US we typically dont live fire more than twice a year. But we do TONS of blank firing with the MILES 2000 battle simulation gear, there are some weapons that miles cant duplicate like the M203, and it gets kind of silly at times when a guy is taking 'cover' behind a hedge. But other than that its good fire and maneuver training for infantry. Especially in urban trianing, which we do alot of.

Thanks for the welcome.
 
#6
Not a member of Minden, but have had them play enemy (opfor as you lot call it) a few times. Cant answer any of the regimental questions etc, but they seemed like a decent enough bunch of guys. They are from Yorkshire though, so you might want to invest in a translator ;)

You may be released for being gay (if you choose to make that public), being a habitual drug user, wife beater, drunk driver, having over 20% body fat for more than 6 months, troubles with civilian law enforcement, you understand, the usual.
:lol:
 
#10
I'm in minden, and my Sjt and I are the British chunk of the exchange.

Minden Coy is based in Wakefield (a horrible little city) and Doncaster (a horrible little town).

We work in Platoons of 30 men (3 squads of 8 + Cmd) and there are 3 Platoons for a Coy (as well as HQ Platoon which is smaller). The light units are armed with SA80 rifles (they are rubbish) and the LSW support weapons (an SA80 with legs). We also carry anti-tank LAWs and GPMG's (Machine Guns). The current Coy contains only 80 men.

Minden Coy is one of Four making up the EWRR which is an amalgamation TA Battalion that usually supports its regular counterparts. When the Regulars need an extra man/squad/platoon or even coy then they ask and we send.

Minden Coy is also the RECCE Coy of the Battalion and so contains RECCE Platoon and the sniper trained element of the Battalion. Minden Coy is so named after the aforementioned famous battle, but the coy has been through many changes in the last 40 years (at one point we were even a Tank Recce company!) and the whole system is due to change next year again in order to come into line with Regular army changes. Primarily, however, we take our lineage from the Kings Own Yorkshire Light Infantry, of which there is plenty of info on the web.
 
#11
Interesting that the Americans have a Staff Sergeant at platoon command level, and Sergeants with each "squad" / fire team - i.e. quite heavily manned with NCOs. What do Corporals do, out of interest?
 
#12
Burgers said:
Primarily, however, we take our lineage from the Kings Own Yorkshire Light Infantry, of which there is plenty of info on the web.
For the regular part of the LI regt yes, the TA KOYLI were originally West Riding Volunteer corps of Rifles (I think with a jacket style badge - the Shefield and Leeds part of the rifle corps had one). The Wakefield TAC was the original Barracks for the volunteer corps (Original markings are near the main door carved into the stone)
 
#13
A jacket style badge? Is that with arms hanging from the sides and buttons down the middle? :?

Or is it like that glorious cap badge, complete with battle honours that sits proudly on the head dress of a member of a Rifle Regiment? 8)
 
#16
may have had to re-role but they formed 2 Tank regiments and like the TA KOYLI they formed two artillery regiments.
The association disbanded a few years ago but reformed a year or two latter.
Quite a few LI used to attend the functions, but I'm not sure what the association was (other than Wakefield and Leeds are close to each other)
 
#17
Corporals in US infantry.

Its not common to have a Corporal in a Squad. But if we do it usually means that the Soldier is assigned the duties of a Sergeant, but has not attended/graduated from the Non Commissioned Officer Academy's Primary Leadership Development Course -or- PLDC, (often referred to as 'pull dick') Because while the course is required for every Soldier in the Army to advance, for most Infantry Soldiers this course is a waste of perfectly good training time, example: "this is how you do a patrol, this is how you do an ambush, etc."

Our rank progession works like this: Private (E-1), Private (E-2), Private First Class (E-3), Specialist (E-4) [a corporal is also an E-4], Sergeant (E-5), Staff Sergeant (E-6), Sergeant First Class (E-7), First Sergeant (E-8), Sergeant Major or Command Sergeant Major (E-9).

The difference between a Corporal and a Specialist is that a Corporal is an NCO while a Specialist is not. Specialists are usually the guys that have been around the company a long time, and usually know what the hell they are doing, but still too new to be a Sergeant. There is also an informal organization called the 'Spec Four Mafia', which handles discipline issues and seniority in a 'physical' manner. In some units the mafia is strong in others it is not or does not exist. Often times a specialist is a really clever fooker, but does not have the judgment to be a Sergeant, or the poor bastard is just continually fooked by his chain of command and hasnt been able to get that promotion.

In the above paragraph about rank progession, you will notice the terms E-1, E-2, etc. This indicates the pay grade, not the rank.

Burgers,
Are you the Platoon CDR? You two are coming to Oregon? If so, I can fill you in on the training area, etc. The Battalion Leadership, in particular my company Commander are going to make sure that you have a really good time and get to see alot of Oregon, not just the training ranges. I think they plan to show you around the State a day or two before or after training. You are going to Gowen Field in Idaho, and it fooking sucks there, it sucks there ALOT.

Weather: Day, Hot and Shitty with winds and dust. Nights, Cold (very) and Clear. Gowen Field is on the South Western edge of Idaho, very near Boise. It is covered with small brush (1 to 5 ft tall). Low rolling hills, excellent mounted infantry country, but we are light infantry, so it will suck.

If you would like to look at the training outline let me know. Its a Brigade size camp this year, there will be attachments from Oklahoma, California, and Washington. And if you are the Platoon Commander or Leftenant, they are planning to actually have you command a Platoon the entire two weeks, you will be with C/1-186 from Roseburg, Oregon. A good company.
 
#18
Glad to be corresponding with the other half of the exchange!! I looked at photos from pubs in Doncaster, there are some cute girls there, so it can't be all bad. (Can it?)

Your platoons are 30 men? Our platoons, squads, and companies are slightly larger. Will the UK stay with the SA80, or is there another rifle expected to replace it?

We used to have a system in the US Army, where a regular division was composed of 3 brigades, and in the event of war, a National Guard brigade would mobilize and join the division, bringing the total number of brigades in the division to 4. We called it the 'Roundout Brigade.' But it didnt work at all in the Gulf War in 1990, and shortly thereafter we scrapped the program.

No Soldier from the National Guard will mobilize by himself to fill a one man shortage in a regular unit. The National Guard unit is activated and the Soldiers that make up that unit deploy with their unit. UNLESS, the Soldier volunteers to be a replacement for another National Guard unit already mobilized.

In the Oregon National Guard (each of the 50 states has their own portion of the National Guard) we make 'replacement packages', where we send 30 to 40 Soldiers en masse, to replace shortages in Oregon National Guard Units in Iraq and Asscrackistan. In other words if the commander of the mobilized unit says 'send me 5 Soldiers,' he will get a replacement pacakage. Consequently the National Guard units, once deployed abroad will not get replacements from the regular Army.

I am a Staff Sergeant, with 5 years active service, and nearly 7 years in the National Guard. In my opinion (after having deployed to combat with them) our biggest weakness is our officer corps. They are not ready to aggressively engange and destroy targets abroad. The NCO's and enlisted men, (at least in the infantry) will kill you without much fuss. Officers are often overly concerned with spreadsheets and matrixes, and how to carefully word clever reports.

Our Battalion, the 1st Battalion, 186th Infantry Regiment, is from South Western Oregon. We have companies in Ashland, Medford, Klamath Falls, Grants Pass, and Rosegurg Oregon. The Battalion is composed of Headquarters Company, located in Ashland, A company located in Medford, B Company in K Falls (my unit), C company in Roseburg, and D company in G Pass.

D company has our 120mm mortar platoon, the Scout Platoon (recce) [snipers are from this platoon], and several anti tank platoons with ITAS TOW II/.50cal/ Mk 19 grenade launchers/ all mounted on Hummers, there are dozens of hummers in the company. A, B, & C companies are light infantry rifle companies, and Headquarters company has all of our support staff - mechanics, medics, surgeon, transportation, C2 (***** and cants), S1,2,3,4, cooks, clerks, etc.

But the US Army is going through changes as well, and this force structure which has been the same for over a decade will change. We are transforming to the new Brigade Unit of Action model. Currently our Battalion is one of three which make up the 41st Brigade Combat Team, or 41st BCT. I've read about KOYLI and now Minden.

If you are interested in our units history, you may want to check out the 41st Division during WWII. We kicked alot of jap a$$ in the pacific, earning the nickname "the Jungleers", its a little known fact that our unit did tons of amphibious landings all over the pacific theater. There are some A$$ Kickin' sonsabitches in Oregon.
 
#19
here is also an informal organization called the 'Spec Four Mafia', which handles discipline issues and seniority in a 'physical' manner. In some units the mafia is strong in others it is not or does not exist
sounds interesting
 
#20
NG_M4_Shooter,

exellent post. Ill try and get a photo of HQ Coy 8(Y)LI (one of the forerunners of Minden) scanned and posted on here, guess the ANG guys on that are also from ur unit.
Can't help but feel envy in the way you guys get deployed, we're generally sent as individual replacements to regular army units (something many of us dislike strongly). Only a few years ago we were structured under similar lines (biggest TA unit was Bde sized).
If you have any links for 41 Div please post them.

As for Doncaster lasses, I married a Yorkshire lass - they ain't easy ones to keep - looking for lasses in a ex-mining area like Donnie..........

p.s. Don't mention the miners strike, they ain't forgotten it. Spent 3 years in the (Y)LI being called Scab.
 

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