News story: New medal unveiled to recognise the fight against Daesh

#44
#45
The point about the emotional home stuff is simple - its there to illustrate that a big chunk of the RPAS force are switching between two utterly different worlds, with very different mental requirements that means one minute they are firing hellfire missiles on enemy convoys in Iraq and an hour later they could be picking little jimmy up from school.

The lack of space for decompression, for compartmentalisation and for coming to terms with doing the job is why I think the 'rigour' element applies here, for the reaper force and not for PJHQ.

Its an utterly specific way of life that places great strains and challenges on people and it is right that this is recognised. Medals are not all about risk - if they were then frankly we shouldnt have issued 90% of TELIC and HERRICK medals.
Its about risk and rigour. Having worked an ops desk at PJHQ I can testify that the rigour is equal to the strain on an op tour, the only difference is that you do your own laundry and cooking.

Ref the second bold, my second tour in AFG I didn't leave Lash but I worked like a dog for 6 months, just as the lads at the airhead, the REME guys and the supply guys did- hence the rigour, not risk, per se.
 
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#46
I’m an avid reader of your articles and normally agree with them but that is poorly argued nonsense - and clearly self serving. Let’s hope it doesn’t damage your credibility.

By the way where was this hardened accommodation in Bastion? There was a small amount (normally for civil servants doing a bit of tourism) but 98% were in tents whenever I transited through there. A case of any falsehood to make an argument?
 
#47
Its about risk and rigour. Having worked an ops desk at PJHQ I can testify that the rigour is equal to the strain on an op tour, the only difference is that you do your own laundry and cooking.

Ref the second bold, my second tour in AFG I didn't leave Lash but I worked like a dog for 6 months, just as the lads at the airhead, the REME guys and the supply guys did- hence the rigour, not risk, per se.
My mild frustration is that it seems that a medal is only announced once the Infantry seem to be involved. I've shot at both Iranian patrol boats and Somali pirates, and spent time at action against Yemeni missiles, but apparently I've never reached the "risk" boundary.


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#48
My mild frustration is that it seems that a medal is only announced once the Infantry seem to be involved. I've shot at both Iranian patrol boats and Somali pirates, and spent time at action against Yemeni missiles, but apparently I've never reached the "risk" boundary.


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#49
My mild frustration is that it seems that a medal is only announced once the Infantry seem to be involved. I've shot at both Iranian patrol boats and Somali pirates, and spent time at action against Yemeni missiles, but apparently I've never reached the "risk" boundary.


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Why is that though?

‘The process by which a British medal is instituted has been in place for many years. In the case of a campaign medal, the Commander-in-Chief of a particular campaign may make a recommendation for an award if they consider that service in that theatre, or under particularly rigorous circumstances, justifies the institution of a medal. That recommendation is passed to senior military officers who, if they are in agreement, submit the case to the Chief of the Defence Staff (CDS). If CDS approves the proposal the Secretary of State for Defence submits the case to the Committee on the Grant of Honours, Decorations and Medals, which is often referred to as the HD committee, through the Ceremonial Officer at the Cabinet Office. Following agreement by the HD committee, the case is then submitted to The Sovereign for approval. This process can take up to two years.

The eligibility criteria for each award or medal are determined by consideration of the rigours of the campaign. This is not standardised and each medal is considered on its own merits. In some circumstances, the qualifying period agreed has been as short as one day's service, whereas other medals or clasps require 90 days' continuous service.’
 
#50
My mild frustration is that it seems that a medal is only announced once the Infantry seem to be involved. I've shot at both Iranian patrol boats and Somali pirates, and spent time at action against Yemeni missiles, but apparently I've never reached the "risk" boundary.


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Alfred...you know the other maxim: its only true if a combat/PWO/Aircrew officer says it to a senior officer.
(apologies if you're a PWO - but you do seem too normal!)
 

Caecilius

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#51
Its about risk and rigour. Having worked an ops desk at PJHQ I can testify that the rigour is equal to the strain on an op tour, the only difference is that you do your own laundry and cooking.

Ref the second bold, my second tour in AFG I didn't leave Lash but I worked like a dog for 6 months, just as the lads at the airhead, the REME guys and the supply guys did- hence the rigour, not risk, per se.
I'm inclined to agree with this as I'm worried about the slippery slope here. There are any number of jobs in theatre that are pretty easy and carry comparatively little risk and/or rigour. There are plenty of jobs out of theatre where blokes are thrashing themselves in jobs that are vital to the operation. RPAS is a bit of an abberation in that they're operating kit that's in theatre, but PJHQ is a good example of where people are working on a specific operation but not in theatre (and not subject to flying hours). Cyprus is another.

If we start to move the line then there's a real risk that we won't be able to stop moving it and all sorts of people will be wandering around with tin having never set foot in theatre. We should keep it where it is in my opinion.
 
#52
do ships companies get a medal if they fire missiles into theatre (such as the subs who delivered TLAM on targets in Afghanistan)?

also, does it seem reasonable for an RPAS operator to say "i fought in the (insert war of choice) war" or something similar?
 
#53
I'm inclined to agree with this as I'm worried about the slippery slope here. There are any number of jobs in theatre that are pretty easy and carry comparatively little risk and/or rigour. There are plenty of jobs out of theatre where blokes are thrashing themselves in jobs that are vital to the operation. RPAS is a bit of an abberation in that they're operating kit that's in theatre, but PJHQ is a good example of where people are working on a specific operation but not in theatre (and not subject to flying hours). Cyprus is another.

If we start to move the line then there's a real risk that we won't be able to stop moving it and all sorts of people will be wandering around with tin having never set foot in theatre. We should keep it where it is in my opinion.
Bang on. I gave PJHQ as an example. You could equally add LIFC and 14 Sigs who are delivering live support to operations from the 'comfort of their own homes'. I'm sure that there are others.
 
#54
Its about risk and rigour. Having worked an ops desk at PJHQ I can testify that the rigour is equal to the strain on an op tour, the only difference is that you do your own laundry and cooking.

Ref the second bold, my second tour in AFG I didn't leave Lash but I worked like a dog for 6 months, just as the lads at the airhead, the REME guys and the supply guys did- hence the rigour, not risk, per se.
When I was at PJHQ people would actively volunteer to deploy as the TFH (Lash) or 1MEF (Leatherneck) LNO for 4-6 months because it was an easier gig than being on one of the OTs or the J5 floorplate.
 
#55
I’m an avid reader of your articles and normally agree with them but that is poorly argued nonsense - and clearly self serving. Let’s hope it doesn’t damage your credibility.

By the way where was this hardened accommodation in Bastion? There was a small amount (normally for civil servants doing a bit of tourism) but 98% were in tents whenever I transited through there. A case of any falsehood to make an argument?
The "tier 3" accommodation in Bastion 1 was put up in mid-'13 (if memory serves), just across the road from the cookhouse.
 

Caecilius

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#56
When I was at PJHQ people would actively volunteer to deploy as the TFH (Lash) or 1MEF (Leatherneck) LNO for 4-6 months because it was an easier gig than being on one of the OTs or the J5 floorplate.
Significantly easier. You also got Op allowance.

Bang on. I gave PJHQ as an example. You could equally add LIFC and 14 Sigs who are delivering live support to operations from the 'comfort of their own homes'. I'm sure that there are others.
Given that civvies are eligible for the medal, I think there are a fair few people in Cheltenham and Vauxhall who have a reasonable claim for providing an important and rigourous contribution to multiple ongoing operationsm They also face many of the issues RPAS operators experience, although admittedly not firing the hellfire themselves.
 
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#57
Given that the way we fight wars has changed, it's only right that we reconsider the way we recognise those who have contributed. Part of the Army's problem in recruiting/retaining/procuring/operating is that it continues to view challenges through Cardwell/Haldane or equally out-of-date lenses.
 
#58
Its a medal - its a sign of you doing something to help support the nation delivering military success. I find it pathetic that some people get so worked up and angry at the idea that because someone else was thrashing themselves on the wrong side of an arbitrary invisible line, they are somehow not worthy of recognition in the way that Pte Fucknuts who spent 30 days in the admin cell playing minesweeper is...

We work in a complex battlespace where people across the globe contribute to ops, and frankly I don't give a shit whether someone is doing SHADER in the UK, Cyprus, Iraq or the depths of Mongolia - if they spend the time doing op support and give the effort required, then give them the gong. There are far more important things to worry about than whether someone shouldnt have a medal just because they werent there man.

If its really so important, then introduce a clasp (e.g. SHADER - Iraq) to distinguish between support at home and away. Its really not difficult or contentious except to people scared of change. Lets go focus on things that really matter shall well like tucked in/out or rolled up/down?
 
#59
The Reaper crews do a job which carries a substantial mental and emotional burden and I suspect is storing up a long term series of PTSD issues over the next few years.
I suppose it is an extension of more traditional RAF type active service, with the exception of the aircrew not actually being "air" but merely "crew". For what it's worth I would not begrudge them the gong for their contribution, but it would be tactful (never a strong point at MoD) if service in theater was distinguishable.
 
#60
Its a medal - its a sign of you doing something to help support the nation delivering military success. I find it pathetic that some people get so worked up and angry at the idea that because someone else was thrashing themselves on the wrong side of an arbitrary invisible line, they are somehow not worthy of recognition in the way that Pte Fucknuts who spent 30 days in the admin cell playing minesweeper is...

We work in a complex battlespace where people across the globe contribute to ops, and frankly I don't give a shit whether someone is doing SHADER in the UK, Cyprus, Iraq or the depths of Mongolia - if they spend the time doing op support and give the effort required, then give them the gong. There are far more important things to worry about than whether someone shouldnt have a medal just because they werent there man.

If its really so important, then introduce a clasp (e.g. SHADER - Iraq) to distinguish between support at home and away. Its really not difficult or contentious except to people scared of change. Lets go focus on things that really matter shall well like tucked in/out or rolled up/down?
Anyone without a dog in this fight would think you're getting a bit miffed because people criticise your opinion
 

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