Serving Reservists in the House ?

Goatman

ADC
Book Reviewer
#1
I was going to post this in Cav - the old farts complain there is no contemporary stuff - but then I thought it would be more interesting to compare and contrast with US/World experience.


This guy is an elected member of the House of Commons. He is also one of a handful of serving Reservists in Parliament. He is currently on the ground in Afghanistan, albeit in Kabul rather than Lashkar Garh or Sangin.

Whilst I am aware of the illustrious record of some Members of Congress -are there any currently operational Representatives/Senators ? If so who and where ?


MP Mark Lancaster believes in having first-hand experience of what you are talking about before you get up to say your piece in the Commons.The Defence Select Committee member and TA officer has duly packed his kitbag and joined troops in Afghanistan.In between helping to co-ordinate construction projects in Helmand province in the south of the country and catching up on his constituency work, Mark is regularly filing dispatches to Citizen readers during his six-week tour of duty. His diary open
Monday August 14
I'd be lying if I said I slept well last night. Despite being on operational tours before to Bosnia and Kosovo the leaving bit doesn't get any easier.
For the third time in my life I find myself standing on a platform at St Pancras station with just the clothes I'm standing up in and a small bag of personal things not knowing exactly when I will be returning home. It's the strangest things that you notice, like the fact that the word 'return' has been crossed out on my military travel warrant, logical I suppose, why waste a return ticket if it's not needed?
Can't help thinking about my family on the trip up to the mobilisation centre at Chilwell, especially as we sit at Leicester train station and I see the car park where I got down on one knee and asked Katie to marry me 11 years ago, what a real romantic I was back then, engaged in Leicester train station car park!
Tuesday August 15
Enter the machine, the mobilisation centre at Chilwell, two days of rushing around like a madman.
First the medical, somethings have moved on, no blunt needles anymore but some things never change, I'm given every injection under the sun, 'just in case'.
The sight test was more of a memory test, just learn the second bottom line and you can't go wrong. My hearing is 100 per cent, Katie was always convinced that my hearing was 'selective' and it looks like she's right.
Good to see a dentist, the closest I've got to seeing a NHS dentist for some time. Next the kit issue, why are you always given more kit that you have space in the bags they give you to put it in? I'm sure it's a standard storeman's joke. The kit is good - great drinking systems for the desert and the only thing 'out of stock' was Major's desert rank slides.
Have to make do with colonel's and fold them over, the storeman joked it was probably the closest I'd ever get to Colonel, alas I think he's right.
Wednesday August 16
Slept better last night, a morning of weapon handling tests. Don't like the look of the bayonet, definitely wouldn't want to be on the wrong end of that, I wonder if they'll let me take it on as hand baggage? In true military style I'm taken to Brize Norton no less than nine hours before my departure time, hurry up and wait.
Thursday August 17
Flight finally left at 0200 and landed in Kabul at
midday. As we came in to land we dropped very low to reduce the chance of missile attack and you could almost reach out and touch the mountains.
Everywhere is dusty brown from the sky, a real desert. But then as unbelievable at it sounds, as I stepped off the plane the heavens opened and Kabul had its first downpour in weeks, all over my kit that had been nicely laid out on the runway by the RAF.
There's a scene in the film 'Good Morning Vietnam' as the new recruits get off the plane in pristine uniforms, the hardened, ragged veterans get on it to go home, I really did feel like the new guy. A short trip by Saxon armoured vehicle to my base in the centre of town where I'm issued with yet more kit and a bed in a four man room, well I say 'room', perhaps converted shipping container would be a better description but it's more than adequate.
Friday August 18
Perhaps it's the heat and the altitude, (Kabul is at nearly 6000ft) but it's hard work even walking about in just uniform. I'm certainly not looking forward to my first trip out of camp in full body armour, webbing and equipment.
Initially at least I am to be based at HQ ISAF, or to use its full title Headquarters International Security Assistance Force, known locally as 'Euro-Disney' because of the multitude of nations that are based here.
My first full day 'In-theatre' was spent in a series of briefings, warning me of the many hazards ranging from the Taliban to camel spiders and scorpions and issuing me with a multitude of passes. On a lighter note I find the camp
laundry. It's amazing how little things like discovering that I won't have to do my own washing can cheer you up!
Saturday August 19
Got up early and went to the gym. I've decided this is probably the one opportunity in my life when there is no excuse not to lose some weight.
Today is my first chance to try and get stuck in to my job. After a bit of 'direction' by the Brigadier, it appears my role is to try and tie together the vast array of reconstruction projects that have been identified around the country, such as new schools, roads and hospitals, with the various sources of funding that are available from the International community, each with their specific requirements as to what sorts of things they are prepared to support. With several hundred projects identified and countless potential sources of funding it's a complete maze, but It looks to be a good job, with a balance of being out and about on the ground as well as a bit of calm here at HQ.

Sunday August 20
A full working day. Apparently being Afghanistan it's Friday when we're allowed to drift in 'late', (wish I'd known that last Friday.) A grim reminder of exactly where I am today as I woke to discover all of the flags at half mast. Apparently 4 US soldiers were killed yesterday during fighting in the South. The odd thing is nobody really talks about it, I guess there's little point. The world and mission has to go on.
FWIW,

Lee Shaver
 
#2
Goatman said:
I was going to post this in Cav - the old farts complain there is no contemporary stuff - but then I thought it would be more interesting to compare and contrast with US/World experience.


This guy is an elected member of the House of Commons. He is also one of a handful of serving Reservists in Parliament. He is currently on the ground in Afghanistan, albeit in Kabul rather than Lashkar Garh or Sangin.

Whilst I am aware of the illustrious record of some Members of Congress -are there any currently operational Representatives/Senators ? If so who and where ?


MP Mark Lancaster believes in having first-hand experience of what you are talking about before you get up to say your piece in the Commons.The Defence Select Committee member and TA officer has duly packed his kitbag and joined troops in Afghanistan.In between helping to co-ordinate construction projects in Helmand province in the south of the country and catching up on his constituency work, Mark is regularly filing dispatches to Citizen readers during his six-week tour of duty. His diary open
Monday August 14
I'd be lying if I said I slept well last night. Despite being on operational tours before to Bosnia and Kosovo the leaving bit doesn't get any easier.
For the third time in my life I find myself standing on a platform at St Pancras station with just the clothes I'm standing up in and a small bag of personal things not knowing exactly when I will be returning home. It's the strangest things that you notice, like the fact that the word 'return' has been crossed out on my military travel warrant, logical I suppose, why waste a return ticket if it's not needed?
Can't help thinking about my family on the trip up to the mobilisation centre at Chilwell, especially as we sit at Leicester train station and I see the car park where I got down on one knee and asked Katie to marry me 11 years ago, what a real romantic I was back then, engaged in Leicester train station car park!
Tuesday August 15
Enter the machine, the mobilisation centre at Chilwell, two days of rushing around like a madman.
First the medical, somethings have moved on, no blunt needles anymore but some things never change, I'm given every injection under the sun, 'just in case'.
The sight test was more of a memory test, just learn the second bottom line and you can't go wrong. My hearing is 100 per cent, Katie was always convinced that my hearing was 'selective' and it looks like she's right.
Good to see a dentist, the closest I've got to seeing a NHS dentist for some time. Next the kit issue, why are you always given more kit that you have space in the bags they give you to put it in? I'm sure it's a standard storeman's joke. The kit is good - great drinking systems for the desert and the only thing 'out of stock' was Major's desert rank slides.
Have to make do with colonel's and fold them over, the storeman joked it was probably the closest I'd ever get to Colonel, alas I think he's right.
Wednesday August 16
Slept better last night, a morning of weapon handling tests. Don't like the look of the bayonet, definitely wouldn't want to be on the wrong end of that, I wonder if they'll let me take it on as hand baggage? In true military style I'm taken to Brize Norton no less than nine hours before my departure time, hurry up and wait.
Thursday August 17
Flight finally left at 0200 and landed in Kabul at
midday. As we came in to land we dropped very low to reduce the chance of missile attack and you could almost reach out and touch the mountains.
Everywhere is dusty brown from the sky, a real desert. But then as unbelievable at it sounds, as I stepped off the plane the heavens opened and Kabul had its first downpour in weeks, all over my kit that had been nicely laid out on the runway by the RAF.
There's a scene in the film 'Good Morning Vietnam' as the new recruits get off the plane in pristine uniforms, the hardened, ragged veterans get on it to go home, I really did feel like the new guy. A short trip by Saxon armoured vehicle to my base in the centre of town where I'm issued with yet more kit and a bed in a four man room, well I say 'room', perhaps converted shipping container would be a better description but it's more than adequate.
Friday August 18
Perhaps it's the heat and the altitude, (Kabul is at nearly 6000ft) but it's hard work even walking about in just uniform. I'm certainly not looking forward to my first trip out of camp in full body armour, webbing and equipment.
Initially at least I am to be based at HQ ISAF, or to use its full title Headquarters International Security Assistance Force, known locally as 'Euro-Disney' because of the multitude of nations that are based here.
My first full day 'In-theatre' was spent in a series of briefings, warning me of the many hazards ranging from the Taliban to camel spiders and scorpions and issuing me with a multitude of passes. On a lighter note I find the camp
laundry. It's amazing how little things like discovering that I won't have to do my own washing can cheer you up!
Saturday August 19
Got up early and went to the gym. I've decided this is probably the one opportunity in my life when there is no excuse not to lose some weight.
Today is my first chance to try and get stuck in to my job. After a bit of 'direction' by the Brigadier, it appears my role is to try and tie together the vast array of reconstruction projects that have been identified around the country, such as new schools, roads and hospitals, with the various sources of funding that are available from the International community, each with their specific requirements as to what sorts of things they are prepared to support. With several hundred projects identified and countless potential sources of funding it's a complete maze, but It looks to be a good job, with a balance of being out and about on the ground as well as a bit of calm here at HQ.

Sunday August 20
A full working day. Apparently being Afghanistan it's Friday when we're allowed to drift in 'late', (wish I'd known that last Friday.) A grim reminder of exactly where I am today as I woke to discover all of the flags at half mast. Apparently 4 US soldiers were killed yesterday during fighting in the South. The odd thing is nobody really talks about it, I guess there's little point. The world and mission has to go on.
FWIW,

Lee Shaver
Sen Lindsey Graham (R-SC) is a Col in the USAF Reserve (where he's an appeals court judge) and spent a few days in Afghanistan this summer trianing military lawyers there.

There are a few others currently in uniform in the House. I don't think they've deployed to the current operational theatres though.
 

the_boy_syrup

LE
Book Reviewer
#3
Goatman said:
I was going to post this in Cav - the old farts complain there is no contemporary stuff - but then I thought it would be more interesting to compare and contrast with US/World experience.


This guy is an elected member of the House of Commons. He is also one of a handful of serving Reservists in Parliament. He is currently on the ground in Afghanistan, albeit in Kabul rather than Lashkar Garh or Sangin.

Whilst I am aware of the illustrious record of some Members of Congress -are there any currently operational Representatives/Senators ? If so who and where ?


MP Mark Lancaster believes in having first-hand experience of what you are talking about before you get up to say your piece in the Commons.The Defence Select Committee member and TA officer has duly packed his kitbag and joined troops in Afghanistan.In between helping to co-ordinate construction projects in Helmand province in the south of the country and catching up on his constituency work, Mark is regularly filing dispatches to Citizen readers during his six-week tour of duty. His diary open
Monday August 14
I'd be lying if I said I slept well last night. Despite being on operational tours before to Bosnia and Kosovo the leaving bit doesn't get any easier.
For the third time in my life I find myself standing on a platform at St Pancras station with just the clothes I'm standing up in and a small bag of personal things not knowing exactly when I will be returning home. It's the strangest things that you notice, like the fact that the word 'return' has been crossed out on my military travel warrant, logical I suppose, why waste a return ticket if it's not needed?
Can't help thinking about my family on the trip up to the mobilisation centre at Chilwell, especially as we sit at Leicester train station and I see the car park where I got down on one knee and asked Katie to marry me 11 years ago, what a real romantic I was back then, engaged in Leicester train station car park!
Tuesday August 15
Enter the machine, the mobilisation centre at Chilwell, two days of rushing around like a madman.
First the medical, somethings have moved on, no blunt needles anymore but some things never change, I'm given every injection under the sun, 'just in case'.
The sight test was more of a memory test, just learn the second bottom line and you can't go wrong. My hearing is 100 per cent, Katie was always convinced that my hearing was 'selective' and it looks like she's right.
Good to see a dentist, the closest I've got to seeing a NHS dentist for some time. Next the kit issue, why are you always given more kit that you have space in the bags they give you to put it in? I'm sure it's a standard storeman's joke. The kit is good - great drinking systems for the desert and the only thing 'out of stock' was Major's desert rank slides.
Have to make do with colonel's and fold them over, the storeman joked it was probably the closest I'd ever get to Colonel, alas I think he's right.
Wednesday August 16
Slept better last night, a morning of weapon handling tests. Don't like the look of the bayonet, definitely wouldn't want to be on the wrong end of that, I wonder if they'll let me take it on as hand baggage? In true military style I'm taken to Brize Norton no less than nine hours before my departure time, hurry up and wait.
Thursday August 17
Flight finally left at 0200 and landed in Kabul at
midday. As we came in to land we dropped very low to reduce the chance of missile attack and you could almost reach out and touch the mountains.
Everywhere is dusty brown from the sky, a real desert. But then as unbelievable at it sounds, as I stepped off the plane the heavens opened and Kabul had its first downpour in weeks, all over my kit that had been nicely laid out on the runway by the RAF.
There's a scene in the film 'Good Morning Vietnam' as the new recruits get off the plane in pristine uniforms, the hardened, ragged veterans get on it to go home, I really did feel like the new guy. A short trip by Saxon armoured vehicle to my base in the centre of town where I'm issued with yet more kit and a bed in a four man room, well I say 'room', perhaps converted shipping container would be a better description but it's more than adequate.
Friday August 18
Perhaps it's the heat and the altitude, (Kabul is at nearly 6000ft) but it's hard work even walking about in just uniform. I'm certainly not looking forward to my first trip out of camp in full body armour, webbing and equipment.
Initially at least I am to be based at HQ ISAF, or to use its full title Headquarters International Security Assistance Force, known locally as 'Euro-Disney' because of the multitude of nations that are based here.
My first full day 'In-theatre' was spent in a series of briefings, warning me of the many hazards ranging from the Taliban to camel spiders and scorpions and issuing me with a multitude of passes. On a lighter note I find the camp
laundry. It's amazing how little things like discovering that I won't have to do my own washing can cheer you up!
Saturday August 19
Got up early and went to the gym. I've decided this is probably the one opportunity in my life when there is no excuse not to lose some weight.
Today is my first chance to try and get stuck in to my job. After a bit of 'direction' by the Brigadier, it appears my role is to try and tie together the vast array of reconstruction projects that have been identified around the country, such as new schools, roads and hospitals, with the various sources of funding that are available from the International community, each with their specific requirements as to what sorts of things they are prepared to support. With several hundred projects identified and countless potential sources of funding it's a complete maze, but It looks to be a good job, with a balance of being out and about on the ground as well as a bit of calm here at HQ.

Sunday August 20
A full working day. Apparently being Afghanistan it's Friday when we're allowed to drift in 'late', (wish I'd known that last Friday.) A grim reminder of exactly where I am today as I woke to discover all of the flags at half mast. Apparently 4 US soldiers were killed yesterday during fighting in the South. The odd thing is nobody really talks about it, I guess there's little point. The world and mission has to go on.
FWIW,

Lee Shaver
6 weeks nice work if you can get it

:x :x
 

Goatman

ADC
Book Reviewer
#4
the_boy_syrup said:
6 weeks nice work if you can get it

:x :x
Meaning - you're a would be volunteer who can't get a post?
Or
you're a would be volunteer who can't do a seven month tour ?

or
you're serving in AFG - like him - but will be there a lot longer ?

Do elucidate Wiggy....

Have to say I was after some US / Australian input - perhaps there are none ?

Le Chevre
 

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