Should an Officer with no Honour still lead?

Discussion in 'Officers' started by Plant-Pilot, Jul 21, 2005.

Welcome to the Army Rumour Service, ARRSE

The UK's largest and busiest UNofficial military website.

The heart of the site is the forum area, including:

  1. Now that the Courts Martial of the Captain in charge of the Royal Artillery Display Troop is over (Except for the possible appeal) having been found guilty, the question has to be asked, if the excuse of "I didn't know anything about it" should be used by a supposedly competent officer who is in charge od a specialized but very small, troop sized unit. If he was in command of a regiment, or even a Battery that was distributed over a wide geographic area maybe, but a troop?

    The sentence seemes enough to let him know that he should conduct himself and his responsibilities better, and even if career delaying, it's not career stopping. The anouncement that he intends to appeal smacks of petty squirming and not the 'Stiff upper lip', 'take it on the chin' attitude that I would expect from a soldier holding the queens commission and expected to command respect in his subordinates.

    Is this what we expect from our officers? Comments?
     
  2. Remember the days of compulsory donations to the ABF in the event of an ND at RMAS? Does this still obtain or are the human rights of officer cadets considered to be infringed by such "black punishments"?

    I feel that this is a righteous finding - can we discuss this while it is under appeal by the way? - but the fundamental principle surely applies that if you are in charge, you are responsible regardless of geography, politics and technology. Ask Col Mendonca for his take on that...ok MOD I'm off thin ice, in fact I'm off!
     
  3. I haven't kept up with this case, I confess, so I have no idea of the context. As a troopy, I often discovered via scuttlebutt some of the frankly disgusting things some soldiers got up to in their free time, and I twice overheard openly racist comments from my subordinates. I cringe with guilt now, but at the time - as a brand new subby - I did not have the moral courage to confront them as I should have done. However, with a few years' experience under my belt, I would have kept a much tighter grip on the NCOs and their standards. If the OC of this RA Display Troop was a senior Captain then he certainly would have little excuse for his negligence, in my opinion.

    And no, donations to the ABF are no longer an unofficial punishment at RMAS any more than being tw*tted in the face by the CSM. And a fcuking good thing, too.

    IF
     
  4. It seems that his main line of defence was that he knew nothing about the baloon so he couldn't be responsible for it. It has been reported that his lack of knowledge was despite the fact that the 'Balloon Team' were part of his troop, they stored the balloon next door to his office and he was socializing with them the night before the incident.

    Wouldn't such a denial mean either 'a lack of moral fiber' or guilt of neglegence in that you don't know what your 'very small unit' consists of? There should be a point at which you should be a gentleman, admit that you've been caught in the wrong and accept your punishment, or is that only expected off the other ranks?
     
  5. He's appealing a sentence that reduces him in seniority by 18 months and he has to pay costs of £7000.

    FOR F&*KS SAKE MAN - A CHILD DIED AS A RESULT OF NEGLIGENCE IN THE TROOP YOU WERE OFFICER COMMANDING OF!!! tAKE IT ON THE F&*KING CHIN!!!

    ANOTHER SERVING SOLDIER AND HIS FAMILY HAVE HAD TO WAIT TWO YEARS TO SEE SOME MEASURE OF JUSTICE AND YOU ARE F&*KING APPEALING AND PROLONGING THEIR PAIN YET AGAIN!! IF YOU HAD ANY SORT OF HONOUR YOU WOULD SQUARE UP TO THE WORLD AND GET ON WITH YOUR LIFE FOR THIS REASON ONLY!! THINK OF OTHERS AND NOT JUST YOUR OWN MISERABLE EXISTENCE!!!

    CNUT!!!

    If anybody knows this chap personally/professionally have a word in his shell-like and get him to face up to his responsibilities. The lack of honour he has shown to date will do more to cripple his future career than any removal of seniority.....

    MODs/PLANT-PILOT - could we rename this thread to something more accurate thean just 'Excuses'. Something more accurate like 'Dishonourable Twat Tries to Wriggle out of his Responsibilities' would seem suitable.
     
  6. He's appealing a sentence that reduces him in seniority by 18 months and he has to pay costs of £7000.

    FOR F&*KS SAKE MAN - A CHILD DIED AS A RESULT OF NEGLIGENCE IN THE TROOP YOU WERE OFFICER COMMANDING OF!!! tAKE IT ON THE F&*KING CHIN!!!

    ANOTHER SERVING SOLDIER AND HIS FAMILY HAVE HAD TO WAIT TWO YEARS TO SEE SOME MEASURE OF JUSTICE AND YOU ARE F&*KING APPEALING AND PROLONGING THEIR PAIN YET AGAIN!! IF YOU HAD ANY SORT OF HONOUR YOU WOULD SQUARE UP TO THE WORLD AND GET ON WITH YOUR LIFE FOR THIS REASON ONLY!! THINK OF OTHERS AND NOT JUST YOUR OWN MISERABLE EXISTENCE!!!

    CNUT!!!

    If anybody knows this chap personally/professionally have a word in his shell-like and get him to face up to his responsibilities. The lack of honour he has shown to date will do more to cripple his future career than any removal of seniority.....

    MODs/PLANT-PILOT - could we rename this thread to something more accurate thean just 'Excuses'. Something more accurate like 'Dishonourable Twat Tries to Wriggle out of his Responsibilities' would seem suitable.
     
  7. I actually agree with you Bagpuss, but to have opened the thread with a title that is too emotive could have led to a well intentioned MOD from sending it straight to the NAAFI or even worse pulling it altogether. I feel the subject is too important for that to have happened.

    My point of view is that we have to follow these people, or in many cases, get on with things in their absence and let them take all the praise when things go right. Nobody really cares if that's the case, it's the way it's always been. But when things go wrong, and they went horribly wrong in this case, we should be able to rely on the support of the people who would have taken the glory had things been different.

    This officer got off with very little actual sentence despite trying to blame everyone other than himself. Even worse, he's not willing to 'take it on the chin', put it down to experience and let the parents of the unfortunate child get on with their lives. That is not the action of an 'Officer & a Gentleman'. The child's parents have said that they wish to get on with their lives and feel no malice to the two accused.

    As a side note, it was the total lack of support from his chain of command and shabby way he was treated that was the reason that the judge decided to sentence the L/Bdr in charge of the balloon on the day, with a repremand, the minimum sentence available to him considering he had pleaded guilty to the offence. A case of the experienced Captain being able to learn from the L/Bdr, the judge and the child's parents what honour really is.

    If you haven't noticed by now I am disgusted with the lack of honour and integrity shown by this officer. :evil:
     
  8. I agree with your point PP, but a thread entitled 'Excuses' in the Officers' Mess keeps it hidden. Would a more appropriate forum at least be Current affairs
     
  9. I finally found out how to change the title and changed it to "Should an Officer with no Honour still lead?" as that is the question. When everything goes to pot, who wants an officer in charge that is going to let everyone else sink while trying to save himself? That's not what we expect from our leaders.
     
  10. No mate - 2 weeks or Restrictions of Privilleges.....joy of joys!
     
  11. I don't think that it is a good thing. Apparently all the current generation want is to be an "executive" on exec money - so the pocket is a good place to hit them! The ABF donations concentrated the mind in a way "discipline" probably wouldn't have. It also enhanced the feeling of being part of something long-standing and good. I hasten to add I was never asked to contribute in this styley!

    I do not recall ever hearing of a cadet being twatted by his CSM - or indeed someone else's. I did see a Colour Sergeant throw a Carl Gustav at an Omani oficer once but that was really not as serious as the tabloids or human rights lawyers of today would have made it out. "Mohammed" frankly deserved it, he had already tried to "lose" the gun twice that night! However Robbo's red-mist moment had the desired effect because we couldn't get him to put it down after that!!
     
  12. I think it all boils down to competency. I doubt he received any formal training in the balloon and may not have made time to learn about it. If you supervise other dangerous activities you recieve formal training which is then recorded in your P file, eg RMQs, DSO, WSO etc. What he should have done was ensured that everybody involved in this Heath-Robinson contraption had the relevent qualifications and highlighted his lack of training up through the chain of command. But then again, hindsight is a wonderful thing. There but for the grace of god....
     
  13. Righto, so my thread in support of this officer gets pulled, whereas this vitriolic tirade of abuse against someone Bagpuss evidently has never met is allowed to run. I generally find that having all the facts is the best starting point for making judgements on others. Basically Bagpuss, get off your high horse, stop throwing the over dramatic use of the word "honour" around, you're talking pump. Great officer, well respected by all who have served with him, who hopefully will not be lost to the service. Unlike many others in todays officer corps, at no stage will his future career prospects be running through his head as a reason for appealing.
     
  14. Taken from the Telegraph


    Some former officers say that Col Mendonca, 41, has been made a scapegoat, but serving officers, in Iraq and elsewhere, say privately that the decision to court martial him for negligence reflects well on the Army.

    One officer in Basra said: "We have to be accountable for our actions and have faith in the system."

    Another said: "The buck stops with the commanding officer. Our credibility on the ground depends on full accountability being shown."

    The case would be "followed as closely in Iraq or Afghanistan as it will be in the UK", he said.

    A third officer with senior command experience in Iraq said: "Any officer not prepared to accept responsibility for all that happens under his command forfeits the right to that command. You can delegate responsibility but you can never discharge yourself from it."

    Running out of JNCOs?

    Presumably that Senior Officer would be willing to face the Courts too or perhaps to resign in the event of similar claims coming to light whilst under his tenure? After all it is surely a reflection on his Command and Leadership as his comments make clear?
     
  15. Auld-Yin

    Auld-Yin LE Reviewer Book Reviewer Reviews Editor

    LWM - taking your point a bit further - and I hope I have picked it up correctly. If Col Mendonca is culpable because of the alledged actions of the men under his command, surely therefore his Brigadier should be next in the 'dock' , followed swiftly by the Div Comd, Theatre Comd, etc, etc right up to T Bliar esq. In fact, everyone who voted Labour is guilty.