"Three things the US Army Chief of Staff Wants You to Know"

#1
Three Things the Army Chief of Staff Wants You to Know

Picked up via warontherocks - boils down to 'embrace the suck', 'disobey orders - smartly' and 'break out of your bubble'.

All three points are salient and well argued, and I would suggest apply as equally to the British Army as they do the US Army.
 

seaweed

LE
Book Reviewer
#2
No.2 has always been needed -- think of Nelson breaking away without orders from the sacred Line at the Battle of Cape St Vincent (1797). Or Codrington* sinking the Turkish Fleet at the Battle of Navarino (1826).


* which I suppose is why he achieved the ultimate British recognition, having a pub named after him (in Mossop St, Chelsea).
 
#3
Funny about the Kandahar quote.....the Boardwalk as he alludes to is long gone, due to the rumblings of previous US 1* who said that "having a Tim Hortons and Burger King just isnt War"!
But he mentions untethering themselves from the Logisitc umbilical cord.....having been worked closely recently on this with them, no one wants to deploy a US soldier on the ground without the "comfort" of the Medevac helicopter, the deployable small UAV's, ISTAR assets which all need that Logistical chain to support. And harking back to the Iwo Jima comment, body bags were accepted back then but since Vietnam for the US especially, they get a bit uptight about a repeat of that in recent times. So where theUS Inf soldier goes, there will always be 10 soldiers supporting with the daily C17/130 runs bringing in the spares!
 
#5
having a pub named after him (in Mossop St, Chelsea)
Where my parents first met in the 60s :grin: Had a few afternoon lock ins in there in the 80s:drunken:

On a more serious point his third point is a serious issue for all democracies that have reduced their forces to minimal levels. Those who are inherently brought up by their parents to be used to the armed forces are more likely to join. There is also a potential contempt for the "civilian" population, although I see this as more of a US problem; but then again the lady shouting at the gates of Downing Street doesn't mean that we aren't going to have it too.
 
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#6
I must have been in a different type of army as I seem to have spent many periods out on a limb in some sh1thole with little support and no comms. Even in UK
 
#7
Three Things the Army Chief of Staff Wants You to Know

Picked up via warontherocks - boils down to 'embrace the suck', 'disobey orders - smartly' and 'break out of your bubble'.

All three points are salient and well argued, and I would suggest apply as equally to the British Army as they do the US Army.
WTF does 'embrace the suck' mean? Have I missed a major amendment to the English language?
 
#10
Three Things the Army Chief of Staff Wants You to Know

Picked up via warontherocks - boils down to 'embrace the suck', 'disobey orders - smartly' and 'break out of your bubble'.

All three points are salient and well argued, and I would suggest apply as equally to the British Army as they do the US Army.
Lets not get exited, he'll be gone in three years, sadly from my perspective but probably not from that of the average career soldier.
 

Caecilius

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#11
'US 4* feels the need to explain the basics of mission command and that soldiering can be uncomfortable sometimes'. It's not especially encouraging...
 
#12
'US 4* feels the need to explain the basics of mission command and that soldiering can be uncomfortable sometimes'. It's not especially encouraging...
Lets be honest, at least he's being honest about it.

There are plenty of UK 4*s who'd fail that test.
 

Caecilius

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#13
Lets be honest, at least he's being honest about it.

There are plenty of UK 4*s who'd fail that test.
I'll give you that. It's just troubling that he doesn't only say 'we aren't good at it', he has to actually explain what it is in basic terms.
 
#14
Meanwhile back in the UK, we had a brief experiment with forward thinking and ended up with sleeves up or sleeves down, tuck it in or let it hang, is it a shirt or a jacket, stable belt must be on show, belt must be worn over smocks.......
 

seaweed

LE
Book Reviewer
#15

Found this in the advertising accompanying Rum Ration. Seems to be pertinent (haven't read it).
 

Caecilius

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#16
Meanwhile back in the UK, we had a brief experiment with forward thinking and ended up with sleeves up or sleeves down, tuck it in or let it hang, is it a shirt or a jacket, stable belt must be on show, belt must be worn over smocks.......
How true. It'd be much better for us to spend the inordinate amount of time and effort that the US do in ensuring uniformity. It's really made them effective at low level thinking in the last two wars they've fought. Oh, wait...
 
#17
How much time does it take to issue a uniform and then issue orders on how to wear it? Perhaps follow it up with a public bollocking or two if required for non conformity.
Job done and move onto more important matters, such as biscuit availability and coffee.....
 

Caecilius

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#18
How much time does it take to issue a uniform and then issue orders on how to wear it? Perhaps follow it up with a public bollocking or two if required for non conformity.
Job done and move onto more important matters, such as biscuit availability and coffee.....
Quite a lot actually, as the sleeves up/down debate showed. Anyone who's worked with the Americans will know just how much command effort is devoted to uniformity - it involves an awful lot of time, directives and SNCO enforcement. The net result is an army and marine corps that's much less effective on an individual level than ours and proved very poor at being able to conduct effective low level (and higher level) tactics in Iraq and Afghanistan. They also don't have the intricacies of the regimental system, which is the main reason why a single pan-army diktat about dress won't work for us.

Maybe their significant issues aren't connected to their rigid personal grooming and uniform standards, but equally I don't think our relaxed attitude to uniform is symptomatic of very much either.
 
#19
That's surely a symptom of weak leadership though? Just put out clear direction then stamp all over anyone who decides to do their own thing, then you wouldn't have to keep wasting time banging the same drum.
Back in 2012 when our lovely new uniforms were first issued we had the clear direction, what didn't happen was the stamping all over people bit........
 
#20
Caecilius, nail head.
They also have had various uniform variations with the USMC, Air Force, US Army and Air Cav US Army all having different styles. Whereas they don't have any Regimental shenanigans to worry about, they do love their badges. So you see a lot of "RANGER", AIRBORNE", "SF", "EOD" on the left arms and then others on the right. Though they do wear down and out, month in month out as they are not stupid. A lot do look scruffy but then I am in an operational environment so luckily there are no "BASTION SWO iron your uniform" directives here!
But whereas on PT Brits will wear any phys kit, the US will wear the "insert ARMY, AIRFORCE" motto t-shirt and shorts. No variation at all on this.
Again they like their numbers in excess. Go to any US base and where Brits are double/triple hatted the US will have someone for each role. They also heavily rely on Contractors; an example a base "Camp Manager" is a DoD civilian (complete with uniform and pistol) taking over from green suit Colonel.



By the way, "SF" doesn't stand for US THEM.......its Security Force (!) but like I said, they like their badges.
 

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