What motivates soldiers to risk their lives in in combat?

#1
Hi everyone, I'm currently undertaking a research project into motivation and I'm particularly interested in the factors that encourage soldiers to risk their lives in combat. As an ex-serviceman myself I've been able to identify some of the main factors through personal experience and interviews, but I'm now looking for wider input.

If you are currently serving or have served in the Army, at any rank (and with any country), I'd be very grateful if you would take just 2 minutes to answer a couple of questions. For the time being I'm interested only in the Army; once I've completed this stage of the research I'll be testing the results for consistency in the other services so please only visit the survey now if your experience relates to service with the Army.

The survey can be found at http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/6JLPJXG

The survey is completely anonymous and will only take 2 minutes to complete.

Please also forward the link to anyone you know who may have an opinion on this subject; I'm looking for input from as many people as possible.

Thanks for your help,

Chris
 
#2
If they didnt the opposition would overrun their position and they would get killed
 
#4
I have spoken to my wife about this as we served on opposite sides of the iron curtain. (The wicked witch is Romanian.)

Her answer is that she was conscripted and had to serve as part of the deal on getting a free university education.

My answer is that it beats working for a living.

Edited to add.
My father's answer was, because the krauts invaded Poland.
 
#5
Serious answers only folks. If you've got nothing relevant to say then move on to the NAAFI.
 
#6
Hi everyone, I'm currently undertaking a research project into motivation and I'm particularly interested in the factors that encourage soldiers to risk their lives in combat. As an ex-serviceman myself I've been able to identify some of the main factors through personal experience and interviews, but I'm now looking for wider input.

If you are currently serving or have served in the Army, at any rank (and with any country), I'd be very grateful if you would take just 2 minutes to answer a couple of questions. For the time being I'm interested only in the Army; once I've completed this stage of the research I'll be testing the results for consistency in the other services so please only visit the survey now if your experience relates to service with the Army.

The survey can be found at http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/6JLPJXG

The survey is completely anonymous and will only take 2 minutes to complete.

Please also forward the link to anyone you know who may have an opinion on this subject; I'm looking for input from as many people as possible.

Thanks for your help,

Chris
link doesn't work 😞
 
#7
If our input is of any help would there be anychance of you posting the findings/conculsions of your reseach project on here when it is completed?

Only fair after all.
 
#8
As I said a big shouty bloke has a lot to do with it. Call it good leadership or whatever but the skill of giving commands well and knowing they are right really is a strong instant motivator when you head is saying stay there its safer. And survey done
 
#16
You'll be thick as a whale to think the Infantry are dense. There's probably more Graduates serving as Toms in the Infantry than anywhere else in the Army (or Marines).
Any evidence for this?
 
#17
Yes. there is, let me dig it out.

He's the marine side of it....

A speech given by Maj Gen Buster Howes CGRM and repeated at the "C Group" dinner 2010


The FCOC Paper states that ‘the future agile force favours the capability of people (physical and mental robustness, flexibility and a premium on training) over platform numbers.’

The activities I have described are undertaken by extraordinarily high-calibre people

The Boys and girls are Bright:

Forty percent of Royal Marine recruits are educationally qualified to be officers. Over 10% have university degrees. Two currently in training have Masters degrees and when I was running the Commando Wing fifteen years ago, two fully qualified vets joined up – we only discovered this when none of their respective troops visited the Sickbay because they were being ‘physicked’ with Horse Drench and Saddle Linament.

I visited 539 Assault Squadron in Plymouth a month ago and talked to a group of coxswains who were about to conduct a long navigation exercise in Off Shore Raiding Craft to the Scilly Isles. One Marine looked older than the rest and I asked him what his background was. He explained that he had joined the Corps late and had, to use his word, ‘wasted’ some time working at the ‘Hadron Collider’ – smashing atoms - as a Professor of Sub-Atomic Particle Physics. I told him not to smash my boat up!

Fifty percent of my officers finish in the top ten percent at the Joint Staff College. That said, we have the lowest ratio of Officers to other ranks in the 3 Services.

No, the Boys are Resilient, indeed I can reassure Julian [Professor Julian Lindley French, Eisenhower Professor of Defence Strategy, Royal Netherlands Defence Academy], that footballers aside, Tommy Atkins has not become soft - 3 weeks into 40 Commando’s recent tour Sergeant Lee Walters was caught up in an intense fire fight and was shot in the neck, the hand and the foot. He refused to be listed, and sitting up in bed, informed his anxious wife of his misfortunes himself. Incidentally, on HERRICK 5, Sgt Walters engaged in another battle, on a pitch-black night, fell down a well. Which his Mates thought – 3,000 miles from the sea- was taking a commitment to amphibious operations a bit too far.

Three weeks ago Captain John White, OC Recce Troop, 40 Commando was blown up on patrol. Barely conscious, having lost both his legs and one of his arms, he sought to reassure his anxious Marines as they loaded his stretcher onto the MEDEVAC flight. “Don’t worry Boys, ‘gold’ in the Para Olympics Next!”

The Corps numbers 3% of the manpower of Defence, but constitutes 37% of the badged manpower of UK Special Forces

And Finally – my Boys are Imaginative and Innovated - One example:

The week I became Commandant General, Recruit Phillip Cain, 6 weeks into training contracted Meningitis, despite repeated multiple amputations to stem the spread of the disease, he very quickly died. His young and still inexperienced Troop were adamant that they would carry his coffin at his military funeral and were issued with Regimental Blues four months early to do so with exemplary precision and self-control. At the 7 month point, they duly completed their four Commando Tests and were, in time honoured tradition, given their green berets at the end of the 30 Mile March on Dartmoor. Philip Cain’s father was there too and received a piece of precious green felt from Prince Michael of Kent … for in spirit and soul his boy was also a proud Commando Soldier, since his Mates, on their own initiative, had carried his ashes throughout


........ With thanks to Tentoes...... The Para's and line infantry get stick for being thickos as well but they have more than their fair share of graduates in the ranks, but hey, look upon the Infantry as being thicko's if it makes you feel good, somethings got to make up for the knowledge you're in the forces for one simple reason...... to support them. :)
 
#18
Yes. there is, let me dig it out.

He's the marine side of it....

A speech given by Maj Gen Buster Howes CGRM and repeated at the "C Group" dinner 2010


The FCOC Paper states that ‘the future agile force favours the capability of people (physical and mental robustness, flexibility and a premium on training) over platform numbers.’

The activities I have described are undertaken by extraordinarily high-calibre people

The Boys and girls are Bright:

Forty percent of Royal Marine recruits are educationally qualified to be officers. Over 10% have university degrees. Two currently in training have Masters degrees and when I was running the Commando Wing fifteen years ago, two fully qualified vets joined up – we only discovered this when none of their respective troops visited the Sickbay because they were being ‘physicked’ with Horse Drench and Saddle Linament.

I visited 539 Assault Squadron in Plymouth a month ago and talked to a group of coxswains who were about to conduct a long navigation exercise in Off Shore Raiding Craft to the Scilly Isles. One Marine looked older than the rest and I asked him what his background was. He explained that he had joined the Corps late and had, to use his word, ‘wasted’ some time working at the ‘Hadron Collider’ – smashing atoms - as a Professor of Sub-Atomic Particle Physics. I told him not to smash my boat up!

Fifty percent of my officers finish in the top ten percent at the Joint Staff College. That said, we have the lowest ratio of Officers to other ranks in the 3 Services.

No, the Boys are Resilient, indeed I can reassure Julian [Professor Julian Lindley French, Eisenhower Professor of Defence Strategy, Royal Netherlands Defence Academy], that footballers aside, Tommy Atkins has not become soft - 3 weeks into 40 Commando’s recent tour Sergeant Lee Walters was caught up in an intense fire fight and was shot in the neck, the hand and the foot. He refused to be listed, and sitting up in bed, informed his anxious wife of his misfortunes himself. Incidentally, on HERRICK 5, Sgt Walters engaged in another battle, on a pitch-black night, fell down a well. Which his Mates thought – 3,000 miles from the sea- was taking a commitment to amphibious operations a bit too far.

Three weeks ago Captain John White, OC Recce Troop, 40 Commando was blown up on patrol. Barely conscious, having lost both his legs and one of his arms, he sought to reassure his anxious Marines as they loaded his stretcher onto the MEDEVAC flight. “Don’t worry Boys, ‘gold’ in the Para Olympics Next!”

The Corps numbers 3% of the manpower of Defence, but constitutes 37% of the badged manpower of UK Special Forces

And Finally – my Boys are Imaginative and Innovated - One example:

The week I became Commandant General, Recruit Phillip Cain, 6 weeks into training contracted Meningitis, despite repeated multiple amputations to stem the spread of the disease, he very quickly died. His young and still inexperienced Troop were adamant that they would carry his coffin at his military funeral and were issued with Regimental Blues four months early to do so with exemplary precision and self-control. At the 7 month point, they duly completed their four Commando Tests and were, in time honoured tradition, given their green berets at the end of the 30 Mile March on Dartmoor. Philip Cain’s father was there too and received a piece of precious green felt from Prince Michael of Kent … for in spirit and soul his boy was also a proud Commando Soldier, since his Mates, on their own initiative, had carried his ashes throughout


........ With thanks to Tentoes...... The Para's and line infantry get stick for being thickos as well but they have more than their fair share of graduates in the ranks, but hey, look upon the Infantry as being thicko's if it makes you feel good, somethings got to make up for the knowledge you're in the forces for one simple reason...... to support them. :)
That pretty much sums up the ethos of the British Army.
 
#19
I think the Marines and the Paras have often attracted intelligent blokes, as has the SAS. The Marines in particular tend to attract older recruits, so they often have higher quals.

That said, I would wager that by percentage, the Royal Signals beats the RM example above. Even excluding the bit where a number of our SNCOs pick up a BSc (hons) by finishing a trade/promotion course, there are a fair few in the ranks who are carrying MScs now on rcruitment.
 

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