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Subject: RE:NG units in Vietnam?
Just a little (non-insulting) joke...    5/13/2002 1:54:37 AM
Dear Colonel, if you read the posts carefully, you will find that my joke was not insulting at all. It was just a pun on benmurpheys post, who spoke about NG units serving in "Dessert" Storm. Dessert - food - buffet, I think you get the joke. I think especially soldiers should always keep their humour, at least that''s what I learned during my service
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Colonel Ron    RE:NG units in Vietnam?   5/14/2002 11:23:57 AM
And then there are those who -- when taken to task for their snide comment(s) -- seek to avoid accountability by claiming that they were "just joking; ha-ha, see the funny joke." Perhaps I'm not smart enough to get it. Maybe. But with graduate degrees from two prestigious universities and membership in Mensa, I doubt that such is the case. I appreciate humor as much or more than the next person -- but what little humor there is in the "dessert" pun is far outweighed by the overall thrust of the remark. If you have actually served then you should realize that. My comments stand.
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Elbandeedo    RE:Was NG units in Vietnam? - In Defense of Reservists    5/14/2002 12:08:17 PM
Like the active army, there several different 'worlds' of reserves There is the gung-ho (Huah!) world of Infantry, Armor, the Rangers, Special Forces and the others involved directly in Combat Arms... and then there is 'support'. The quiet professionals - these folks are often from very technical backgrounds, they make 'good' money on the 'outside' and it's a real sacrifice for them to lose 2 weeks of that high civvie pay while training as soldiers. Let's not even talk about losing a valuable weekend of fixing the house up, 'doing' the yard, family time, dating, whatever - and sacrificing it in the name of the weekend drill every month! (How many of us would willingly give up one weekend a month to 'train' as citizen-soldiers - not very many!) There are problems in the support branches in relation to the APFT, Weight Control, and in some instances, just plain old attitude. And there is little that can be done about it 'from within'. It's difficult, if not impossible, to 'change the system' from within. A hard-charging NCO or Officer comes to a 'support' unit, sees things 'wrong' and tries to fix them, and they are often told to 'relax, it's a different world in the reserves - we have to go easier on these people!' This relates directly to the retention issue - in the Reserves (correct me please, I may be VERY mistaken here!) if a soldier decides to 'quit' they simply don't have to show up for weekend drill a certain number of times and they will be administratively dropped from the rolls. (???) If an Officer or NCO 'lights a fire' under a deserving soldiers backside, there is always the chance that the soldier might not come back. In many ways this mirrors the active Army - with the exception of the ability to 'quit' - though there is a process for getting rid of soldiers who don't really belong in Active Army as well (inability to adapt). I've served alongside reservists overseas (twice in Bosnia) and they are quiet professionals who get the job done under difficult circumstances - no different from the active side of the house. I got the joke - and I see the Colonels point as well. (the 'joke' might be said about active troops in support rolls as well! Been there, seen that!) The bottom line is that these citizen soldiers who are citizens most of the time DO sacrifice more than MOST Americans would be willing to give up, to serve their country - and they don't do it for 'money' 'cuz it ain't that good! I say give the reservists credit where credit is due. There are very real issues in the Reserves - but every service, active or reserve, in every country of the world face similar issues! Making light of anothers 'service to their country' is NOT the way to 'make friends' or 'influence people'. I didn't get too specific here because I'm old Army and there's no need to 'air the dirty laundry' of either the reserves or the active component. The ones with the problems will sort them out eventually, one way or another! Good Officers and NCOs will 'square them away'. E.
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