Soldier Systems just posted about the new US Army Mountain Warfare Leaders book. One of the appendix was a section on load planning and equipment selection. While it's nothing ground breaking, I thought it would be interesting to share, as it seems to mirror lots of comments made on Lightfighter over the years.

https://soldiersystems dot net/2020/04/27/us-army-issues-leaders-book-for-mountain-warfare-and-cold-weather-operations/#comments

Here are some excerpts:

"LOAD CARRYING EQUIPMENT

Personal load carrying equipment (for example, chest rig, plate carrier, and fighting load carrier [FLC]) should be adjusted or modified in order to be functional in mountain terrain. Essential kit needs to be accessible while moving with the pack on. Kits should be located above the belt line giving Soldiers room for an improvised harness and making room for their legs while climbing.

Operational history and current enemy situation must be considered to determine the optimal amount of equipment required. All non-life preserving equipment should be stowed in the pack. Soldiers use a layered approach by distributing gear between kit, pack, and on body. Ammunition, ordnance, and water can be split between kit on body and in the pack during movements...

 

 

ESSENTIAL EQUIPMENT AND CONTINGENCY GEAR Day Pack (20 to 30 liters): When a Soldier plans to be away from the bivouac site for the day on a patrol or mountaineering mission, the Soldier carries a light day pack. This pack should contain— • Extra insulating layer such as a polypropylene or waffle and pile top.

  • Protective layer such as a waterproof jacket and pants, rain suit, or poncho.
  • First aid kit.
  • Flashlight or headlamp.
  • Water bottle (capable of taking boiling liquids).
  • Cold weather hat.
  • Rations for the time period away from base camp.
  • Survival kit.
  • Improvised harness materiel or harness.
  • Carabiners.
  • Gloves.
  • Climbing rope (one per climbing team).
  • Climbing rack (one per climbing team).

Squad or team safety pack: When a squad-sized element leaves the bivouac site, squad safety gear should be carried in addition to the individual day packs. This can either be loaded into one rucksack or cross-loaded among the squad members. In the event of an injury, casualty evacuation, or unplanned bivouac, these items may make the difference between success and failure of the mission:

  • Sleeping bag.
  • Sleeping mat.
  • Squad stove.
  • Fuel bottle.

 

MOUNTAIN WARFARE AND COLD WEATHER OPERATIONS The 10 essentials: Regardless of what equipment is carried, the individual military mountaineer should always carry the 10 essentials when moving through the mountains. These essentials are-

  1. Map
  2. Navigation equipment.
  3. Sunglasses and sunscreen.
  4. Extra clothing.
  5. Headlamp.
  6. First aid kit.
  7. Fire starter (tinder or dryer lint ball).
  8. Matches or lighter.
  9. Knife.
  10. Extra food.

 

Mountain Kit: The type and amount of equipment Soldiers may need to operate in the mountains may change depending on many factors. The gear packing list should always be reviewed and re-evaluated prior to an operation...

PLANNING CONSIDERATIONS

Leaders must ask themselves the following questions when creating packing lists and load plans:

  • Is every item in your kit necessary?
  • Can you share anything with other members of your squad (for example, stove or filter)?
  • Can you accomplish multiple tasks with a single item?
  • Can you live without a few creature comforts for a short duration?
  • Does the packing list have the least amount of gear that does the most?

It is not possible to carry all necessary equipment for all possible contingencies. The Army risk assessment process provides an excellent framework for evaluating what equipment to bring or leave behind. Leaders use the likelihood versus severity model. Equipment falling into the moderate or low risk categories of residual risk should be considered for removal from the gear list....

...Remember, the enemy attacks where friendly forces are vulnerable.

Vulnerabilities lie in our fatigue due to loads carried during combat patrols in austere environments. Every effort must be put forth to reduce the load carried by the Soldier which will have a direct impact on the reduction of vulnerabilities.

Soldiers operating on foot in the mountains and in alpine terrain must pack light and smart to maintain a good balance of mobility and lethality.

Essentially, each piece of equipment a Soldier carries must perform multiple tasks and enhance the mission through lightening the Soldier’s overall load.

Small team mountain warfare is all about mobility and the load’s direct negative impacts on mobility.

Mobility equals lethality. Ounces equal pounds. Pounds equal pain"

Original Post

Whoever is writing doctrine for mountain warfare has far to much common sense.  You'll never make it in this Army that way.  This quote appears in the 2002 edition of FM 3-97.61 Military Mountaineering and the 2012 TC 3-97.61 Military Mountaineering

"Leaders must understand that each individual has a different metabolism and, therefore, cools down and heats up differently, which requires Soldiers to dress-up and dress-down at different intervals. Provided all tactical concerns are met, the concept of uniformity is outdated and only reduces the unit’s ability to fight and function at an optimum level.

Whoever is writing doctrine for mountain warfare has far to much common sense.  You'll never make it in this Army that way.  This quote appears in the 2002 edition of FM 3-97.61 Military Mountaineering ...

That one was pretty much solo written by one of our senior 10th SFG(A) Mountain Team NCOs. A graduate of the prestigious German/Austrian Armys'  Bergfuhrer (Mountain Guide) Course.  Detailed by the Army specifically to produce that volume back in the 90s. Then updated in 2002. Occasionally, Big Green lets actual SMEs produce written doctrine. IIRC, those editions were the first update of that manual since  the 1950s. 

Last edited by Community Member
@Community Member posted:

Provided all tactical concerns are met, the concept of uniformity is outdated and only reduces the unit’s ability to fight and function at an optimum level.

That just made my dick hard. 

As if millions of CSM / 1SG voices suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced...

@Community Member posted:

This quote appears in the 2002 edition of FM 3-97.61 Military Mountaineering and the 2012 TC 3-97.61 Military Mountaineering

"Leaders must understand that each individual has a different metabolism and, therefore, cools down and heats up differently, which requires Soldiers to dress-up and dress-down at different intervals. 

Question from an outsider: If the notion that different people might need different amounts of insulation was apparently a breath of fresh air...exactly how bad was the situation prior to that? Was somebody actually telling an entire group of people to put on/take off clothing at once?

@Community Member posted:

Question from an outsider: If the notion that different people might need different amounts of insulation was apparently a breath of fresh air...exactly how bad was the situation prior to that? Was somebody actually telling an entire group of people to put on/take off clothing at once?

In general? Yes. For the most part unless first line leaders had the backbone to fight for their men.

@Community Member posted:

In general? Yes. For the most part unless first line leaders had the backbone to fight for their men.

Insanity. That's one step away from making everybody wear the same size boots.

@Community Member posted:

Insanity. That's one step away from making everybody wear the same size boots.

Ooh, now there is some efficiency.  He's on to something.

Seriously, that is how the Army operates day-to-day.  A calendar date is picked and, whamo, the AC can now be turned on, and sleeves up at all formations.  Except no sleeves up anymore.  Some may have changed...

Remember that initiative, where we'd all wear jungle boots with pull-over insulation, for cold-weather?

Tankersteve

@Community Member posted:

That's one step away from making everybody wear the same size boots.

Congrats, you just got a "Promote over peers" on your NCOER / OER for that idea.

Sigh. 

There's a lot of ideas in the Army that need to die 

- Uniformity in Combat = discipline and combat effectiveness 

- Higher the PT Score, better the leader

- Weapons maintenance requires an absolutely spotless weapon 

- Ranger School is somehow relevant and not just a place to teach shitty leaders useless tactics

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When I was in Korea, it was specified at the exact temperature you were allowed to put on a fleece jacket in garrison.  If wearing the fleece you were required to also wear a beanie and gloves.  There were enough cold weather casualties the month before I arrived that they didnt care if you piled it on in the field though.  
It isn’t just the Army.  I attended a course a few months ago with some Marines.  The Marine students in my class had a few meetings with the post liaison because one of them had been sighted with his sleeves down.  Unlime every other Marine in the country that day 😆

You would think the guys making 1SG and CSM after an entire career in a wartime Army would have a different approach.  🤷‍♂️

My first duty station was Fort Richardson Alaska.  The CG required that the entire chain of command report to his office for any cold weather injuries to have each member of the chain of command explain what they failed to do to allow a cold weather injury to happen.  NOBODY cared what you wore so long as you were warm.  To this day, I've viewed clothing as PPE the same way that eye pro is.  Your ears are cold?  Put on your Army issue fleece cap.  I had a BN CSM ask me in Iraq why I was wearing my boonie hat.  I told him it's nomenclature was a sun hat and then pointed at the sun while it was 120 degrees out and said that has something to do with it.  This is the same CSM yelling at people to wear sunscreen.  It's stupid.  I can't see how wearing any piece of Army issue equipment (properly) can be considered "unprofessional".  

The number of leaders that spent their career in a wartime Army is already shrinking. I got into the Army when it was in full swing garrison operations, and that was already over 10 years ago.


"My first duty station was Fort Richardson Alaska. "

The Soldiers I meet that have served in Alaska are consistently very serious about proper use of cold weather PPE.  They must be doing something right up there.  The batch of cold weather injuries I mentioned earlier resulted in a 15-6.  One of the things that came out of the investigation was that someone from Bn leadership had put warming tents off limits, in Korea, in the winter.  One of the unfortunate things about the military is that a stupid decision can have terrible results for many people.  Just usually not the leader that made the decision.

"The number of leaders that spent their career in a wartime Army is already shrinking. I got into the Army when it was in full swing garrison operations, and that was already over 10 years ago."

Absolutely, two-three years ago I attended my recruiting brigade's annual training.  Nearly every recruiter in the Brigade had to attend.  I was struck by the large number of SGTs and SSGs that had not deployed.  I would guess that if you walked through a BLC or ALC class today, you would be hard pressed to find combat experienced NCOs.  Of course, this makes it more important for senior leaders that do have that experience to make wise decisions based on their experience and pass it down to younger Soldiers.  There were always those senior leaders in the early GWOT days that couldn't wrap their head around a wartime Army.  They tried to make the Army bend to their will and take the garrison downrange.  I suppose there are always those types. it wouldn't surprise me if troops in Iraq and Syria today are still dealing with that mindset.  

"I can't see how wearing any piece of Army issue equipment (properly) can be considered "unprofessional".  It's unprofessional to waste tax payer money by not letting equipment/uniform items bought by the Army be used because of your personal prejudices.  

I was amazed when that CG in Hawaii removed the requirement to wear reflective belts during PT sessions.  It's sad that something like that would actually be considered impressive.

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"Question from an outsider: If the notion that different people might need different amounts of insulation was apparently a breath of fresh air...exactly how bad was the situation prior to that? Was somebody actually telling an entire group of people to put on/take off clothing at once?"

"I'd like to have two armies: one for display with lovely guns, tanks, little soldiers staffs, distinguished and doddering Generals, and dear little regimental officers who would be deeply concerned over their General's bowel movements or their Colonel's piles, an army that would be shown for a modest fee on every fairground in the country.  The other would be the real one, composed entirely of young enthusiasts in camouflage uniforms, who would not be put on display, but for whom impossible efforts would be demanded and to whom all sorts of tricks would be taught. That's the army in which I should like to fight."  The Centurions, Jean  Lartéguy

This problem is as old as time. Some in leadership want a parade field army that looks great for those with OCD. Dress-right Dress, etc. 

 Others yearn for combat effectiveness at all times. Which is great at war time, sucks at peace time for garrison.

The biggest problem is trying to find the balance. That's what makes a truly effective leader. There are times when you need that structure and discipline of the OCD maniac, and other times when you need to cry havoc and let slip the dogs of war. Not everyone understands that.

4th ID at Ft Carson, 1976-79.  Cold injuries were taken very seriously. In the field we were allowed to wear whatever civilian cold weather gear we wanted as long as the outer layer was Army issued. Down jackets were just becoming widely available and could often be seen peeking out from our Korean War era parkas.

Leot

One thing I learned across 35 years in Big Green is that the Army is ultimately run by hide bound, OCD suffering,  Uniformity Nazis.

They float to the top ranks out of simple numerical superiority. Peers possessed of common sense are always in a minority. It's an immutable law of averages. Thus, drastic changes for the better are mostly an uphill battle against a fossilized Old Guard. Unfortunately in charge at most Decider levels.

So, over the decades, you got saddled with things like...

Black rifle furniture (M16, M16A1, M16A2/A3/A4, M4, M4A1, etc.) when 1950s prototype AR-15 furniture was originally OD. Because black shiny boots... and matching black rifles & leather gloves looked "more uniform" on parade. 

Perfectly functional, war proven OD green jungle boots that were only grudgingly adopted service wide, but in black.  Because... parade formations & shiny black boot syndrome.

Unit LBE SOPs. Because it's more important to Look Good than to Feel Good. Or be able to fight with what you actually need... placed where you need it. Or make allowances for left-handers. By god, there's only one place for that bayonet. For that single canteen. For those (limited to 2) ammo pouches. For that mandated L-shaped red filter flashlight mounted squarely into your shoulder firing pocket. And butt packs were the work of Satan.

Or umpteen iterations of PT, Dress, and Duty uniforms. Completely re-vamped every coupla years. Yellow track suits. Unit PT ensembles. Grey sweats. Bumble Bee blacks & yellows. Long Gray Line PT ensembles. Today's APFU. OG-107s, TCUs (Jungle Fatigues), ERDL, BDUs, ACUs, OCP.  Khakis, Blues, Greens, Pinks & Greens. Ever changing styles, lengths, materials, colors, logos.  Because historically speaking, many Generals & CSMs are secretly frustrated designers of Barbie clothing collections. 

Or starched combat uniforms. ERDLs, BDUs, even ACUs. Despite formal manufacturer guidance  recommending against it. Because it wore the uniforms out early and degraded designed-in camouflage pattern & dye effectiveness. 

Or a process for rolling up (then new) BDU sleeves  that required a Soldier to physically remove his/her blouse and do that precisely measured sleeve rolling with it placed on the ground or floor. I remember reading an Army Times article in the early 1980s.  A EUCOM based Army Captain claimed credit for coming up with that idea. His justification (other than uniformly rolled cuff widths and seamless camo coverage for a couple of extra inches of your upper arm) was sublime idiocy. That, in extremis, a Soldier could rapidly yank down  poly/cotton BDU sleeves for protection against Soviet NBC attack. A layer of cloth defense against nerve, blood, or mustard agents. Uniform Nazis actually applauded his forward thinking... as it gave them technical cover for implementing institutional uniform stupidity.  A procedure soon formally adopted Army wide.

Or the decades long Forever War on Umbrellas. Where Army folks, required to wear Class-A uniforms to daily HQ staff assignments... were forbidden from carrying umbrellas in the rain. Like when they had to trudge across a mile or so of outer ring Pentagon parking lots to their offices... in driving rain. Because we couldn't have Army Officers and NCOs looking like pussies in front of their comfortably dry USAF or USN peers (who got to employ common sense and use umbrellas). That was a near-violent uniformity debate for years. 

Or un-bloused boots. Hands in pockets. Or Hitler Tribute mustache regs. Or a hundred other trivial proscriptions having nothing to do with practical function, battlefield results, or optimized human performance in the field. 

And my very favorite: Maternity combat uniforms.

I could go on, but you get the point. Just needed to vent.

Seriously though, it seems that some of today's Army manuals, TCs, FMs, etc. are being written by SMEs instead of inexpert committees. For instance, several of the Army's small arms training FMs are light years ahead of the older versions.  

 

                                                                                                

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@Community Member posted:

...I could go on, but you get the point. Just needed to vent.                                                                               

The amount of vitriol towards uniformity stupidity warms my heart. 

Uniformity in garrison? Extremely annoying at times. Uniformity in the field? Absolutely idiotic. It amazes me that so many leaders in the Army can't grasp the concept that people are all different from each other, and therefore have different clothing and equipment requirements. 

But the idiocy-indoctrination starts at the very beginning; at OSUT, we were told in no uncertain terms that if you wore your Gortex, then by regulation you had to wear fleece cap, gloves, and a fleece jacket underneath. No matter what. Fast forward six years, and my BOLC instructors were losing their minds because we students had the audacity to wear our fleece caps in the field in windy, 35 degree weather. Their response to the, "Uh, but it's cold..." comments? "Lieutenants, you all need to have some discipline and enforce the standards."   Because the post commander decreed that you could only wear a fleece cap when it was below 32 degrees....

"Question from an outsider: If the notion that different people might need different amounts of insulation was apparently a breath of fresh air...exactly how bad was the situation prior to that? Was somebody actually telling an entire group of people to put on/take off clothing at once?"

1988-1992 era, Navy (Aviation). Don't know how it is today.... but I doubt anything has changed in this regard.

yes, precisely. I was in Great Lakes (Great Mistake). Oct-Nov, very mixed weather. CC (company commander) would get the weather report. Wear the "appropriate" clothing, all 80'ish assholes wearing exactly the same layers in precisely the same way.

Weather be damned. If it started snowing, tough shit, dungaree shirts with jacket folded on belt it was. If it went from snowing/blowing to sunny and hot, fuck you, wool beanie and pea coat. All I know ... is it RARELY worked out in our favor to have the right gear on for the weather. Too hot, too cold, never juuuuuust right. But damn, did we look good and strut proud with the Big Chicken flag flying !

 The Army and Marines (in my experience) had it the worst. Its also very command driven. Hard charging CO and unit ... reduced uniform bullshit and more Battle E's.  I saw Marines gigged for some of the most insane shit in garrison/school. I watched a Gunney tug on a Marine's(my best buddy in tech school) pants leg over and over until he could get it to cover the rear shoe heel. Promptly stood up and announced "unsat. extra duty ....". I gave him endless shit for that ! "unsat" became a class inside joke. Even the squids had to iron razor blade sharp creases and use 3 cans of spray starch on dungaree shirts ... because you learn better when you are soaked in starch from your shirt as you sweat in the Tennessee sun/humidity.

@Astronomy, if you are going on about the uniforms... you might as well apply your skills on the painting rocks, polishing brass, floors which glowed an ethereal light for exactly 3 minutes before everyone walked all over them... and other items for uniformity, motivation and unit pride....

I had a prior-enlisted commander that loved to send us to the field in all of our gear (he was usually too busy to accompany us unless BN was also going to the field). One time we were doing a GMLRS demonstration shoot (in Kuwait) for the locals (I think they were marketing HIMARS) and the orders were that we would be slick, i.e. no body armor, helmets or PPE. The commander didn't believe that it was appropriate to go to the field without wearing our entire costume, so he ordered everyone to wear all of our gear for those three days.

Headquarters and the FDC went to the location where the audience was located and the firing platoons  were quite a distance away because of the minimum range of the rockets. I was the XO and located with HQ, but the 1SG had also convinced the CDR that it was my job to distribute hot chow, so twice a day I would drive in to Buehring, grab food, and run it around to the PLTs.

Well, the BDE CDR showed up and saw a bunch of Joes running around in full PPE and lost his shit, so the Battery Commander revised his order. Anyone within eyesight of the bleachers had to be slick, anyone that the BDE CDR couldn't see had to wear his gear.

I went on a chow run without my IOTV on, the 1SG saw me through my window and reported me, and my punishment was to wear my IOTV, helmet, etc for the next two days, which also meant that I couldn't leave my vehicle (because the BDE CDR might see me). 

So, yeah, COs get dumb about gear and when and where to wear it.



 

Last edited by Community Member
@Community Member posted:

I had a prior-enlisted commander that loved to send us to the field in all of our gear. One time we were doing a GMLRS demonstration shoot (in Kuwait) for the locals (I think they were marketing HIMARS) and the orders were that we would be slick, i.e. no body armor, helmets or PPE. The commander didn't believe that it was appropriate to go to the field without wearing our entire costume, so he ordered everyone to wear all of our gear for those three days.

Headquarters and the FDC went to the location where the audience was located and the firing platoons  were quite a distance away because of the minimum range of the rockets. I was the XO and located with HQ, but the 1SG had also convinced the CDR that it was my job to distribute hot chow, so twice a day I would drive in to Buehring, grab food, and run it around to the PLTs.

Well, the BDE CDR showed up and saw a bunch of Joes running around in full PPE and lost his shit, so the Battery Commander revised his order. Anyone within eyesight of the bleachers had to be slick, anyone that the BDE CDR couldn't see had to wear his gear.

I went on a chow run without my IOTV on, the 1SG saw me through my window and reported me, and my punishment was to wear my IOTV, helmet, etc for the next two days, which also meant that I couldn't leave my vehicle (because the BDE CDR might see me). 

So, yeah, COs get dumb about gear and when and where to wear it.

holy fuck... how the fuck does the Army deal with countermanding orders? We were instructed to roughly state, "Sir/Petty Officer, I was ordered by <so and so> to do <xyz>.  Do you wish to countermand this order?"  The statement cleared us of all responsibility of the "lost order/task".  Any consequences were on the New Order Guy for countermanding. If "old order" guy came in I would state, "Officer/Petty Officer New So and So was informed of your order and chose to countermand it with my new task/order."

I guess they could have had to taking on and off your gear endlessly  but at least you have them pissing on each other instead of you.

I think I might win for the dumbest "you gotta check that box and wear _____" shit ever.

I wear glasses. I'm fucking blind without them. When I deployed to Afghanistan I had my eyepro w/ prescription inserts from OSUT, but they were really scratched up, so I ordered another set- and when it became obvious that wasn't going to happen, I ordered poly-carbonate lense replacements in my personal glasses on my dime. My CO when I deployed asked me about why I wasn't issued eyepro I explained the situation and after examining my glasses said I was ok.

Fast forward a few months and I have a new CO. A month or two later, he asks why I wasn't wearing issued eyepro and once again I explain everything, he examines my glasses, and I figure I'm good. Nope. My PSG talks to me an hour later and informs me that I now have to wear issued eyepro when I go outside the wire. Full stop. Doesn't matter that I'm blind or that I'm a .50 gunner on a Humvee. Orders. So for a few weeks when we'd go out on patrol I'd wear eyepro w/ no prescription and as soon as we were 100 meters out I'd change out to my regular glasses.

About 3 weeks later we came back from a long patrol and I forgot to switch out my glasses. CO saw it and had the 1SG punish me by inspecting every person going on guard for full kit/ PPE, and I had to be in full kit as well. So between 2000 and 0600 I had to wake up every hour, get in full kit, and inspect the changing of the guard. Ironically inspecting while I could barely see. This lasted for weeks. So while running missions AS A .50 GUNNER blind as a bat day and night I had to then give up what little sleep I got (I still had to pull my regular guard too). So I was a goddamn zombie. Oh, and I had to write a multipage essay on the importance of following orders too of course.

Eventually I jerry rigged an old pair of civilian glasses under an oversized pair of eyepro so I could see and still comply with his "order". Those glasses had actual glass lenses and given the massive gap of wearing two pairs of glasses at the same time, anything explody would have blinded the fuck out of me. 

 

I was the Chief topside during an all hands stores load in Guam/PI,somewhere fucking hot and humid. the guys where down to t shirts and a couple without. Some squadron weinie comes by and says they have to have shirts and covers. I told him according to Navy Uniform regulations the senior man in charge of the working party decides what the proper uniform. He went away and bothered somebody else. One of these days I am going to look that up and see if its true.

You know, I originally posted these guidelines with the thought that hey, at least someone in the Army is thinking critically about load planning etc. But now, after reading all these comments, I realize that this knowledge and guidance is going to be simply ignored. 

At least you tried 😆.  There are elements in the Army that will put that info to good use.  Unfortunately, I dont think the AWG documents get as much exposure as they should.  They actually put out some good information that tends to be more up to date than doctrine.  I do think their subterranean warfare handbook was a bit thin, but the books theyve done on Iran, Mosul and mountain warfare have been good.  

@Community Member posted:

At least you tried 😆.  There are elements in the Army that will put that info to good use.  Unfortunately, I dont think the AWG documents get as much exposure as they should.  They actually put out some good information that tends to be more up to date than doctrine.  I do think their subterranean warfare handbook was a bit thin, but the books theyve done on Iran, Mosul and mountain warfare have been good.  

Yeah, re-reading my comment, it appears that I think LF is going ignore it; not true! I first learned about AWG and their products here, and if anyone is going to pay attention to stuff like this, it'll be the LF crew. 

@Community Member posted:

holy fuck... how the fuck does the Army deal with countermanding orders? We were instructed to roughly state, "Sir/Petty Officer, I was ordered by <so and so> to do <xyz>.  Do you wish to countermand this order?"  The statement cleared us of all responsibility of the "lost order/task".  Any consequences were on the New Order Guy for countermanding. If "old order" guy came in I would state, "Officer/Petty Officer New So and So was informed of your order and chose to countermand it with my new task/order."

I guess they could have had to taking on and off your gear endlessly  but at least you have them pissing on each other instead of you.

Holy shit balls. That finally explains why a battalion of soldiers—occupying the same camp as us while we were staged before heading north from Kuwait—were wearing eyepro and FR gloves while doing random shit in Aug of ‘08.

I pulled a team of them aside while walking to the DFAC and asked WTF.  

“Orders sir...”

Ok, but does that make sense?

“Orders sir...“

I guess sone commander, with full compliance from his SGM (or the other way around), decided adult men and women needed practice wearing gloves and Wiley-X eyepro.

All services are guilty though. BGen John Kelly (yeah, former WH chief of staff Kelly) had the gonads to ask me if I ever pondered what my men thought about the fact that I smoked (he rolled up on me in a smoke pit after I had just briefed him and Mattis on my company’s actions during attack into Iraq in 2003).   For fuck’s sake dude!  He bet me I could quit smoking by the time we got to Baghdad.  I never snitched on my Bn CCDO though, who had given me a carton of smokes from his personal stash while we waited for personal gear to get moved from the port.  He smoked too.

Hmmm, makes you wonder what he could possibly imagine your men thought about the fact that you smoked...

1. A go-to to bum smokes off of.

2. Mustang, prior-enlisted type who you can hit up for info in the smoke pit.

3. Wife-beating, dog-hating, non-shooting, contagious cancer carrier, who must be avoided at all times.

In Iraq, 2006, fell under 25ID CG who hated porn (and probably bacon too).  Nothing 'offensive' could be decorating living areas and we were to ensure nothing was coming through the mail...  Luckily, he never visited my company AO, or looked at my PC.

Tankersteve

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