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Old March 11, 2001, 01:02 PM   #1
Join Date: November 16, 2000
Posts: 86
Aloha everyone

Okay I don't have much time here right now in the PX but I managed to hop on a comp (a SLOW comp at that) here on Fort Benning. I finished my 8 weeks of Basic, and now I go into the specialized training phase.

Suffice to say that I think I should maybe have gone to the Marine Corps (LOL) ... I have volumes to speak of the disappointment I have felt with the training, the general lack of quality recruits (Fire and Movement with some of them is REALLY just a bad bad experience) ... and as far as I am concerned all I have to do is suck it up, stay with the good eggs, and drive on.

In spite of the scams, in spite of the penny-pinching, in spite of the total BS that permeates this place, I just hope when I get to my real-life unit things will get better. My platoon out of 56 lost 10 AWOLs, 10 to injuries, and will lose 3-4 more to other reasons and probably get disbanded within the next week. Life has seriously sucked for me here and the lack of discipline and consistency has been a perennial disappointment.

I just hope I can get stationed in Korea, or another serious hardship post now.

Everyone please take care ... will write at length in 6 weeks.

A hui hou
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Old March 11, 2001, 06:52 PM   #2
Mike in VA
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Join Date: October 16, 1998
Location: Santa FE, NM
Posts: 2,163
Good to hear you're doing OK, even if things aren't exactly the way you had hoped. Berst advise I can offer is to maintain your focus, lead by example, and get what you want out of the deal. Best of luck, & thank you for your service. M2
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Old March 11, 2001, 07:17 PM   #3
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Join Date: July 20, 2000
Location: pasadena,california,America
Posts: 542
Oy,tomodachi...genki desu?

Hang in there, friend. You see daylight soon.
Be patient and stay focussed. Like Mike say, learn what you can, lead by example.
See what works and what doesn't and learn to use both if you expect to be a leader of men.
It is not a perfect system, but it is what you have to get you where you want to be. Always look to your options and plan a general course of action to get there.
Life is short, bruddah...take time to enjoy it.

Aloha and mahalo.
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Old March 12, 2001, 12:41 AM   #4
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Join Date: December 30, 2000
Location: San Diego, California
Posts: 255
Hang in there, and make the most out of your experience. I know it can suck sometimes but it's always darkest before the dawn. On a side note, I'm having a ball in the Marines
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Old March 18, 2001, 03:16 PM   #5
Join Date: November 16, 2000
Posts: 86
LASur5er shih, and everyone

I am so sorry for not being able to write. I'm still under restrictions. I've had a tough time dealing with the crude, illiterate, degenerate, drug-using, racist, criminal dirtbags the United States Army has seen fit to recruit into its ranks.

I've come to the point where I truly wish I had joined the Marines. Only an ex-Marine friend of mine here keeps me in check. My battle buddy just went AWOL today. This is the second one I've lost.

The system seems to not work very well. I'm fighting every day to keep myself going in spite of the lack of human respect and camaraderie in my disintegrating platoon.

I think I'll move along nicely, so long as I surround myself with motivated people. But honestly, the weapons systems, the training, and the quality of recruits in the Infantry School aren't quite stellar ... not by a long shot.

I have a lot of trouble dealing with racists and degenerates. I ended up knocking one out with the butt of my M16A2 last week after I was assaulted. This was after 10+ weeks of holding back, obeying the standing order "Not to fight" which got me labelled as a weakling. I ended up sending the jerk to the hospital with a concussion, and I got a summarized Article 15 only because the NCO cadre seem to like me.

At any rate, I'm here on my pass, discouraged but alive. I have a 12 mile road march tomorrow. I've been through what seems to be a bitter experience. I so much more wish it was something I could be proud of, but I am not.

I just wish there were compatriots I could admire here, but they are few and far between. What happened to honor, duty, love of country?

Take care everyone ... I'll write as soon as I can. Much aloha to everyone at TFL.

PS - LASur5er shih, I'll try to write snail mail. Please leave me an address at [email protected] and I'll try. I'm choked for words now but I'll try. BTW you were an FAO, right? It looks like I'll be going close to that path in mortars, first. Please take care ... regards to your family. May they be safe always.
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Old March 19, 2001, 01:21 PM   #6
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Join Date: December 6, 2000
Location: Bragg
Posts: 242
Hang in there. Get through the B-S and then go to Ranger Regiment or bide your time until you can get to SFAS and get into Special Forces. Do not stay in the regular Army - permeated with dirtbags and miscreants.

It gets better - sounds like what I went through. Extremely disappointing. But, went on to SF and had a ball. Keep up the attitude.

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Old March 20, 2001, 05:46 PM   #7
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Join Date: June 5, 2000
Location: Job hunting on the road...
Posts: 3,827
A coupla things, vicedude...

1) You gotta realize that most of the folks who go 11 Bang Bang (what used to be the designation from Infantry) aren't the most mentally motivated individuals out there... They went Infantry because they didn't rack high enough on the ASVAB to do something interesting, like "Cook" or "Driver." The Army always needs people dumb enough to believe that they'll survive making a frontal assault. So does the Marines. You'll find idiots in either group. The Marines have some good PR, but you'll see the same behavior.

Basic training is DESIGNED to take that group of low-lifes, break 'em down into NOTHING, and then build 'em back into some semblance of inter-connected soldiers. At least that USED to be the way things were done. It flat out sucks to be there, whether you're a low-life, or a highly motivated soldier. Deal with it. Make friends with your NCOs, and learn from them. Let them know your dreams, and your disappointments. ASK for guidance, and do what they tell you. Get to know your Top... Don't be afraid to excel in training, but don't gloat about it. It's better (unless your platoon is racing another...) to finish in the middle of the pack in a run, because you were encouraging someone, than it is to finish 1st and leave your buddy in the dust.

2) Keep a low profile. Basic Training is something that one survives, and puts behind 'em. Don't ask more of others than they're willing to give, and give more than they ask. Be a team player, and the NCOs and officers will notice. If you bitch at the folks in your platoon for being slackers, they'll notice that too... Give 110%, and then another 10% for those around you. You may get dropped occasionally because some jerk does something stupid, but that's the way it is. Live with it. One massive part of basic (going on to Infantry AIT) is learning to function with a team, not as a loner. Loners DO NOT make it. I think I may have told you this before. You're living the quiz. Talk to folks who've done the hard-core schools - It isn't always the hard-core folks who finish - it's the ones who stick with it, with their teams... If your squad isn't cohesive, work to make it cohesive.

3) Go talk to your friendly NCO (believe it or not, they're there to make sure you SUCCEED in training), and ask if it would be wise to request a meeting with the commanding officer, or whoever administered that Article 15 - State your grievances, especially regarding the harrassment and assault, and humbly request that the punishment be stricken from your records following your course of training, provided you maintain a clean record (of course, I don't remember if they do that with the summarized ones or not... if so, ignore...). Then swallow your pride. An Article 15 is NOT a good thing to have on your record, especially if you aspire to join an "elite" outfit or go to OCS - They do not want hotheads, regardless of what you may have read...

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Old March 22, 2001, 05:30 PM   #8
Join Date: January 16, 2001
Location: Virginia
Posts: 92
Hang tight!!! I was Articled 15 in AIT during 1979. I was attacked by a black racist and I put him into the hospital. He got off scott free, but I got the short end of the stick. I thought to myself that if this is the way the Army is going to be I want out. Guess what? I made a career of the Army and am now retired. My experience has been that first and foremost BE A TEAM PLAYER and keep this mindset regardless of circumstances. Trust me, it is a little better once you go to your first permanent party station. Good luck and good soldiering.
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